The Miami Heat are the 2013 NBA Finals champions after defeating the San Antonio Spurs in a tight Game 7 meeting. The scoreboard read 95-88 at the end of four quarters, in favor of the Heat. LeBron James proved super clutch in the final minutes of the game as he finished with 37 points.
James had nine points in the fourth and he knocked down a huge jumper as the Spurs were creeping closer late in the game. Miami was unable to build a great lead at any point in the game, which is why the game went down to the closing minutes.
It looked as though Gregg Popovich screwed the matchups at the end of the game as he sat Tony Parker down with the Spurs trailing by four points with 25.9 seconds remaining on the clock. Manu Ginobili took the ball, drove to the basket and threw it up for Duncan, but James stepped in the way to pick up the steal. Duncan had a hard time in the closing minutes of the game. He missed a wide open layup that would have tied the game at 90.
With the victory, the Heat captured their second consecutive championship and their third in franchise history. Two down, only four more to go to catch Michael Jordan for James.
The first quarter was dictated by defense and poor shooting. The Heat received a boost as Battier made an appearance in the latter stages of the quarter. In the three minutes on the floor, Battier went 2-2 from three-point range and gave the Heat the lead while leading in scoring. San Antonio shot 32 percent from the floor, missing numerous shots after taking an 11-4 lead to start the game.
The Heat and Spurs committed seven turnovers combined, four by Miami and three by San Antonio. The Spurs had trouble handling the ball, but the Heat were the ones committing the turnovers as they added four more in the second quarter.
Miami had difficulties sinking threes, as they only went 5-14 from three-point range in the half. The Heat were able to keep a slim 46-44 lead at halftime despite missing threes and committing turnovers by shooting 40 percent from the floor.
Miami continued to lead despite adding having four more turnovers in the third quarter. The Heat were unable to find an offensive groove and the lead went back and forth. Mario Chalmers denied the Spurs a lead heading into the fourth quarter by hitting a three at the buzzer.
James had his moments throughout the game, especially his performance from behind the line. He hit five threes and put up 24 points in the second and third quarters. Helping James was Battier, who continued hitting his threes going 6-8 from the line. Battier finished the game with 18 points. It was a dramatic return for Battier as he struggled throughout the playoffs to find his shot.
The Spurs now have some questions to answer in regards to retaining Ginobili and the possible retirement of Tim Duncan They have a lot of young players, but Duncan has been a crucial part of this organization throughout his career.