It was another beautiful summer day in Cleveland on Tuesday, and oh what a day it was to have my favorite lunch meal at Chick- fil-A on Richmond in Warrensville Heights.
As usual the place was packed, but I managed to secure the VIP treatment from my friend and the operator Gerrick Doss.
I took the usual, chicken strips, waffle fries, lemonade and a few packs of honey. Gerrick decided to join me at the table as I devoured my complementary meal.
At precisely one bite in, the conversation turned to the hometown Cavs, to which no one with a pulse is giving a remote shot at winning the NBA championship against the Golden State Warriors that begin on Thursday.
As I attempted to mount a defense for the Cavs, which had just defeated the Boston Celtics to win the Eastern Conference Championship, that’s when Gerrick went on the offense.
“Look, while I love the Cavs and LeBron, if they win this championship I will never watch another basketball game, because I would know that it was fixed.”
Right before I could paste another strip with honey and offer my rebuttal, he summoned on of his lead workers for support.
“Now do you think the Cavs have a chance to beat the Warriors?”
To which the young woman, replied, sheepishly “No.”
Here I am in the heart of Cavs country, a transplant from Los Angeles and I could not get any help in giving the LeBron James led Cavaliers a shot at winning its second title against a team they beat two years ago.
Never mind that LeBron is playing the greatest he’s ever had, and that kept him in a debate as the best ever.
Never mind, that this is a Cavs team that didn’t even know they would coexist with each other four months ago.
By golly, they still don’t know if LeBron will be a Cavalier after this year.
Put me in the minority and maybe in the only one category, who honestly feels the Cavs have a good chance of beating the Warriors.
The Warriors are playing at an elite level, shooting the 3-ball with reckless abandon, while the Cavs are missing on three point shots with regularity.
I’ll leave the statistics up to the nerds and analytical goons, but I am basing my biased observations on history.
In 1969 nobody gave Joe Namath and the New York Jets a chance to beat the Colts, but they did win 16-7.
Namath guaranteed a victory in Super Bowl III over the Colts, but absolutely no one was picking the AFL champions to win over the Colts, who had dominated the league that year.
The Jets scored 16 unanswered points from the start of the game, and put to bed any claims that the AFL was inferior to the NFL.
In 1980, the "Miracle on Ice" is still the top upset in sports history, and it seems hard to believe anything could ever surpass it.— USA 4, USSR 3
How about North Carolina State’s shocker over Houston in 1983 NCAA Championship Game, North Carolina State 54, Houston 52
Houston had torched the country all year long, going 31-2, and were led by two future NBA legends in Clyde Drexler and Hakeem Olajuwon.
The Cougars had N.C. State on the ropes in the second half, but Sidney Lowe led the Wolfpack to a late-game surge, and Dereck Whittenburg's alley-oop to Lorenzo Charles won N.C. State a national championship.
Villanova shocked Patrick Ewing and Georgetown to win the NCAA national championship in 1985, shooting 78.6% from the field to edge a team that was on a 17-game winning streak. Villanova 66, Georgetown 64
Then perhaps the biggest of all upsets 1990 — Ohio native Buster Douglas knocks out Mike Tyson one of the most dangerous fighters ever.
Douglas was a 42-1 underdog, but he punished Tyson's left eye and left him all but blind. In the tenth round, Douglas knocked out Tyson with a flurry of punches to the head.
How about New York Giants shocking the New England Patriots 17-14 in Super Bowl XLII.
The Patriots had already completed a perfect season and it looked like a 19-0 record and were 12-point favorites in Las Vegas, but David Tyree's catch extended a crucial Giants drive late in the fourth quarter, and a touchdown with 35 seconds left would seal the upset.
Now, as Gerrick pointed out theses were one shot wonders and if the Cavs win the 2018 NBA Finals, they would have to beat arguably the greatest team in modern history four games.
I, for one believes that it’s not impossible for the Cleveland Cavaliers to do the unthinkable and shock the world.