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Spurs are NBA Champions Again After Sweeping Cavaliers

Spurs are NBA Champions Again After Sweeping Cavaliers

Spurs are NBA Champions Again After Sweeping Cavaliers
June 14th, 2007

Three championships in five years. Four in nine. A series sweep of a foe molded in their likeness. Yeah, the San Antonio Spurs sure are a dynasty.

Manu Ginobili scored 27 points, including clutch free throws down the stretch, and the Spurs defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers, 83-82, in Game 4 of the NBA Finals at Quicken Loans Arena on Thursday night. San Antonio gave the broom treatment to LeBron James and crew despite surrendering a eight-point lead in the fourth quarter.

Damon Jones hit a three-pointer at the buzzer that allowed the Cavaliers to beat the point spread of 3.5 points. For a few minutes it looked like the Cavs might even force a fifth game. They took the lead with 7:55 to play on a basket by James and didn’t allow San Antonio a point in the fourth quarter until 5:25 into the period.

But the resilient Spurs built the lead back up to seven as their key players hit big field goals and free throws down the stretch. One key play came with just over three minutes to go when Tim Duncan saved a ball that appeared to be out of bounds, leading to a Spurs layup. Duncan finished with 12 points and 16 rebounds.
“It never gets old. It never gets old. It’s an unbelievable feeling,” he said of his fourth championship.

This was the first San Antonio title where Duncan wasn’t named MVP. That honor went to Tony Parker, the point guard from France famous for also being engaged to actress Eva Longoria. Parker seemed to come up with a clutch shot whenever his team needed it. In Cleveland on Thursday, he scored 24 points as San Antonio clinched a victory that was significant for several of its players.

Veteran forward Michael Finley won his first title while Robert Horry took home his record seventh championship.

“You never expect anything,” Horry said. “When you have a great group of guys like this, you want to win for them.”

Duncan praised James for his levelheadedness and leadership skills.

“I love the way he handles himself. I really do,” Duncan said of the 22-year-old superstar, who led Cleveland with 24 points in Game 4. “He takes full responsibility, that’s big for a young player.”

The Cavaliers were a team built by former Spurs to play like the Spurs. Head coach Mike Brown was an assistant under Gregg Popovich until taking over in Cleveland prior to last season and GM Danny Ferry’s last team before heading to the front office was San Antonio. They might have the system down, but the Cavs lacked the talent and experience necessary to bring Cleveland its first pro sports championship of any kind since 1964.

Although Spurs backers didn’t win against the spread in Game 4, San Antonio didn’t disappoint any gambler who took them prior to the series at -500 on the moneyline.

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Re: Spurs are NBA Champions Again After Sweeping Cavaliers

Tony Parker Nabs NBA Finals MVP Award
June 14th, 2007

Tony Parker was on the trading block a couple of years ago. The San Antonio Spurs are sure happy they kept the kid from France around.

On Thursday night, Parker was named NBA Finals MVP, becoming the first European player to win the honor. Parker, who was born in Bruges, Belgium and raised near Paris, averaged 24 points against the Cleveland Cavaliers as the Spurs swept the best-of-seven series. The title was their third in five years with Parker in the lineup. They also won in 1999, two years before he was drafted.

Against Cleveland, the 25-year-old point guard took pressure off Tim Duncan, who faced tight pressure underneath. Parker scored 27 points in Game 1, 30 in Game 2 (shooting 13-for-20), 17 in Game 3 and 24 in Game 4.

“Tony has been unbelievable. He’s been great,” Duncan said after Game 3. “He’s so confident right now, he’s feeling so good about his jump shot. They’ve been allowing him to shoot the jump shot, trying to keep him out of the paint, and when you do that, you basically warm somebody up.”

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