Big Ben a big part of Cavs' success

“Let’s make this perfectly clear: The Cleveland Cavaliers are Lebron James’ team. He is their superstar, their leader, and sans Kobe Bryant, the best player in the game. King James is not only the face of the wine and gold for the time being, but, regardless of whether or not he’s still here after 2010, will forever be the most recognizable player in franchise history.”

Let’s make this perfectly clear: The Cleveland Cavaliers are Lebron James’ team. He is their superstar, their leader, and sans Kobe Bryant, the best player in the game. King James is not only the face of the wine and gold for the time being, but, regardless of whether or not he’s still here after 2010, will forever be the most recognizable player in franchise history.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Mark Price but there was never a giant banner bearing his image in the middle of downtown Cleveland.

All Lebron has ever needed was that one piece of the puzzle to send him from great player to NBA Champion. The Pippen to his Jordan if you will.

Hint: It wasn’t Larry Hughes.

The biggest missing piece of the puzzle turned out to be Big Ben.

How can someone honestly say a guy who averages 3 measly points a night is the key to a championship? Surprisingly, he’s only fourth on the team with 6.6 rebounds per contest. What makes that statement even more ludicrous is the fact that since Wallace went down with a fractured right fibula Feb. 26, the Cavs have compiled a 5-1 record.

Now let’s quit talking about what’s on paper and look at what’s happening on the court.

For starters, Big Ben’s style of play resembles that of a great offensive lineman, if you don’t hear about him he’s doing his job.

Yes, Varejao has stepped up offensive game considerably, but all the flopping in the world won’t make up for Big Ben’s loss.

And who isn’t happy to see Joe Smith back in Cleveland? Unfortunately he does not provide the defensive presence Wallace does.

Look at Z. He plays entirely outside of the paint. Do you ever see Dwight Howard attempt to nail a long deuce? Do you find it odd that Shaq has hit exactly ONE 3-pointer in his career?

It’s because centers in today’s game need to be a physical force inside, not at the 3-point line. And let’s be honest, the term midget better describes the 7’3 Ilgauskas than physical force does.

Finally, look no further than this past week’s match-up in Boston for the most glaring example of how futile the Cavs down-low game can be without the best ‘fro in the game.

Forget Shaq or Dwight Howard, the three-headed monster that is Glen Davis, Leon Powe, and Kendrick Perkins torched Cleveland for a combine forty points, 20 of which from Powe alone.

And I know the common response from most Cavs fans would be: Yeah, but that’s Boston.

Ummm, didn’t the Celtics achieve last year what we in Cleveland are trying to come away this season?

Yes, that is Boston. And if the Cavs want to win a title, it’s more than likely Boston they’re going to have to beat down the road.

Now, I’m not saying it’s time to throw in the towel.

However I am saying that while he may earn nearly $5 million in salary for each point he averages, the Cavaliers are not the same, nor are they a championship team minus Ben Wallace.