As the final buzzer sounded in Cleveland, Ohio, the whole city breathed one big sigh of relief. Finally, after so many years of losing, they were the Kings of the Basketball world. After 51 years of mediocrity, it had all come to an end. They had finally won a championship.
And what a better way to do it, than by defeating the reigning NBA Champions (who won 73 games, by the way) in 7 games after being down 3-1. The whole thing, it was beautiful.
But what if, and it’s a big “what if”, this Cleveland team won’t get the chance to stream the confetti again? What if LeBon James doesn’t win another ring?
At the start of the season, there was two teams: the Cavs, and the Warriors. Everyone figured it would be yet another repeat of the same Finals we’ve had for the last two years. Cleveland was supposed to be dominating the East, while the Warriors (with the addition of KD) were supposed to be almost unbeatable.
But now, things don’t look as good for either team. The Warriors have been dealing with injury and chemistry issues, while the defending champs? They’ve just been plain bad.
In the midst of all those struggles though, one team seems to be really starting something special. And that team isn’t going to back down anytime soon.
Let’s go back to July 12, 2013. It marked a date that would change the city of Boston forever. For years, they had grown attached to their two All-Stars, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce. For years, they'd watched these guys rise and fall on all spectrums of the scale. They were legends and, for the first time in years, they would no longer be in Boston.
On that July day, they both got traded to the Brooklyn Nets for 3 first round draft picks, Kris Humphries, and Gerald Wallace. Thus began an era of rebuilding for Boston, the likes of which they hadn’t seen in a long time.
Boston fans knew what to expect. What they didn’t know, was that they’d soon be right back on pace to bring home another championship. There were a few years of growing pains, and frustrating loss (as expected). But the Celtics would soon find themselves right back on the map, and a whole lot sooner than anyone expected.
They got rid of Rondo, traded for picks, took on Isaiah Thomas, and signed Brad Stevens. Soon, free agents started looking at the Cetics like a box of chocolate, and players like Amir Johnson, Al Horford, and Jae Crowder started flooding to the team like a moth to the flame. In just a few years, the Celtics made themselves back to what they’ve always been: Winners.
And now, that winners mentality is finally starting to take root on the court. With the number one seed in the East, they can maintain home court advantage throughout the playoffs. And with the Cavs struggling like they are? The Celtics have a real shot to beat them.
But it’s more than just this year. The thing is, this Boston team is already set for the future. They don’t have to worry about how old their best player is, or if they can get a draft pick next year. They can maintain the talent they have now while continuing to find fresh and new talent.
The Celtics are on the verge of building a true dynasty, one that can last for years.
It’s time to stop thinking about Cleveland as the only competitor in the East. It’s time to think about LeBron James’ dominance over the East being over. After all, nothing lasts forever. Maybe we need to get ready to crown a new King in the East, and they are taking the league by storm before our very eyes.
Watch out, LeBron, the Celtics are here. And they are not going away for a long, long time.