VIDEO: King James Silences The Critics
There are rare moments in sports when we get a glimpse of greatness and one of those moments came on Thursday night in Boston.
With the Miami Heat facing the possibility of being bounced out of the Eastern Conference Finals, the team's main player stepped up his game in a way that we haven't seen for some time.
LeBron James, love him or hate him, showed us why he was crowned the 2011-2012 NBA MVP.
The challenge: beat the Celtics on their home court and force a Game 7 in Miami or lose and start the summer vacation, something King James is very familiar with.
But James showed he wasn't ready to throw in the towel on the series just yet, and put on quite the performance pouring in 45 points and 15 rebounds in the Heat's 98-79 victory over the stunned Celtics, who had no answers for him.
Now, we all know James is capable of putting on these stellar performances, but the thing is we've never seen it in a playoffs game especially when it mattered the most.
After losing Game 5 at home, questions started to rise about the Heat's future and speculation about what would happen with James and the other members of the Big Three, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, started to come up should the Heat be shown the exit.
But the instant James stepped on the floor in front of a rowdy Celtics crowd, there was a serious and focused look on his face. Gone was the smile and the wry grin that irritated those of us who weren't fans, replaced with an emotionless poker face right to the very end of the game.
You see even though he had silenced his critics, he didn't do it with the usual arrogance that we're used to seeing, and one can assume that he's trying not to get ahead of himself. Afterall, there's still a game to be played in this series to determine who will join the Oklahoma City Thunder in the NBA Finals.
So as much as we'd like to see the NBA's most popular villain fail at the one thing that's eluded him for the past nine seasons, winning a championship ring, we can't help but to take our hats off to him, even if it's just for one game.