Thursday, June 21, 2012

2012 NBA Finals: Oklahoma City Thunder Vs Miami Heat, Game 5 Oklahoma City Thunder 106, Miami Heat 121

Miami heat won Game 5, 121–106, to win the trophy and the series, four games to one. OKC Thunder kept it close in the first half, but they were outscored by 14 in the third quarter, with Miami leading as much as 27 at one point. Miami was powered by strong performances of the big three LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh. Mike Miller, had a 7 for 8 for three-point performance with 23 points. Miller replaced Wade because Wade was in foul trouble in the first half, with Coach Erik Spoelstra telling the variously-injured veteran the Heat just needed him to hold the fort until the 2nd quarter began; when Miller hit two three-pointers, Spoelstra asked him if he could keep playing and Miller said yes, leading to 23 minutes on the court that were critical in blowing the game open for Miami. The team tied an NBA Finals record for most 3-pointers in a game with 14. With three minutes remaining in the game, both teams took their starters out of the game, with the Heat still leading by more than 20 points. With their Game 5 win, the Heat won their second NBA championship in team history, and the first for several Heat players, including James, who was named the NBA Finals MVP after averaging 28.6 points, 10.2 rebounds and 7.4 assists in the finals, capping it all off with his first triple double of the season in the final game.

For the Thunder, Kevin Durant had 32 points, and 11 rebounds; Russell Westbrook had 19 points and 6 assists; and James Harden led the bench with 19 points, 5 assists, and 4 rebounds.

The Heat became just the third home team to sweep the middle three games of a Finals series since the NBA switched to the 2–3–2 format in 1985, the other two being their 2006 team and the 2004 Detroit Pistons. They also joined the 2004 Pistons and 1995 Houston Rockets as the only lower seeded team to win the Finals in 5 games or less. In addition, they became the first team to win the NBA Finals after trailing in three different series in the postseason, 1–2 against Indiana, 2–3 against Boston, and 0–1 against Oklahoma City. Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem are the only Heat players to win both 2006 and 2012 NBA championships for the Miami Heat, while head coach Erik Spoelstra earned a 2nd ring to go with the one he earned as an assistant for the 2006 team. The Heat's second title also made them the first franchise in the NBA's Southeast Division with multiple titles (the Atlanta Hawks won the title in 1958 while they were based in St. Louis, and the Washington Wizards won in 1978, while the Orlando Magic and Charlotte Bobcats have not won any NBA titles as of 2013) and they remain the only expansion team in the past 25 years to ever win a title, let alone two.

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