Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Now that the Miami Heat have taken a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals, some are saying the series is already over and Thursday’s game will just be a coronation game. NBA history may give that argument some leverage.
Thirty times in NBA Finals history a team has gone up 3-1. Out of those 30 times, no team has ever come back from the 3-1 deficit to win the NBA championship.
In Game 4, Oklahoma City came out firing on all cylinders and almost knocked the Heat out for good. The Thunder took a 33-19 into the second quarter before everything started going downhill in a hurry for Oklahoma City.
But before Heat fans can start planning where they will be for the Heat’s championship parade down Biscayne Boulevard; Oklahoma City has had its proverbial back against the wall before in the 2012 NBA Playoffs.
In the Western Conference finals, Oklahoma City lost the first two games of the series to San Antonio before storming back to win four straight and advance to the NBA Finals. Still, Oklahoma City lost only three games heading into the Finals and has now lost three straight.
Miami wants to close the series out Thursday night in front of the home crowd at the AmericanAirlines Arena. Primarily because if the series heads back to Oklahoma City with the Heat leading 3-2, all bets are off as to whether Miami can close out the Thunder.
Last year, Miami fans had to watch the Dallas Mavericks hoist the Larry O’Brien trophy as NBA champions. All that stands between Miami doing that at home this season is one more victory over a great Oklahoma City Thunder team Thursday.