Game 5 of Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Miami Heat: Live Coverage and Analysis
So who will emerge victorious from this battle of the gold? Will LeBron James and the Miami Heat raise the Big Three's first banner?
Or will Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder give themselves a chance to accomplish the same feat while at home?
Bleacher Report brings you the best live coverage and analysis on the net!
Whether you love the Miami Heat, hate them or lack an opinion, evaluate this for what it was: one of the greatest postseason runs in the hitstory of this great league. From young coaches looking to prove their worth to star players with everything to lose and even more to gain, there is nothing to feel but excitement.
With all of this being noted, I painfully sign off for the last time this season. It was a blessing to report and cover games for the Bleacher Report community and a pure honor to have you all as readers. Until next season, so long and thank you for the memories.
What a year.
2012 NBA Champions: Miami Heat
You can't help but respect and admire the players from both sides. Each and every player gave hugs and congratulations to each other on an unbelievable season and an even better NBA Finals.
Kevin Durant is hugging his mother and letting the emotions pour out. Nothing to feel bad about for him. 32 points and 11 rebounds.
Miami Heat Leaders
Points: 26 - LeBron James
Rebounds: 11 - LeBron James
Assists: 13 - Mario Chalmers
Steals: 2 - Dwyane Wade & Mario Chalmers
Blocks: 3 - Dwyane Wade
Oklahoma City Thunder Leaders
Points: 32 - Kevin Durant
Rebounds: 11 - Kevin Durant
Assists: 6 - Russell Westbrook
Steals: 2 - Three Tied
Blocks: 2 - Serge Ibaka
It's finally happened, folks. LeBron James has finally won an NBA Championship.
To truly put this into perspective, this is a ring for the entire Miami Heat franchise. The most highly-criticized unit in NBA history has overcome adversity in countless forms. From postseason deficits to heartbreaking injuries.
Outstanding run by an incredible franchise.
End of the Game: Oklahoma City Thunder 106 - 121 Miami Heat
And the moment is ruined by LeBron James taking off his headband.
The Miami starters are being taken off of the floor and this crowd is going wild. Unbelievable performance by the Miami Heat. Absolutely outstanding.
LeBron James hugs Mike Miller with a giant smile on his face. The ring is finally arriving.
Fourth Quarter, 2:19 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 99 - 118 Miami Heat
Both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook have hit the bench and this one is all but over.
This was an outstanding run by the youngest core in the NBA. When your four best players are either 22 or 23-years-old, there is nothing to feel but pride for how far you've made it. Keep your heads high, OKC, you've made history in your own way.
Fourth Quarter, 4:00 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 94 - 114 Miami Heat
Mike Miller hobbled his way to 23 points on 7-of-8 shooting from beyond the arc. He leaves the floor and deserved the standing ovation he received.
LeBron James may be the Finals MVP, but Game 5 has belonged to Mike Miller.
Fourth Quarter, 4:50 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 89 - Miami Heat 111
Miami is the better team on defense and offense. Quite frankly, they have the right to claim they possess the best two players in the NBA.
You have to love Kevin Durant, but Dwyane Wade's defensive prowess and offensive tenacity is unmatched. Don't forget that a year ago today, we were arguing that it was Wade who was better than James.
This team was assembled and hyped for a reason. Now, they've backed it up.
Dwyane Wade out-hustles three Thunder defenders for the offensive rebound and puts it in. Russell Westbrook, meanwhile, is 4-of-20 from the field.
Just don't think that his shooting is the reason OKC is losing. He's been the only reliable scorer besides Durant as he's reached the line at will.
Take it for what it is, but the Oklahoma City Thunder have gone on a nice run and cut the lead from 27 to 20. Kevin Durant has found his stroke and confidence, while the Thunder's offense is finally in rhythm.
Can it be done? Can the Thunder pull off the comeback?
Derek Fisher connects on the three and the Thunder are actually running their offense with an end goal. It just appears to be too little too late.
Can the Thunder pull off this historic comeback? Or is this one in the bag? Hit the comments section and let us know.
LeBron James draws chants of "MVP!" For once, fans chanting that actually makes sense.
Fourth Quarter, 9:33 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 79 - 104 Miami Heat
To throw salt on the wound, Kevin Durant comes up in pain after going knee-to-knee with LeBron James. He responds well by grabbing his 10th rebound and drawing a foul. He hits both free throws.
If only the rest of the team were playing as well as Durant.
Fourth Quarter, 10:00 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 79 - 101 Miami Heat
Mike Miller with another three-pointer! 7-of-7 from distance! You may never hear about it again, but this is one of the greatest NBA Finals performances of all-time.
12 minutes until the Miami Heat go home with a championship ring. Mike Miller decided to make sure that happens after hitting another three.
That's 6-of-6 from distance. Mike Miller is the Game 5 MVP.
Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook will not quit but they're alone. Miami is just too good and too sharp from distance. What a brutal game to watch if you're an Oklahoma City fan.
Miami Heat Leaders
Points: 22 - Chris Bosh
Rebounds: 7 - Chris Bosh & LeBron James
Assists: 11 - LeBron James
Steals: 2 - Mario Chalmers
Blocks: 2 - Three Tied
Oklahoma City Thunder Leaders
Points: 26 - Kevin Durant
Rebounds: 9 - Kevin Durant
Assists: 5 - Russell Westbrook
Steals: 2 - James Harden & Russell Westbrook
Blocks: 2 - Serge Ibaka
Through his first eight years in the league, LeBron James was a young man who had been given the world. His hometown team drafted him first overall, the world anointed him the best before he'd proven a thing and basketball was nothing but a game.
In year nine, James has realized that this isn't just about having fun. This is both a career and a business, something you cannot take for granted. That is the direct reason for his improvements this season.
A truly phenomenal players who we should feel blessed to witness.
End of the Third Quarter: Oklahoma City Thunder 71 - 95 Miami Heat
Put the kids to sleep. This one has gotten ugly.
The immaturity and frustration of the Oklahoma City Thunder is just too much to overcome. When you tack on the fact that Miami is hitting everything they throw up, it just isn't a competition anymore.
Dwyane Wade with a beautiful And-One.
Third Quarter, 1:23 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 67 - 93 Miami Heat
Chris Bosh knocks down the three. Serge Ibaka responds by shoving Bosh in the back.
Mike Miller then hits his fifth three-pointer of the game.
Third Quarter, 2:43 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 65 - 90 Miami Heat
Standing in place and passing the ball is not offense. It's basketball suicide.
Oklahoma City has been beaten from the opening tip. LeBron James is beginning to close this thing out.
Third Quarter, 3:54 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 63 - 82 Miami Heat
You know that moment in a blowout where a team loses their resolve and their opponent puts their foot on the gas pedal? It's happening.
Third Quarter, 4:43 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 63 - Miami Heat 80
Derek Fisher just received a flagrant foul for standing in front of LeBron James as he entered the paint in transition.
In the words of Jeff Van Gundy, "Are you kidding me?! That's a flagrant?!"
Russell Westbrook misses the driving layup and the blame has to rest on Scott Brooks' shoulders tonight. The Oklahoma City Thunder appear to have no gameplan on offense and are just dribbling their way into the paint and hoping for the best.
LeBron James carried the Heat through the first four games. Tonight, it's Chris Bosh and the supporting cast who have stepped up and taken over.
Kendrick Perkins, meanwhile, just committed his fifth foul. To be perfectly honest, that's a good thing for OKC. He has done nothing but damage their quality of play throughout the entirety of the NBA Finals.
The smaller the lineup, the greater the success. Scott Brooks must learn that names are irrelevant when you're drawing up a gameplan. Bench the guy if he's not helping.
Third Quarter, 5:32 remaining: Oklahoma City Thunder 63 - 75 Miami Heat
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