Last year, we were supposed to witness to a Kobe-versus-LeBron finale. The Cavs coasted through the regular season and the first two rounds of the playoffs until they were exposed as a one-trick pony by the Orlando Magic. The front office in Cleveland will be damned if that happens again this year. The Cavs got shredded in the paint last season, so they wanted to get bigger and more physical on the inside. Who’s the biggest, most physically imposing player of the last decade or so they could bring in to help free up LeBron James? The Big Diesel, Shaquille O’Neal, that’s who. The Cavaliers have no more excuses for failing in the playoffs any more. Without a doubt, the signing of O’Neal is the missing piece of the puzzle. Teams are going to have to double the big man inside or he will score at will. They can double and triple James, but he’s still going to get his. When you have the best big man in the history of basketball and the best all-around athlete playing the game today with Bron Bron, there is no way this team shouldn’t win the NBA title. When you add in sharp-shooting point guard Mo Williams and the all-out-hustle style of play with PF Anderson Varajao, this is the most complete team that Cleveland has ever assembled. They have a solid bench with the likes of Daniel “Boobie” Gibson and “the Big Z ” Zydrunas Ilgauskas providing solid minutes and veteran play as well. This is the year LeBron gets his ring - put it in the books.
Prodigy’s take: Cleveland had better hope they win the title this year or it’s bye, bye, LeBron. A lot of funny things can happen during an 82-game season, and there are bound to be injuries along the way. If the Cavs can keep it all together, they can bring home the championship and secure LeBron for the long term. If the Shaq-signing blows up in their face and Lebron isn’t happy, they might as well dismantle the entire City of Cleveland because, frankly, this team is all that city’s got. Prediction: 1st in Central.