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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Litke: Supporting cast provides difference for James

History is rarely this neat. We’ve been browbeating LeBron James for nearly two years, but a few minutes at the end of Game 4 was all it took to prove he knew what he was doing all along. All those Cleveland Cavaliers teams that James single-handedly carried into the playoffs couldn’t win enough games with him playing his absolute best.

Heat president Riley receives Daly award

MIAMI – Pat Riley was walking out of Chuck Daly’s hospital room in 2009, got to the doorway and turned around for another word from his longtime colleague, rival and friend. Riley remembers it vividly.

Heat close within one victory of NBA championship

MIAMI – LeBron James could hardly stand, certainly couldn’t run. Good thing all he needed to do was shoot. Better get well fast, James. You’re one win away from the biggest party of your life.

James gets Miami even with Oklahoma City in NBA Finals

OKLAHOMA CITY – This was Eastern Conference toughness. This was Pat Riley hammer-and-anvil basketball. This was LeBron James finally asserting his brutish and ridiculously unstoppable toughness. Stealing the momentum of the NBA Finals with three consecutive games coming up in Miami, the Heat defeated the Thunder 100-96 on Thursday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena to tie the best-of-7 series at 1-1.

To the Finals: Heat top Celtics 101-88 in Game 7

MIAMI – LeBron James finally got a Game 7 victory, on his third try. Next up, the NBA finals – and his third try at that elusive first championship. A year after watching someone else celebrate on their home floor, the Miami Heat were the ones dancing at midcourt.

Miami spoils Dallas’ party

DALLAS – While Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks were on the court celebrating the championship they won over LeBron James and Dwyane Wade last season, the Miami Heat were gathered in another part of the building. It wasn’t because they dreaded watching the ceremony, they insisted.

Wade, James close as brothers

MIAMI – Dwyane Wade and LeBron James are known to bicker like brothers. They screamed at one another more than once during Miami Heat playoff games last season. And when they’re on opposite teams in practice, they attack the other like they would any opponent. Now they’re closer than ever.

Mavericks earn finals vindication

MIAMI – For Dirk Nowitzki, the résumé is complete. He’s an NBA champion. For LeBron James, the agonizing wait continues for at least one more year.

LeBron hurt Heat down stretch

MIAMI – Good thing LeBron James had that big party when he arrived here last summer. For now, that’s the only celebration he gets in Miami.

Mavericks stop Heat to move within one win of title

DALLAS – Dirk Nowitzki thrust both arms in the air, a sea of blue screaming around him and the Dallas Mavericks finally ahead in the close NBA finals. Now it really is “now or never” for LeBron James and the Miami Heat.

Wade content with lead

DALLAS – A chance for another championship ahead of him, Dwyane Wade refused to look back. No, he said, the answer as quick and forceful as his first step to the basket. He doesn’t consider that the Miami Heat should have a 3-0 lead in the NBA finals.

Heat take 2-1 finals lead over Mavericks

DALLAS — Dwyane Wade kept soaring and scoring, doing everything he could to get the Miami Heat a crucial win toward an NBA title. Chris Bosh and Udonis Haslem provided the final push to seal the key victory. Bosh made a 16-foot, go-ahead jumper from the baseline with 39.6 seconds left and Haslem pestered Dirk Nowitzki the rest of the way as the Heat held on for an 88-86 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday night for a 2-1 lead in the NBA finals.

Heat’s Haslem, Miller have ‘unfinished business’ in NBA finals

DALLAS – At the time, Udonis Haslem was accustomed to being spoiled at the University of Florida. There, he had a training staff available to provide whatever he needed. That changed when he left college and played professionally for one season in France. Haslem quickly learned he wasn’t in Gainesville when there was no trainer in the locker room to tape his ankle before the game.

Carryover from Miami Heat’s Game 2 collapse in NBA finals a key question

DALLAS – Dwyane Wade knows in the NBA finals, collapses can carry over. He was in the Dirk Nowitzki role five years ago, summoning a desperate charge to rescue a team that was down but refused to go out. A furious fourth-quarter rally saved the Heat from a 3-0 deficit and they never looked back, winning four straight to beat Dallas.

Big Three part of the Big Collapse

MIAMI – It was simply the biggest collapse on the biggest stage, and even the Big 3 were utterly helpless to stop it. In a six-minute span that caved in on Miami like a massive sinkhole Thursday night, the Heat saw their NBA championship hopes turn perilous. Dallas 95, Miami 93.