Nobody was going anywhere, and they couldn’t have been happier.
They leaned out of windows and stood up through open sunroofs. Some climbed onto the roof of their vehicles, others crowded the beds of pickup trucks waving signs celebrating the Heat, along with a few Cuban flags.
They gestured toward revelers dancing on the sidewalk, everybody chanting, “Let’s go Heat!” and “Heat, champs, whoo!”
In Sunday’s paper – Don’t miss our commemorative Heat special section as we recap their march to the NBA title
A trumpeter next to the road blew the familiar bugle call, da-da-da-dun-da-da, “Charge!”
From the cars came the rhythmic clamor of pots and pans in sync with the honking horns. It was a beat that wouldn’t be heard in any other NBA city. It was Latin. It was the championship beat of Miami. It went on deep into the night.
— Craig Davis
‘Bron not biting
It was an apropos question for a final question of the Finals.
So as LeBron James was wrapping up his early-morning media session Friday, from the back of the room came:
“Does it make it any more special that you were able to do this in such a condensed season, 66 games, regular season games in four months, back-to-back-to-backs? It must have gotten real tiring for you. Does that make it even more special that it was so frenetic?”
The subtext was clear: Would this be an asterisk season, as his smugness Phil Jackson contended of the San Antonio Spurs’ 1999 championship that followed a 50-game, lockout-reduced schedule?
LeBron wasn’t biting. Weeks earlier, teammate Shane Battier had contended this as an exclamation-point season, considering the grueling schedule.
“I mean, condensed schedule, 66 games, 82 games, shoot, we could have played one regular-season game,” James replied. A smile followed, then a laugh, and then, “Hey, man, I’m NBA champion, and it don’t matter.”
— Ira Winderman
Rappin’ at Liv
Only on Miami Beach would the host of a party for 100 Hooters pageant contestants from around the world get tapped on the shoulder and told, “Y’all have to clear out, we’re getting ready for a party with the NBA champions.”
Words to that effect were exchanged when the staff at Liv nightclub in the Fontainebleau Hotel saw the Heat’s 20-point fourth-quarter lead and knew that Thursday night (and Friday morning) would be devoted to the victorious Miami Heat.
LeBron James and Dwyane Wade led a contingent of teammates from AmericanAirlines Arena to the luxurious Miami Beach hotel a few hours after putting the Oklahoma City Thunder on ice, slipping past hundreds of fans camped out in the lobby and at Bleau Bar.