Easily the most dramatic contest of the series so far, the Heat defeated the Spurs 103-100 in overtime. LeBron James summed up Game 6 best during the post-game press conference held Tuesday night.
"This is by far the best game I've ever been a part of," James told reporters after the game.
After three quarters of textbook basketball, the San Antonio Spurs held a 75-65 advantage over the Miami Heat heading into the final twelve minutes of regulation. Tim Duncan had broken out of his shooting slump and was finally in the middle of a podium game, Boris Diaw had visibly taken James out of rhythm and Kawhi Leonard was providing an excellent push off the bench for San Antonio.
Predictably, though, Miami wasn't going down without a fight. After remaining eerily quiet for most of the game, James finally erupted in the fourth quarter and was a key part of the late game rally to tie the game up and send it into overtime where they outscored the Spurs 8-to-5. San Antonio suffered a very uncharacteristic breakdown through the last 17 minutes of play before the Heat handed them a stunning 103-100 loss inside the American Airlines center on the road to tie the series 3-3.
Though his shooting struggles continued throughout this match, James turned in a very productive performance with 32 points, 10 rebounds, 11 assists, one block and three steals. His main source of help came from Mario Chalmers who scored 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting with four rebounds and two assists. Dwyane Wade went for 14 points, four rebounds, four assists and two blocks and Chris Bosh finished with 10 points, 11 rebounds, two assists, two blocks and three steals. Ray Allen and Shane Battier combined for 18 points of 6-of-12 shooting, including a clutch three-pointer by Allen to tie the game and send it into overtime.
Duncan turned back the clock tonight with 30 points on 13-of-21 shooting to go with 17 rebounds. It was, statistically, his most productive performance in a decade. Shockingly, though, he went scoreless for the last 20 minutes of the game.
Tony Parker fought his way to 19 points on 6-of-23 shooting with three rebounds and eight assists. Leonard finished with 22 points on 9-of-14 shooting and 11 rebounds, though his game will likely be overshadowed by his missed late game free throw that would have put the game one point beyond Miami's reach.
Manu Ginobili had nine points, four rebounds and three assists but ended with eight turnovers. Diaw chipped in seven points, four rebounds and two assists. Danny Green finally went cold from three, hitting just once beyond the arc, his only made field goal all game.
Though the Spurs pulled down more rebounds (45 to 42) and made more free throws (21 to 16), the Heat's defense forced 10 steals and blocked six shots to trouble the San Antonio Offense. Miami also out-assisted San Antonio dishing 23 dimes to the Spurs' 13. The Heat made exactly one more field goal and it is likely that two missed late game free-throws and two missed rebounds will haunt the Spurs until Thursday.
This was the first overtime contest of a Game 6 of the Finals since 1974 when the Bucks beat the Celtics. Game 7 is at 8 pm in Miami and will be the deciding game of the series.