Image: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

Bruh. There are beatdowns, and then are epic humiliations that will live on for the rest of sports history. 

That’s what we witnessed on Friday night as LeBron James and the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers handed the Boston Celtics an old school, backyard woodshed ass whuppin’ that seems simultaneously effortless yet packed with the unrelenting intensity of someone taking out all their revenge fantasies on a hapless victim of circumstance. 

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. The Celtics had just won a hard fought 7-game series against the Washington Wizards to reach the Eastern Conference Finals, supposedly demonstrating the team’s mettle during moments of adversity. 

That’s why, when the Cavaliers won their first game against the Celtics in dominant fashion, no one batted an eye — of course the well-rested Cavs defeated the worn out Celtics who were still recovering from the previous series. The Celtics just needed a game to acclimate themselves and prove to everyone they were as legit as their Eastern Conference No. 1 seed ranking indicated, right? 

Oh… Oh dear. Here comes LeBron James literally crip walking into the arena. 

That should have been all the hint the Celtics needed, but they still came out and played the game anyway. 

What followed was a slow motion car wreck with LeBron and crew playing the role of unsexy yet incredibly efficient city bus totaling the tiny, two-seater electric Smart car led by the plucky 5’9 point guard Isaiah Thomas. The result was a halftime score that broke the history books at 72 to 31, a 41-point lead that ranks as the largest halftime lead in NBA playoffs history. Of all time. 

But this time, the usual heroic second half efforts of Isaiah Thomas wouldn’t be there to save the Celtics, as Thomas was pulled from the game with a deep soul bruise hip injury. 

For some reason, the Celtics’ professorial wunderkind coach Brad Stevens decided to let rookie Jaylen Brown guard LeBron, a mistake that the Ohio born superstar made Steven pay for with three pointers, blocks, dunks, and a knowing smirk. 

Before the game, when asked about his impending matchup with LeBron, Brown said, “LeBron’s a good player, but I look at him as just a regular guy.” Yeah, okay buddy. The aftermath of Brown’s poorly chosen words was an embarrassment so large that social media decided to make Brown’s face the new crying Jordan meme. 

From J.R. Smith’s incredibly disrespectful “sweeping” motion during one play, to the Cavs bench celebrating and egging the team on even when the lead hit 50, the destruction of the Celtics was thorough and convincing enough to lead most to believe the series is already over, even though there are at least two more games to play. 

At this point, the only thing the Celtics can celebrate is winning the NBA lottery with the number one pick. And based on last night’s performance, it looks like they absolutely need it.  

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