Thursday, June 6 the begin in Miami for the third-straight year. The Miami Heat have won the Eastern Conference and will play for the Larry O’Brien Trophy against the San Antonio Spurs.
Miami was pushed to the limit a seventh and decisive game against the Indiana Pacers. The Heat dominated game seven, winning 99-74.
To win the series four games to three, the Pacers, you might recall, had a one-point lead in game one with two seconds left and allowed LeBron James to catch an inbound pass and drive for a game-winning lay-up. The two teams played 10 games during the regular and post season; Miami won five, Indiana won five. During the regular season, the Spurs and Heat played twice with the Heat winning both games.
The Spurs were fined $250,000 by NBA Commissioner David Stern because Gregg Popovich, head coach of the Spurs, held four of his stars out of the game.
San Antonio has won four NBA titles since 1999, the last being 2007 when they swept Cleveland and LeBron James 4-0. Tony Parker was the MVP of the Finals that year. Miami has won two NBA titles in 2006 and 2012. Last year, James was the MVP of the Finals.
The best-of-seven Finals will feature the controversial 2-3-2 format with Miami, winner of 66 games in the regular season, holding the home court. The Spurs were 58-24 in the regular season and won the Western Conference, beating Los Angeles, Golden State and Memphis. The Spurs have been waiting for almost two weeks and are 12-2 in the playoffs.
The Heat are 12-4. This should be a great NBA Finals: Miami’s big three with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh vs. Tony Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobli of the Spurs.
I believe the Spurs will attack the Heat with Parker and control the games. I also believe this is the best defensive Spurs team I’ve seen — they are bigger than the Miami team and are rested. I like the Spurs in six.
This is the last hurrah for longtime NBA Commissioner Stern — he plans to resign after these Finals.
Larry Fitzgerald can be heard weekday mornings on KMOJ Radio 89.9 FM at 8:25 am, on WDGY-AM 740 Monday-Friday at 12:17 pm and 4:17 pm, and at www.Gamedaygold.com. He also commentates on sports 7-8 pm on Almanac (TPT channel 2). Follow him on Twitter at FitzBeatSr. Larry welcomes reader responses to info@lar ry-fitzgerald.com, or visit www.Larry-Fitzgerald.com.