LeBron James didn't drop 40 points, or remind anyone of Michael Jordan. Miami's defense faltered, at times. Several Mavericks hit shots they weren't supposed to hit. And in the initial reaction, honestly, that's all you can criticize on both ends before crediting the Dallas Mavericks to no end for earning a 3-2 lead after winning Game 5 of the NBA Finals by a 112-103 score on Thursday night. Because this was some brilliant basketball.
Can't help but remember back a year ago when we were in this same spot, up 3 games to 2 and headed to L.A.
With that said, all the pressure seems to be on LeBron and the Heat right now.
From the edge of disaster, from the brink, James can still do the unthinkable. After running off to play with Wade and Bosh, the ultimate frontrunner can still craft the ultimate comeback. Between now and then, the biggest job for James will be to spare himself combustion from ingesting everything that’s coming for him now. These Mavericks don’t seem to believe this is all fuel for James. They don’t believe he gets angry and narrow, but shaken and obtuse. They aren’t alone, and that’s the burden on James now.