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LeBron delivers on first NBA title as Heat cruise past Thunder (+video)

The Miami Heat got 20+ points from four players last night, including NBA Finals MVP LeBron James, to win their second NBA title by defeating the Oklahoma City Thunder, 121-106.

By Christopher HartmanContributor / June 22, 2012

The Miami Heat's LeBron James sits between the Larry O'Brien NBA Championship Trophy, left, and the most valuable player trophy after Game 5 of the NBA finals basketball series against the Oklahoma City Thunder, early Friday, June 22, in Miami.

Lynne Sladky/AP



The Heat began Game 5 last night in a patient fashion. But after trailing the Oklahoma City Thunder with just under five minutes remaining in the first period, Miami began pulling away in what would eventually amount to a 121-106 rout to win its second NBA title since the 2005-2006 season, four games to one.

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It was also the first championship for the Heat’s “Big Three” assemblage of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh since they joined forces in July of 2010. The Heat, leading the Thunder for most of the way, expanded a 59-49 halftime lead to 24 points by the end of the third (it was as many as 26 in one instance).

Asked following the game by ESPN’s Stuart Scott what the most hurtful comment made about him by the news media had been since his mediocre Finals appearance last season, James was thoughtful and then replied being called “selfish.” In light of his 26 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds last night, it would appear that unfortunate characterization was a bit misplaced.

The Heat posted an overwhelmingly dominant offensive performance, and particularly from the three-point arc, where they went 14 of 26 for a mammoth 54% shooting percentage. By contrast, Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook, who scored a team-high 43 points in Game 4, could only hit 4 of 20 shots from the field (he wound up with 19 points on the night), though teammate James Harden rebounded from a miserable eight points in the last game to score 19 last night.

But even with Kevin Durant, Westbrook and Harden combining for 70 points, they just couldn’t keep pace with the Heat, who aside from their 3-point percentage, were hitting on all cylinders in hitting 52 percent of their field goals and 82% of their foul shots. In fact, Miami had already crossed the “century mark” less than two minutes into the fourth quarter.


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