What an entertaining and hard fought series.
The Miami Heat have defeated the San Antonio Spurs 95-88 in Game 7 of the NBA Finals and claimed their second consecutive Championship.
LeBron James was superb. James finished the game with 37 points (12/23 FGs), 12 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, 8/8 at the free throw line, and 5/10 from beyond the arc.
James was 7/24 from deep in games 1 to 6 (29%); in Game 7 he was 5/10.
LeBron has now become the third player in NBA history to win back-to-back titles, and back-to-back MVP awards. The other two are Bill Russell and Michael Jordan.
James is also the second player in history to achieve back-to-back season MVPs and NBA Finals MVPs (Jordan is the other in 1991 and 1992).
James statistics for the 2013 NBA Finals: 25.3 points per game, shot 45% from the floor, 10.9 rebounds, and 7 assists.
Dywane Wade had 23 points (11/21 FGs), 10 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal and 2 blocks.
After having a quiet start to the series, going 6/19 from the floor, Shane Battier was a massive factor off the bench tying an NBA Finals Game 7 record of 6 3-pointers. Battier had 18 points and was 6/9 from 3-point territory in 29 minutes. Battier was an enormous force in games 6 and 7, hitting 9 of his final 13 shots from beyond the arc.
One again level scoring for the Spurs kept them in the game.
Tim Duncan 24 points, 12 rebounds, 2 assists, 4 steals and 1 block. Tim had a career best season at the free-throw line during the 2012-2013 regular season, and he continued that going a perfect 8/8 at the charity strike during Game 7.
Kawhi Leonard has established himself as a superstar. He finished the game with 19 points, 16 rebounds, 1 steal and 1 block. The 21-year old finished the series with 4 double-doubles; he had 6 during the regular season.
Tony Parker chipped in 10 points, but again struggled to get in any rhythm. Parker hit just 3 from 12, had 4 assists, and 3 steals.
Over the final two games of the NBA Finals the Frenchmen shot just 9/35 from the floor.
Manu Ginobili was more efficient, he finished with 18 points (6/12 FGs), 3 rebounds, and 5 assists, however Manu had a game high 4 turnovers; 2 in the fourth quarter. Manu’s ball security was shocking late in the series, with a combined total of 12 turnovers in the final two games.
After setting an NBA record for the most 3-pointers in a finals series, Danny Green went cold over the last 2 games. Green manage to hit 1/12 in Game 7 and finished with just 5 points, 5 rebounds, 2 steals and 1 block.
Both teams started poorly on the offensive end. Miami missed 5 of their first 7 shots, while the Spurs had 3 turnovers in the first 2:12.
At the end of quarter one, the Spurs had hit just 7/22 (31.8%), Miami was slightly better hitting 7/19 (36.8%).
San Antonio had an early 7-point buffer, however they missed 11 of their final 13 shots and gifted the Heat an 18-16 lead after one.
While Danny Green couldn’t buy a bucket, Shane Battier was knocking them down. Early in the second Shane was a perfect 3/3 from deep.
Game 6 hero, Ray Allen, was cold on the night going 0/4.
Ray Allen did manage to break Bill Russell’s record of the most Game 7s ever played in NBA history with 11. Bill won’t be too worried as his NBA Finals record of 40 rebounds is sure to stand forever. Not to mention his 10/0 record in the NBA Finals, or his incredible feat of 5/0 in Game 7’s in the NBA Finals.
Wade was controlling the offensive for Miami hitting 4 of his first 8 field goals. James was just 1/5 before he stormed on 6 points in just 1 minute of play. His 3-point play (14-second) and 3-pointer (25-second) gave James loads of confidence, and from here his unbelievable performance began.
At the half Miami had a 46-44 lead thanks to Wade’s 14 points and 6 rebounds, plus LeBron’s 15 points and 3 rebounds.
The Spurs shot just 35% from the floor in the fist half, however were right there thanks to their 8 steals, compared to Miami’s 3. Furthermore they dominated the paint with 24 points (10 more than Miami).
Early in the third Leonard picked up his double-double, and was doing everything he could to keep San Antonio motoring.
But with Green being 0/8, plus Wade and LeBron combining for 36 of Miami’s 41 points at one stage, the Heat held a slight lead.
Every time San Antonio looked out of it, they found a way to stay in the game. They showed unbelievable courage and determination.
The Spurs put on a quick 8 points through Leonard and Duncan, and looked like taking that momentum into the fourth quarter. However a brilliant effort from Mario Chalmers at the end of the third kept the energy with Miami.
The Spurs were still in it for the majority of the final quarter, however 5 turnovers in the first 6 minutes wasn’t helping their chances.
San Antonio kept backing off James, and he was making them pay.
Yet the resilient Spurs would answer back every time. First via a Tim Duncan’s 3-point play, then some desperate 3-pointers from Leonard and Ginobili.
A 2-point game with 30 second left, LeBron’s elbow jay was the dagger. (53-second mark)
Congratulations to the Miami Heat for winning the 2012-2013 NBA Championship.
What an epic season.
I guess we are all witnesses.