Already a part of a surreal evening in downtown, and one that was 52 years in the making, the Cavaliers received their championship rings for winning the title against the Golden State Warriors in last June’s NBA Finals. After that, the franchise’s first championship banner was raised.
Fans were treated to replays of the Block, the Shot and the Stop, the three seminal moments from last season’s Game 7 triumph that have already been permanently etched in Cleveland fans’ psyche. And then finally, after commissioner Adam Silver handed the title ring to owner Dan Gilbert, and the rest of the Cavs’ staffers had been awarded theirs, Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving and LeBron James got to rejoice.
“Without you 20,000 fans,” James boomed,“ this would not be possible. This night, none of us will ever forget.”
At least from the Cavs’ perspective, it will be memorable for one other reason save for the NBA season officially getting underway. Gilbert, once handed the microphone, offered a challenge of sorts.
“There’s only one thing left to do,” Gilbert shouted. “Repeat.”
Despite the Cleveland Indians’ best efforts to overshadow their downtown neighbors, Tuesday, first and foremost, was the Cavaliers’ night.