One of the most hyped NBA Finals in years is going to live up to the hype, according to our NBA 2K12 simulation.
We once again teamed up with 2K Sports to simulate all seven games -- yes, seven games -- of the series between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Miami Heat. It's a back-and-forth series that comes down to a deciding game, with LeBron James and Kevin Durant exchanging blows all along the way.
Let's all hope for the same in real life. The simulation is below, courtesy of 2K sports.
Heat 101, Thunder 80
Miami came out on fire, with the Big Three establishing themselves early. LeBron James (43 points, 4 assists, 9 rebounds) dominated, and he got help from Dwayne Wade (27 points) and Chris Bosh (18 points). The Thunder saw Kevin Durant (26 points, 10 rebounds) and Russell Westbrook (14 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists) struggle throughout most of the night. The 31-point, fourth-quarter explosion by Miami sent a big message to Oklahoma City, turning the tables on its home-court advantage.
Thunder 108, Heat 97
Durant and Westbrook took the Game 1 loss to heart and came out with a message of their own in Game 2, as they each scored 37 points in the OKC victory. Miami’s play was the complete opposite of their Game 1 brilliance. James struggled from the field, shooting only 7-of-22 (19 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists), and Wade’s scoring was one-sided, with 18 of his 20 points coming in the first half. Bosh (27 points, 8 rebounds) had a solid output, but the lack of bench production and depth contributed to the Heat loss.
Thunder 112, Heat 94
Game 3 was met with much anticipation as the series shifted to South Beach. Heat fans were ready to get a 2-1 jump on the Thunder, but Durant had different plans in mind. Durant scored 43 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, knocking down shot after shot. Westbrook added 29 points and James Harden contributed 15 more as the Thunder won 112-94. James (35 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists), Wade (31 points, 6 assists) and Bosh (18 points, 7 rebounds) came to play, but Miami’s bench continued to struggle in Game 3. OKC’s big win gave the Thunder a 2-1 lead and the type of confidence a team can only get from winning on the road in the NBA Finals.
Heat 99, Thunder 94
Hearts were surely racing in the tense last moments of Game 4. James (36 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists) and D-Wade (33 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists) led the Heat to the victory, tying the series at 2-2. Bosh (10 points, 13 rebounds) was solid as he led a herculean defensive effort by Miami. Westbrook (30 points, 7 assists, 4 steals) led OKC in scoring and Durant had a bit of an off night, shooting 11-of-29 from the field for 27 points. Shane Battier’s stellar defense on Harden proved to be extremely effective, while the Thunder’s bench production wasn’t effective. Miami’s bench came through in big ways to tie this series; the stars might have dominated the first three games, but Game 4 was won by the Miami bench.
Thunder 108, Heat 105
Over the span of this series, we’ve seen many of these tightly contested playoff games come down to who hits the big shots. Perhaps no shot was bigger than Derek Fisher’s go ahead 3-pointer at the buzzer to clinch a Game 5 victory for the Thunder. Calm, collected and cold-blooded, Fisher added to his long list of clutch shots in the postseason. Coming off a Durant screen from an inbounds pass with just 2.1 seconds left, Fisher curled around the screen, caught the wide-open inbounds pass, and let the 3-pointer fly as the time expired. He may be 37, but the ice water running through his veins is as cool as ever. The buzzer-beater gave OKC the 3-2 series lead despite the efforts of James (36 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists) and Wade (27 points, 7 rebounds). Durant (35 points, 12 rebounds) and Harden (27 points) led the way for OKC before the heroic shot by Fisher (7 points) sealed the game for Oklahoma City.
Heat 113, Thunder 103
With the NBA title at stake, the best players in the world took over. In an unreal shootout, Miami’s late run led by LeBron James (40 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists) and Dwayne Wade (30 points, 5 assists) frustrated the Thunder. LeBron -- who went to the free throw line 10 times in the fourth, compared to twice in the first three quarters -- was determined to force a Game 7. He leaned his head down and drove hard to the bucket play after play late in the fourth. Durant (44 points, 8 rebounds) and Westbrook (30 points, 5 assists) dominated offensively, but Harden had his lowest scoring output of the series (six points). The Heat and Thunder were tied with three minutes to go, but LeBron’s will to get to the rim edged Miami over OKC and forced Game 7.
Thunder 107, Heat 101
In one of the greatest NBA Finals in history, it was only fitting these two teams would cap off their amazing play in an epic Game 7. Despite 85 combined points from Miami’s big three, the Thunder’s stars led their team to the NBA championship. Westbrook scored a game-high 32 points, and Durant (28 points, 7 rebounds) was huge with 20 second-half points. Harden (28 points, 7 rebounds) kept the pressure on as well. Bosh led the way for Miami, with 31 points and 8 rebounds, and went out strong with his highest scoring output of the series. Wade also contributed with 31 points, but LeBron James took only 12 shots in the entire game, adding 23 points and 11 assists. Tied after three quarters, the Thunder put on the defensive clamps and slowed Miami down. Kevin Durant was named NBA Finals MVP, and Derek Fisher earned his sixth NBA championship ring. This series was one for the ages.