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NBA Finals: LeBron James, Miami Heat on brink of title
NBA » In third trip to Finals, James is 1 win away from 1st title.


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I feel a lot better than I did last night. That’s clear," James said. "I’m still a little [sore] because of the muscles just kind of being at an intense level, very tight. I’m still sore. I was able to get some treatment last night. I was able to get some treatment this morning. ... And also with the game being basically at midnight tomorrow night, I have all day tomorrow, too, to prepare. I should be fine by tomorrow night."

It’s a 9 p.m. tipoff, actually, but the point is made.

At a glance

Finals schedule

All games broadcast on Ch. 4

Game 1 » Oklahoma City 105, Miami 94

Game 2 » Miami 100, Oklahoma City 96

Game 3 » Miami 91, Oklahoma City 85

Game 4 » Miami 104, Oklahoma City 98

Miami leads series 3-1

Thursday » Oklahoma City at Miami, 7 p.m.

x-June 24 » Miami at Oklahoma City, 6 p.m.

x-June 26 » Miami at Oklahoma City, 7 p.m.

x-if necessary

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By Thursday night, James will be ready for the championship stage. And so will his team. What started on Christmas Day in Dallas, watching the Mavericks hoist the banner that will forever commemorate their championship celebration on Miami’s home floor last year, could end as the perfect turnaround story for the Heat.

"You’ve got to absolutely immerse yourself into the process and the focus," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "It’s Game 5. We want to treat it as a Game 7. But we are preparing for Game 5 to protect our home court and to take care of that business. It’s been well documented the experience we went through last year and the pain and all that. It doesn’t guarantee anything. Experience is a great teacher. You know, hopefully all those experiences will help us."

James says they’ve already helped him.

He could not have seemed more relaxed on Wednesday. The chance he’s waited nine years for comes on Thursday night, and James appeared totally comfortable in anticipation of that moment.

I’ve experienced some things in my long but short career, and I’m able to make it better of myself throughout these playoffs and throughout this whole year, and that’s on and off the court," James said. "I’m just happy that I’m able to be in this position today and be back in this stage where I can do the things that I can do to make this team proud, make this organization proud, and we’ll see what happens."




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