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LeBron Returns - Public Enemy #1 Returns To Cleveland For First Time

It's been just under five months since LeBron James made a mockery of himself in 60 minutes worth of self promotion called 'The Decision'.  Since that moment, Cleveland Cavaliers fans have been looking toward Dec. 2, 2010 - the night LeBron James would return to Cleveland as a member of the Miami Heat.  It has been dissected, it has been analyzed.  There will be more security, more police, more precautions taken for LeBron's return than most dignitaries get.  In short, LeBron's return is must-see TV.  Everyone - except Phil Jackson - will be watching.

We've seen the Cavaliers play inspired ball this season - the opener against the Celtics comes to mind - but we've seen them get beat down as well, like the next night in Toronto.  The crowd will be jumping, the Cavs will have the support of nearly everyone all around the country.  The basketball gods will be smiling down on the Cavaliers too.  All that said, can they beat the three-headed monster of LeBron, D-Wade and Chris Bosh?

Luckily for Cleveland, Miami has struggled this season.  LeBron and D-Wade have yet to feel comfortable playing together.  LeBron has complained about minutes, he's complained about not having any fun and he has already questioned the ability of his head coach.  In short, the Heat, while being extremely talented, are a mess. They also will be playing the second of a back-to-back, having beat the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night.

The Cavaliers will be rested, and they will be healthy.  That didn't help much in a 19-point beatdown against Boston on Tuesday night, but it is obvious that Thursday's meeting with the Heat is weighing on the team.  In a lot of ways the guys have to want to get it over with and continue on with the season.  Perhaps that is best for the fans too.

The city of Cleveland is ready, the Cavaliers are ready.  LeBron and the Heat had better be ready.  

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.