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NBA Finals: Heat routs Thunder in Game 5 to claim NBA title

LeBron James capped his title bid with 26 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds, Chris Bosh added 23 points, Dwyane Wade scored 20 points and the Heat finished off the Thunder in Game 5 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night, winning 121-106.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: June 21, 2012

Oklahoma City suffered from slow starts, including a back-breaking 18-2 hole in Game 2. Mental lapses littered this matchup, mostly by the Thunder, which fouled 3-point shooters in the act, missed a mountain of free throws and had untimely turnovers.

“Our effort was there, but things just didn't go our way,” said Kendrick Perkins.

Harden, the league's Sixth Man of the Year, didn't show up to the series, which plagued the Thunder and its perceived depth advantage. Harden averaged just 12.4 points on 37.5 percent shooting.

Along the way, Durant was fantastic but in Games 3 and 4 couldn't quite be the closer that we've known him to be. Both those games went Miami's way. After scoring a combined 33 points on 11-for-19 shooting in the fourth quarters of Games 1 and 2, Durant scored only 10 points on 4-for-9 shooting with four turnovers in Games 3 and 4.

Above all, LeBron James happened.

The regular-season MVP was phenomenal all series, atoning for his vanishing act on this stage a year ago by torching the Thunder like no one else has this postseason.

James averaged 28.6 points on 47.2 percent shooting along with 10.2 rebounds and 7.4 assists en route to Finals MVP honors. In his final act, he posted a triple-double with 26 points, 11 rebounds and 13 assists.

“He played extremely well. …You could just tell he was very focused from the beginning of the season,” Durant said. “It was a storybook season for him.”

Not so much for the Thunder, however fun this ride might have been.

“We made it to the Finals, which was cool for us,” Durant said. “But we didn't want to just make it there.”

by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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