WKYC sports director Jim Donovan had a front row seat to the agony of The Drive, The Fumble, The Shot and the Cleveland Indians’ Game 7 loss to the Florida Marlins in the 1997 World Series. So the longtime voice of the Cleveland Browns had his doubts when the Cleveland Cavaliers faced a 2-0 deficit against the Golden State Warriors. “I didn’t even know if they were going to win a game,” says Donovan, whose confidence rose when the Cavs forced the deciding game. “But when you have the best player going into a Game 7, you’ve got a great chance.” Donovan ended up with a pretty good seat for the Cavs victory parade — overlooking Mall B from the terrace of the Hilton Cleveland Downtown.
I was in the editing room getting ready to go on the air when Kyrie Irving hit that 3-point shot. I took a step back from the monitor and thought, Son of a gun, this is really going to happen. I can remember how devastating it was when the Indians lost that World Series Game 7 in Florida. I had always wondered what it would be like to be on the other side of the scoreboard. Would I have liked to be in the position to call that game? Absolutely. As I walk my dogs around Hinckley Lake, I think, I’ve called the Browns winning the Super Bowl about 100 times. The people walking by me think I’m a lunatic. On the morning of the [Cavs] parade, I left my house at 7:30 a.m. Two hours later, I had six minutes before I was going on the air, and I’m trying to find a place to stash my car. I paid $25 to park near [FirstEnergy] Stadium. I would have paid $250 at that point. Then I ran all the way up the hill to make it to our set at the Hilton.