NBA Finals Diary- One Game For Everything

3 1/2 hours before tip-off in Game 7 of the NBA Finals and I've managed to keep myself occupied all day long.

A graduation party Saturday, the cleanup and family obligations this morning and this afternoon, a few check-ins of the Tribe game on television, one in which they completed a three game sweep of the White Sox, and I've been busy enough and occupied to avoid the elephant in the room.

But the cleanup is about completed and the family has packed up and headed to their respective homes. Now it's just me and a myriad of emotions.

No fan in the 'Land wants this any more than I do. There are thousands who want it as much, but no one wants it more. Especially on Father's Day.

One of my earliest memories as a kid was the Miracle of Richfield Cavs. I remember seemingly every game against the Washington Bullets going down to the wire. I remember going to bed with the game still on the radio (they weren't televised live in those days) and sleeping with a giant-ass radio under my pillow as Joe Tait went horse calling Dick Snyder's running winner in game seven at the Richfield Coliseum.

My dad, who died in 1993 at the age of 49, went to that Game 7. He's the one who told me to keep the radio on low, under my pillow, so as to avoid the wrath of my mother in a nearby room. He then probably told my mother to let it pass and leave it alone.

I woke up that next day for school to find a Cavaliers pennant hanging over my bedroom door. My old man was a maintenance guy for CEI and the pennant, though a small token, was still one that was a luxury when he and mom were raising three boys on one income back then.

So for me, tonight is a mixed bag. If you know your Cavs history, you know Jim Chones broke his foot in between the Bullets series and the Conference Finals against Boston. You know an aging Nate Thurmond, despite the want-to, just couldn't hold down the fort for an entire series against the Celtics' front line.

You also know all the other stuff and I, not being obligated with any ESPN affiliation, am not going to drag anyone through that montage. You'll see it tonight if you look for it.

None of that crap a means damn thing tonight.

I'm not one believe the past is a precursor to the future. Am I uneasy based on that history? Yes, I am. It's simply become a part of me. But I told you in the previous Diary that when Andrew Bogut went down in the third quarter of Game 5 that I saw the path for the Cavaliers. It still hasn't gotten the play it deserves.

The Cavaliers tonight have an opportunity to win a title. They have a legit chance given they have the best player on the floor who's playing on a level not seen before in the Finals.

I'm not concerned about curses, jinxes or the past. I'm just nervous about the reality of tonight. Golden State is ridiculously good. The Cavaliers have knocked them off their comfortable path time and again in this series. They've banged, bruised and completely frustrated Steph Curry. They've gone David Blaine and made Harrison Barnes disappear completely. Even the injuries and wear and tear seem to be favoring the Cavaliers, with the Warriors do-everything guy, Andre Iguodala, nursing a bad back.

But this Warriors team is talented. They're the defending champions and if they won tonight by 20-points I wouldn't bat an eye. They're that good and they're that capable of just going off. No lead is safe and you have to be disciplined and efficient for 48 minutes.

And while I understand that for many people tonight is a communal experience, with formal watch parties and informal gatherings and all of that kind of stuff, I can't bring myself to be a part of that. I can't watch games with a group of people.

Instead I'll watch the game myself, likely alone, living and dying with every run from either team, every call and with 38 emotions coming and going every quarter. I told you the drill. If the Cavs win I'll be up to all hours watching highlights and commentary and checking all modes of social media. If they lose I'll turn off the television immediately at the final horn and avoid everyone and all forms of media for the next few days.

If the Cavaliers get it done, against the long odds they've faced through coaching changes and personnel issues, I'll allow myself one small nod to acknowledge their accomplishment: I'll pour a shot of Wild Turkey for the old man and one for me, walk out onto the deck and silently raise my glass to him.

Can't think of a better way to cap off this Father's Day.

Go Cavs.
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