NBA • Though most stayed, many could not get back in to see OT.
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Miami • Some people in the sold-out Miami crowd left before the finish of Game 6 of the NBA Finals, then were not allowed back into the arena for the conclusion of what became a wild comeback win for the Heat.
Chris Bosh says good riddance.
The Heat forward made no attempt Wednesday to hide his disgust with those who left early, many of whom tried unsuccessfully to get back inside once Miami completed a rally from five points down in the final 21 seconds to force overtime.
"For all those guys who left, make sure they don't come to Game 7," Bosh said. "We only want the guys who are going to stay in the building for the whole game. You never give up. People gave up on us and they can stay where they are and watch the game at home."
Miami hosts the San Antonio Spurs in Game 7 of the finals on Thursday night.
Heat fans have been maligned by many media outlets over the past three seasons, either for their penchant for showing up late, or leaving early, or sometimes both. During the Eastern Conference finals, the radio voice of the Indiana Pacers called Heat fans "losers" and said the city does not deserve an NBA team.
It bears noting that the overwhelming majority of fans stayed in the building for the full game, and that the Heat have played to sellout crowds at home for the three seasons that Bosh, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James have been teammates in Miami. Also, it seemed to be unnoticed that several Spurs fans left their arena in San Antonio long before the end of Game 4, a one-sided Miami victory.
"I just know in my household, my wife was like, 'Would you please stop doing that to me?'" James said Wednesday, describing the scene at his house after the drama of Game 6. "My mother-in-law, even my sons, they were like, 'Oh my God. You guys lost and won at the same time.' I know. We know. I apologize to our fans from last night. But that's why the game is played all the way to zeroes."