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Game 7 of the 2015-16 NBA Finals will go down as one of the most important games in Cleveland sports history, as the Cavaliers ended the city’s 52-year title drought with the franchise’s first championship.
“I was rewatching the games and talking to my teammates about it, sending them snapchats of me watching,” Irving told ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. “I got chills. My stomach was dropping knowing the ball is going in but knowing exactly, emotionally how I felt at the time. It still gets me excited thinking about it. It’s such a huge moment for not only Cleveland but our team, our families, our friends.”
The same goes for Iman Shumpert, who still gets a thrill out of watching his squad complete the historic 3-1 comeback over the greatest regular-season team of all time.
“I’ve watched it over and over,” he said. “Oh, it was enjoyable.”
LeBron James took home Finals MVP honors that day, with his chase-down block of Andre Iguodala playing just as much a part in Cleveland’s win as Irving’s pivotal bucket. While he admitted to catching the action “a few times” when it was on NBA TV, The King won’t allow himself to get complacent, as he knows how difficult it’s going to be for the Cavaliers to repeat.
“That moment will never be forgotten,” James said. “It will go down in history. I always look forward. I try not to dwell in the past. There are going to be so many challenges for us. We have to be mentally focused. And we will.”