Saturday, April 22, 2006

Cavaliers 97, Wizards 86

There is a moment for LeBron James where time nearly stands still. A moment where the entire world seems to be in his hands.
He has the ball, up top, eye to eye with his defender. Right then, he can do anything and everything. And anything and everything is what he did this afternoon.
In his first playoff game, LeBron became the second-youngest player to notch a triple-double in the playoffs with 32 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists. The only player younger? Magic Johnson.
LeBron looked like a man who had waited three years for his playoff debut. He seized the moment with a vise grip and a lot of help from his teammates. Eric Snow and Donyell Marshall played like veterans who are used to the playoff atmosphere. They will need to be the players that help LeBron shoulder leading this team, and today they answered the bell.
Washington, meanwhile, had their shooting touch abandon them, thanks in large part to swift defense from the Cavs. Gilbert Arenas didn't break out of a scoring funk until the fourth quarter, and fouled out with less than a minute to play.
It's a long series, and will probably still be a dogfight. But LeBron and the Cavs made a statement today. The regular season is over, and they are ready for the challenge of the postseason.

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