Is LeBron James’ Legacy On The Line In Game 7?

LeBron James
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If LeBron James leads the Cavaliers to a victory Sunday night in Game 7 of the NBA Finals, Cleveland will be the first team in Finals history to come back from a 3-1 deficit. James will assuredly win his third Finals MVP award and his third title overall, and he would break the city of Cleveland’s 52-year championship drought, becoming a hero to Ohioans for as long as he lives.

If he loses, he will drop to just 2-5 in Finals appearances, including his third straight defeat. He will also be two years into his return to Cleveland and despite having All-Stars like Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love on board (as well as his preferred coach Tyronn Lue), he will still not have a championship to show for it and will have to go back to the drawing board next season.

So, it’s not an exaggeration to say that this is the biggest game in LeBron’s career, and it will have a huge impact on his place in the history books. With that being said, LeBron himself doesn’t think a win or a loss will define his legacy.

He’s right, of course, as LeBron will go down as one of the best players ever whether he ends his career with two championships or seven. Plus, it’s not like this is his last chance. At 31, there is still plenty of years left for James, and he could very well be in this same spot next year even if he comes up short this time around.

Still, while this one game certainly doesn’t define LeBron’s legacy, it will shift the narrative one way or the other in a lot of people’s minds whether he likes it or not. Those who question his greatness will be permanently silenced with an epic performance and a win, but a loss would only make the noise louder despite his greatness throughout this year’s playoffs.

Either way, LeBron James will be (unfairly) defined for the time being based on what happens on Sunday night, making the stakes even greater for Game 7.