Sunday, April 26, 2015

2015 Cavs Playoffs ~ Round One vs. Boston

July 12, 2014 is the day LeBron James made his decision to RETURN to Cleveland and we had renewed hope. Kyrie Irving had already proven himself as a star player and with the addition of a few other pieces; we had high hopes that this would be the start of something great in Cleveland…again.

On August 23, 2014 the Cavaliers announced the acquisition of Kevin Love and the city was buzzing. The national media attention was excessive and the pressure was on. Sean and I attended the home opener with overwhelming excitement, only to be disappointed with the 95-90 loss and 17, 5, 4 performance by LeBron. He didn’t look the same. He didn’t have that same explosiveness and he was not the same LeBron we had watched the season prior.

During the off-season, he admitted to being on a strict diet which led him to lose an undisclosed amount of weight. During the first 38 games of the season, the Cavs went 19-19 and were the most disappointing team in the league. Although, we still maintained hope, it was frustrating. We vividly remember the 2007 NBA Finals, the 2008 Conference Semi-Finals, the 66 win season in 2008-09 and 61 win season of 2009-10. We wanted the city to experience that excitement again. At this rate, the Cavs were on pace to finish with a 41-41 record.

Next was December 30, 2014 when LeBron sat…and he sat. LeBron sat out for 8 straight games due to back and knee injuries and the Cavs went 1-7 without him. On January 13, 2015, LeBron made his return and he came back as the player who awed us. The player whose strength, athleticism and court vision is like no other player in history. The buzz was back. Since then, the Cavs went on to win 34 out of 44 games and finished the season with a 53-29 overall record and a #2 seed in the playoffs.

That brings us to today. The Cavs have missed the Playoffs during the past four seasons, so Steve and I have learned to celebrate mid-April and the end of the Cavs season. This meant a regular routine, evenings at home and weekends doing yard work in the anticipation of summer.

Side note:

Just in case you want to re-live the agony of the 2009 and 2010 Playoffs you can find my blog posts here:

Due to Steve’s 20-year tenure with the Cavalier organization, he has earned Tier 1 status for ticket distribution. This means he was eligible to receive 2 tickets to all 41 home games (compared to only 20 home games for Tier 2) as well as 2 tickets to all 16 (possible) home playoff games (compared to only 8 For Tier 2). Yes, his responsibilities include working every single one of those games, but he happens to have a lovely wife at home who is pretty die-hard J

The yard work will just have to wait.

2015 NBA Playoffs – Round One – Best of Seven Series vs. Boston

Game One – April 19, 2015

I took Steve into work early so I could have his parking pass. He helped get me pumped up by sending me pictures from around the arena throughout the day. He even signed his name on the court!

Although Sean had been traveling a lot for work, he left Alex and the kids at home and joined me for the game. We wanted a blow-out, but the Cavs kept it close. Thankfully, the Cavs' Big Three of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love combined for 69 points led by Kyrie's 30 point performance.

Free "All-In" t-shirts and the Cavs win 113-100

1 Down…15 to Go
Game Two – April 21, 2015

My friend Lisa and I attended Game 2 together. I picked her up after work and we were able to get free parking at the Casino. We made it to Barrio for their awesome happy hour and tacos. We both absolutely love Barrio and with ½ priced margaritas and $2 tacos, it was a really cheap night! It was Lisa's first-ever playoff game, so we took it ALL IN.

Free "Together" t-shirts and the Cavs Win 99-91 – It wasn’t easy, but LeBron James and Kyrie Irving lifted their team in the 4th quarter to score all of the team’s 24 points, finishing with 30 and 26 points respectively.

 Following a few fantastic dunks in the 3rd quarter, everyone in attendance was eligible for a free iced coffee from Dunkin' Donuts'. We happily redeemed on our way into work the next day.

2 Down…14 to Go

Game Three @ BOS – April 23, 2015

Game 3 is when Steve and I were finally able to enjoy the game together. We had been waiting to break into this special beer for this occasion. On March 25th, Brew Kettle Brewery released their limited edition "All For One" collaboration beer with the Cavaliers. It was only available for purchase at Brew Kettle Brewery, Quicken Loans Arena and all Heinen's locations.  As you'd expect, I made my way to Heinen's after work on the 25th and picked up two cases (48 beers) and it was not cheap! 

It took a lot of self-control, but we saved our first two for this game.

All For One Beer and Cavs win 103-95

3 down...13 to go

Game Four @ BOS – April 26, 2015

We were nervous for game four. We invited a few friends and family over with high hopes of a sweep. Although it was an ugly, ugly game, Kevin Love's injury is disconcerting. We must stay positive!

Although he's wearing a Kyrie jersey, Louie clearly LOVES LeBron.

Great friends and Cavs win 101-93

4 down...12 to go

Bring on Chicago.