Congratulations are in order for the Heat, who beat the Thunder 121-106 in Game 5 of the NBA Finals tonight to clinch the 2011/12 NBA championship. LeBron James put up a triple-double, and was the unanimous choice for Finals MVP. Cavs owner Dan Gilbert took to Twitter and stopped short of recognizing James and the Heat, instead congratulating the Heat and Thunder for "an exciting Finals" (hat tip to Mary Schmitt Boyer and Jodie Valade of the Plain Dealer). With the season now at its end, the real fun begins, as full attention can be paid to next week's draft and the start of free agency soon thereafter. Here's some early offseason chatter:
- Andy Kamenetzky of ESPNLosAngeles.com rounded up Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak's comments today from the Mason & Ireland Show on 710 ESPN. Kupchak echoed the sentiments of Jim Buss, the team's executive vice president, who believes the team will retain its core players and still be successful.
- Eric Pincus of HoopsWorld tries to read between the lines of Buss' recent remarks, concluding that the team's most significant moves may involve the acquisition of complementary veterans like Brandon Roy and Rashard Lewis, assuming both are available.
- Luol Deng is drawing plenty of interest from around the league, tweets Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio. Earlier today we heard the Warriors could be interested in acquiring the Bulls small forward.
- The Associated Press confirms (via ESPN.com) that a toe injury will keep Bobcats center Byron Mullens from playing for Britain in the Olympics this year.