What the Kobe-LeBron Matchup Proved on Christmas Day

December 26th, 2009 by Tom Delamater Leave a reply »
It was one of the most anticipated matchups of the NBA’s regular season: The Lakers vs. the Cavaliers. Kobe Bryant vs. LeBron James.

Surprisingly, it was over almost as soon as it started. Cleveland turned in a dominant performance and won, 102-87. What did we learn?

Whether Kobe is better than LeBron, or vice-versa? No.

Whether the Lakers are better than the Cavs? No.

Whether Shaq has truly made that championship difference for Cleveland? No.

What we learned, plain and simple, is that the game takes place inside the black lines. And the game we saw revealed a Cavaliers team that is a contender, not a pretender.

That’s about it. For Cleveland fans, it was enough.

The Cavaliers were coming off of solid wins at Phoenix and Sacramento. The ability to consistently win on the road is an indication of a quality team, and the Cavs have looked good on their current West Coast swing.

Still, this was different. This was the league’s current marquee team, the defending champions. And the Cavaliers were not intimidated.

It was the classic setup: The Lakers had everything to lose, a ...

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