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Same Old Story? Cleveland Sports Fans Brace for the Biggest Heartbreak

CLEVELAND - MAY 11:  LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers looks on while playing the Boston Celtics in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2010 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on May 11, 2010 in Cleveland, Ohio. Boston won the game 120-88 to take a 3-2 series lead. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
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Chris BurnhamContributor IMay 12, 2010

There comes a point where it just becomes too much.

In watching the Cavs wilt immediately after two quick threes from Ray Allen in the opening moments of the third quarter on Tuesday night, the crowd fell silent in apparent resignation.

Resignation that, once again, championship aspirations fall by the wayside. And once again, a beloved figure will leave his team to drown in the misery that only they know.

Cleveland, as downtrodden as it is, is now awaiting the death sentence. The one singular glimmer of hope that the city has is now excoriating itself in such pathetic fashion that no one knows what to blame first.

To the city's credit, they're used to disasters like this. They're well-adept at wearing the stoic mask that hides the tragedies that they just come to expect.

I wasn't one to believe in whole cities being cursed, but I'm starting to turn that corner. Thank goodness I'm not a Browns fan. Otherwise, I might not be here writing this.

But this is different. The effort by LeBron is only there when he apparently wants it to be. If an elbow is the source of all of this, then it better had be a Tommy John situation. No other diagnosis will suffice for him shutting it down at the most crucial time for the Cavaliers franchise in, well, ever.

Worse, it looks like they've collectively checked out mentally. They are dismayed that they aren't being given an open door straight to the Eastern Conference championship.

And once again, Mike Brown's offense is LeBron-on-Five. And this plays right into Boston's hands.

If the Cavaliers fail, and LeBron leaves, I can't imagine the "Q" being filled to the brim ever again.

And once LeBron would returns as a member of whatever team wins the sweepstakes for his services, he immediately would become the most-hated sports figure in the city that has had plenty to turn venomous toward.

An entire building filled once a year to accomplish one goal: to boo him viciously with decibel levels that even the deaf would cover their ears over.

Mr. Modell, enjoy your reprieve.

Cavs fans have let their guard down. Allowing that little ray of hope to seep through. And once again, it eviscerates instead of heals. Welcome to the new era of heartbreak.

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