James leads Heat to NBA title
LeBron James hugs Dywane Wade Thursday night as the finals seconds tick off the clock.
June 22nd, 2012
12:18 AM ET

James leads Heat to NBA title

The Miami Heat defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder 121-106 Thursday night in Miami to win the NBA championship in five games.

League MVP LeBron James scored 26 points, and had 11 rebounds and 13 assists for Miami. Chris Bosh scored 24 points and Dwyane Wade 20 for the Heat.

Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant led all scorers with 32 points.

Photos: NBA Finals Game 5

It was James' first title since signing with the Heat as a free agent in 2010. James won two MVP awards over seven seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers but no NBA titles. James was drafted by Cleveland out of high school in nearby Akron, Ohio.

SI: LeBron earns validation, place in history with first championship

"This is a dream come true for me. This is definitely when it pays off," James said after the game. James was named the series MVP.

The Heat lost last year's finals to the Dallas Mavericks.

"We had to go through last year," Wade said after the game, according to NBA.com. "As much as it hurt, we had to experience it to get here, this season."

The Heat, who won four games straight to win the best-of-seven series, took a lead early in the game and never let up, leading by 25 points in the final minutes of the third quarter.

Thunder coach Scott Brooks said his young team will learn from the finals experience.

"I think when you play against the best, you learn. You don't get better by playing bad teams," Brooks said. "We've played against the best three teams in the last few years and we've learned."

Durant had a game-high 32 points but said losing in the finals is the hardest thing he and his team have been through.

SI: Finals failure will prove necessary for Durant, Thunder's development

"It's tough, that's the only way to explain it. As a whole I'm proud of the guys for how we've fought all season," Durant said. "I wouldn't want to play for anyone else or any other city."

soundoff (429 Responses)
  1. G. JONES

    Little league or Pro –basketball is still a game, nothing more or nothing less.

    June 22, 2012 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Greek American

    Yeah, never seen an algebra equation because from the time that they could walk, they spent every waking hour on practicing and perfecting their sport. It doesn't take an algebra equation to figure out that you can become a multi-millionaire right out of high school if you're this good, and skip college. So spare me the talk about athletes and what they do as somehow being easy and for the weak minded. You would make the same choice, that is, if you even had the ability to bounce a basketball.

    June 25, 2012 at 10:09 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Greek American

    IMO, Danny Gilbert, like many other team owners, only really cares about making money. I don't think he knows much about basketball either. He rode the LeBron money train as long as he could, and when it jumped the tracks, he acted like a classless fool. Mr. Gilbert, please go back to your business of basically being a slumlord and leave the sports to professionals. You should give the HEAT and its owner credit, as the team is "engineered to amaze."

    June 25, 2012 at 10:11 pm | Report abuse |
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