King James Leads Heat To NBA Title
Friday, June 22, 2012 at 3:19 PM
With 4:44 left to play in game 5 of the NBA Finals, Oklahoma City Thunder
star Kevin Durant sat on the OKC bench with a towel draped around his head. Yes, the OKC Thunder had “thrown in the towel”. The Miami Heat
destroyed the Thunder in the third quarter and could begin a joyous celebration wrapping up the NBA Finals with four minutes left in the game.
The Heat were able to finish in the Finals, something they couldn’t do in 2011 as they fell to the Dallas Mavericks in six games. LeBron James
, Dwyane Wade
, and Chris Bosh
were finally able to say “Not Zero” to the number of championships they would win in South Beach.
Anyone that thinks this series and playoffs were won by three players weren’t paying attention. Mr. Clutch, Mario Chalmers
made huge shots and had countless steals. Chalmers averaged over one steal per game and over 11 points per game during the Heat playoff run. Chalmers was always in the middle of scuffles with the other team and was always being chided by teammates including LeBron in the second half of game five.
and Shane Battier
consistently hit open three pointers and made the opposition pay for double teams on James and Wade. Miller scored 23 points in the final game despite looking like a senior citizen with aches and pains throughout his body. Battier played great defense and took numerous charges getting the Thunder in foul trouble.
James exorcised his demons and laid waste to his critics in leading the Heat to the title. LeBron put up with constant chatter from the media’s talking heads that he wasn’t clutch and that he would never win the “big one”. King James learned from his previous Finals losses in Cleveland and last year with the Heat with one superb game after another. LeBron became the leader on the court and in the scorebook. His unselfishness and brilliant floor game made his teammates better around him.
On Friday, James tweeted: "OM*G I think it just hit me, I'm a CHAMPION!! I AM a CHAMPION!!"
Yes LeBron, you are a champion! James cemented his championship with a triple double in game five, a fitting conclusion to his fabulous playoff run. LeBron topped off his regular season MVP with the Bill Russell Trophy as Playoffs MVP.
Wade was the original Heat member of the “Big Three” of James, Wade, and Bosh. He was the star of the franchise and the Finals MVP in 2006 as the Heat defeated the Dallas Mavericks in the Finals. Wade willingly subordinated his role as team leader and let LeBron run the show.
Wade showed some wear and tear on his 30 year old body during the playoff run with a balky knee that required draining. He even disappeared during a couple of games in the series with the Indiana Pacers. However, his play in the Finals was a great compliment to LeBron and he averaged almost 23 points per game in the playoffs with almost two steals per game.
Chris Bosh is the least heralded of the “Big Three” but the Heat sorely missed the big man as he fought off an abdominal strain suffered in the first game of the Pacers series. He came off the bench against the Celtics and finally started in game two of the Finals. Bosh gave the Heat the ability to spread the floor, allowing driving room for James and Wade. Bosh was deadly from outside and scored inside as well.
The Heat learned that championships are earned, not awarded. As long as they have the triumvirate of James, Wade, and Bosh, they will be a threat to win more championships but the supporting cast is vital to the ultimate legacy of the Heat.