Forget Pittsburgh. Forget Baltimore. Forget Michael Jordan and “The Shot”. Forget John Elway and his “Drive”.
If the Cavaliers were to meet the Miami Heat in the playoffs and somehow, someway, win, it would all be worth it in Cleveland’s eyes. Yes, they hate LeBron James just that much.
Of course, that’s about as likely as the Lakers selecting Harrison Moore in the 2012 NBA draft, but contrary to popular belief this could actually happen.
(“This” being the playoff series taking place, not the Cavaliers pulling off what would be the greatest upset in sports history. Don’t worry, I know that I won’t be sporting Purple ‘N Gold next year.)
The Boston Celtics are as interested in the regular season as the city of Los Angeles is interested in the Clippers and the Cavaliers are done winning number one overall seeds.
The only significant Eastern Conference competition the Heat should face in the regular season should come from the Magic, but over the years they’ve proven to be highly inconsistent and have doubtlessly benefited from the lack of competition in their division.
The only other Eastern Conference team to rack up a win total in the 50’s in the last two years are the Hawks and come on, they’re the Hawks.
The Miami Heat should be a near shoe-in for the number one seed in the East this year, but what about the Cavaliers?
Well, the top five seeds in the East are probably guaranteed to Miami, Orlando, Boston, Chicago and Atlanta. Aside from those guys, the Eastern Conference is extremely fluid.
Last year the Raptors couldn’t make the playoffs with Chris Bosh healthy for the majority of the season. Without him they’ll be lucky to win more than 30 games.
The Knicks got Amar’e Stoudemire but lost David Lee. With Stoudemire on board, they should be okay on offense, but fans should be prepared to see a lot of points scored in the Madison Square Garden – but the majority won’t come from the Knicks.
The list goes on and on, but for all the shaking up that’s taken place in the East, its still a very top heavy conference and is anything but deep.
Mo Williams and Antawn Jamison won’t be advancing in the playoffs as Cleveland’s primary options, but in the weakening bottom half of the East, they could remain competitive enough to secure a playoff seeding.
I won’t bother analyzing the potential details and matchups of this event as I’ve already posted enough on this slide and the outcome should be quite clear, but even if Miami wins every game in this series by 40, the world will be watching from jumpball until the final horn.