The Press Buffet: All Told, I'd Rather Be in Cleveland

Sunday, June 03, 2007


There's only one place to be this weekend, and that's Cleveland. LeBron has risen to the occasion and carried the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals. That's a major boon for TV ratings. Added to that, the Indians also played pretty well against Detroit this weekend, so we're headed to the city of Drew Carey and the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame. And Brady Quinn.

Our paper of record is the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

So, it seems LeBron quit chewing his fingernails and took a bite-sized chunk out of the Detroit Pistons this weekend.

In the obligatory game recap article, Branson Wright suggests that maybe LeBron has found his sidekick. MJ had his Scottie, King James has his Boobie.

If Game 5 belonged to James, Game 6 was about rookie Daniel "Boobie" Gibson. His outside shooting spree ignited the home team in the fourth quarter. Gibson scored 19 of his 31 points in the fourth. He nailed four of his five 3-pointers in the quarter.

"I told him that I believe Detroit was going to double me and triple-team me before I even cross half court, so get that gun and get it locked and loaded," James said.


Bill Livingston gives us a look inside LeBron's pre-game routine on one of the biggest days of his life:

On the floor, James began the shooting routine he has adopted in this series. He moved around the 3-point arc, like a contestant in the All-Star Game shootout. He paused for free throws, greeting misses with: "Aargh!" cries. More long-range shots. More free throws. Then, post-up moves.

When he missed a fadeaway from the lane, he screamed: "Don't leave it short! Don't ever leave it short!"

He picked up the offending ball and hurled down a dunk, hanging on the rim afterward, still shouting, "Don't leave it short!"


A motto for the ages.

Finally, Mary Schmitt Boyer spares a thought for Zydrunas Ilgauskas:

No one has been through more in his Cavaliers career than Ilgauskas. He was a 21-year-old rookie out of Lithuania when the Cavs made him a first-round draft choice, the 20th player taken, in the 1996 draft. He missed his first season with a broken bone in his right foot, the first of many, many injuries that almost robbed him of his career.


Z. even gives props to the team staff, saying "People see the basketball players on TV, but they don't see the staff behind it. They work just as hard as we do and get no credit."

And there was much rejoicing.

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In baseball news, The Tribe were inspired to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat as well, possibly aided by the fact that their opponent came from the same rival city. Joe Maxse recounts the 9th inning rally that no doubt left Detroiters wondering "why us?"

Losing for the seventh time in eight games, the aftermath on the Detroit side was none too pleasant. But manager Jim Leyland said he was not going to put all the blame on closer Todd Jones, who was tagged for five runs and seven hits.

"Todd Jones is our closer, and he's been terrific," said Leyland.


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And there's even a little unwelcome NFL news, as reported by Tony Grossi:

NFL owners and executives were informed this week that alcohol is banned in any club setting, "including in locker rooms, practice or office facilities, or while traveling, including on team buses or flights."

That means beat writers, too. As late as last year, several public relations directors would offer pizza and beer to the stragglers banging out game stories in the press box late into the evening. No more.


This Goodell dude is totally harshing our buzz, man.

That's the news out of Cleveland, folks. I'm so excited, I may actually watch the NBA finals this year.

--Extra P.


1 Comments:

My uncle and his family lived in Cleveland for about 30 years(they moved up in the world a few years ago; they now live in Toledo...), and if you've ever been there, you'd re-think that headline. It's not called the Mistake by the Lake for nuthin', ya know...

Bruce said...
Jun 3, 2007, 1:08:00 PM  

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