LeBron James said it should not be understated how much making it back to the NBA Finals means to himself and Dwyane Wade.
"Just trying to seize the moment and understand these opportunities don't present themselves every year," he said. "Me and D-Wade talk about it all the time. If you would have told us we wouldn't have an opportunity to be close to the Finals in five or six years, we would have thought you were lying to us. It's been '06 (for Wade), and '07 for myself.
"I'm just trying to seize the moment. I understand what type of team we have, understanding we have a good enough shot. We don't want to waste the opportunity."
James said his memory of his previous trip to the Finals, losing 4-0 to the Spurs in 2007, is one he would like to replace.
"I got swept. I didn't win a game. It was very bitter," he said. "Every time I got knocked out of the playoffs it was bitter. Losing the Eastern Conference finals to Orlando. Second round to Boston last year. Second round to Boston the year before in Game 7. It was all bitter times, man. I'm a competitor. I want to win."
And, yes, he has, indeed, watched replays of that series against the Spurs.
"Absolutely," he said. "I think about it all the time. I even go back and watch some of those games and see how I wasn't that good of a player, especially on both ends of the floor. You just try to use those moments.
"There's no way I should be on the floor on a team that I can't win a game in a series. You use that as motivation."
HEAT 83, BULLS 80: In a remarkable comeback from a 12-point deficit with 3:14 to play, the Heat closed out Thursday's Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals on a 18-3 run to surge into the NBA Finals against the Dallas Mavericks. LeBron James and Dwyane Wade led the rally, with James scoring 12 of his 28 points in the final period, and Wade scoring 10 of his 21 in the fourth.
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