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The Bernstein Brief: The Best Way To Win

By Dan Bernstein-- senior columnist

(CBS) That it didn't have to be perfect or pretty is just right for a team that was too good to care.

The pressure never exceeded the pleasure, even when manager Joe Maddon himself added as much to the former as the latter. It was all too predictably squandered until it wasn't, because the 2016 Cubs had no interest in narratives and never did.

Trailing in the ninth against the Giants, down 2-1 against the Dodgers, in 3-1 hole in the World Series to the Indians on the road and then blowing a 5-1 lead in Game 7 and given every possible opportunity to live down to the worst of expectations, they just won anyway, outlasting Cleveland in an 8-7 win in a Game 7 of the World Series that took 10 innings on Wednesday night at Progressive Field.

Kris Bryant smiled as he approached the bouncing ball that became the final out to clinch their championship, literally laughing in the face of dark history. It was the best encapsulation of this team's real and innocent defiance, both their disdain for outside burdens and genuine joy in and of every moment.

He knew what was happening, and made it so. He can do that, as the best player on the best team.

And here so many thought for so long that so much had to align, that it all had to be arranged with no margin for error. That wasn't the case, it turned out, because the Cubs were so good.

Rough around the edges befitted the World Series champion 2016 Chicago Cubs, a team of such indomitable youth and yet a team for the ages.

Dan Bernstein is a co-host of 670 The Score's "Boers and Bernstein Show" in afternoon drive. You can follow him on Twitter  @dan_bernstein and read more of his columns here.

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