Thursday, May 28, 2009

You say there's still a chance?

Who would have thought at the end of April that by the end of May the Indians would have a better chance of winning the World Series than the Cavs do of winning the NBA Finals?

It's sad, but it's true. It's also Cleveland.

With the Cavs standing on the edge of the cliff as they enter tonight's Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals down 3-1 against the Orlando Magic, LeBron James has about as much chance of making a dunk in next week's NBA Finals as he does of getting hemorrhoids. No, really, he does -- about a 4.4% chance for either one.

Now, there's still a better chance that LeBron makes the NBA Finals than of him cutting himself shaving today (.01%) or of hurting himself while tooling around on his Cub Cadet (.027%) or of catching a foul ball at a Tribe game while wearing a Yankees hat (.17%), but only because the chances of those things happening are more remote than the North Pole.

Meanwhile, Baseball Prospectus's postseason odds report gives the Indians a 17.8% chance of winning the AL Central. And that's before today's game, which they are leading

Cleveland fans can take solace in the fact that one of the eight teams (out of 182) to have blown a 3-1 NBA series lead was the Orlando Magic. Cleveland fans cannot take solace in the fact that it was the 2003 Orlando Magic, whose only connection to to today's edition is the logo. Heck, that team even featured Shawn Kemp, playing his final season. They also won just 42 games and snuck into the playoffs as a No. 8 seed. They were eventually worn down by the top-seeded and eventual NBA champion Detroit Pistons.

In fact, four of the teams that came back from 3-1 deficits did eventually win the NBA title. So there's that to look forward to if the Cavs do buck the odds. Yeah, a sports championship to look forward to in Cleveland. That and 500 straight sunny days.

Instead, when the morning light comes, we might have to grab hold of that 17.8% chance the Indians have of winning the division like it's the last lifejacket and our boat's going down in the middle of Lake Erie. Because it is. And who would have believed that a month ago, when the Indians were finishing April with an 8-14 record -- hey, they have a losing record for May, too! -- while the Cavs were resting after a sweep of the Pistons.

No one was thinking about living in Cleveland then. They sure are now.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am sooooo glad you are back! Please don't ever stop writing. Cleveland fans need this dose of reality.