User ID
Password
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
VegasInsider.com
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto
Soccer
Horses
More
Betting Tools

 
Spurs' Leonard wins NBA Finals MVP

New Sportsbook.ag customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Kawhi Leonard could have been devastated by losing last season's NBA Finals.

Advertisement
Instead, he vowed to get better.

Just think - the San Antonio Spurs' youngest star is only getting started. He's a champion now, with the Spurs beating the Miami Heat 104-87 on Sunday night in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, finishing off a 4-1 triumph. And after watching the Heat celebrate last season, Leonard was the pick as MVP of the series, accepting his award from 11-time champion Bill Russell.

''Everybody is just living in the moment right now,'' Leonard said. ''Really don't know what's going on.''

He'll figure it out quick. After all, the Spurs know titles - this one being their fifth since 1999.

When Commissioner Adam Silver announced Leonard as the MVP, he was mobbed by his teammates and Spurs coach Gregg Popovich roared with laughter, knowing Leonard would have to do what he hates most - talk about himself.

''Right now, it's just surreal to me,'' Leonard said. ''I have a great group of guys behind me.''

Leonard had 22 points and 10 rebounds, his third straight big game in the series. He fouled out in the fourth quarter, which was barely noticed after the job he did helping keep LeBron James in some sort of check over the final three quarters.

When it was over - actually, a few seconds before it was over - James led a group of Heat players down to the Spurs' bench for the first round of congratulatory hugs.

The first one he gave, and rightly so, was to Leonard. It was James taking the trophy from Russell in each of the last two seasons, after Miami's titles.

This time, the night belonged to Leonard, a 22-year-old who the Spurs have long thought was the heir apparent to the Big 3 of Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker.

''The first two games, he didn't play so well,'' James said about Leonard. ''I thought he attacked more in the last three games, shot the ball extremely well.''

Added Heat guard Dwyane Wade: ''It's like he just played free. ... He's the future of this team.''

The Big 3 in San Antonio is still championship-good.

But their key guy now might be Leonard, who just took over this series.

''He's a great learner and he's super competitive, has a drive to be the best that's really uncommon in our league,'' Popovich said. ''He walks the walk. I mean, he's there early, he's there late. He wants more. He wants me and the coaches to push him. So I just talked to him about not being in that defer sort of stage. The hell with Tony, the hell with Timmy, the hell with Manu, you play the game. You are the man.''

In this series, he absolutely was. Leonard averaged 17.8 points on 61 percent shooting. And he became the youngest Finals MVP since Duncan won it for the Spurs in 1999.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2015
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

  
HEADLINES
Grizzlies drop Magic, 'under' comes in
Pelicans blast 76ers, 'under' connects
Prince helps Celtics edge Jazz, 99-90
Hornets' Walker set for knee surgery
Sixers' travel affected by winter weather
Snow postpones Knicks, Nets games
LeBron, Cavs back in title conversation
Lakers' Kobe officially out for season
Thunder F Durant out vs Timberwolves
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NBA Pro Basketball Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NBA Hot Streaks
11-4 Streak, +1,960 This Year
20-3 Last 23 Win Streak
25-7 L32 Picks, 23-10 G-Plays TY
16-5 L21 G-Plays, 36-15 NBA Run
6-3 L9 G-Plays, +1,699 TY
11-5 L16 Guaranteed Plays
6-3 L9, 12-5 L17 Picks
7-2 L9 Guarantees, +1,492 TY
5-1 Last 6 Over/Unders
6-2 Last 8 NBA Selections
3-1 L4 Totals, 8-3 L11 Guarantees
NBA Pro Basketball Expert Sports Picks
2014 NBA SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mark Franco + 2060
Brian Edwards + 1773
Bill Marzano + 1714
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mark Franco + 478
Dave Cokin + 200
Tony Stoffo + 165
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Dave Cokin 78 %
Brian Edwards 66 %
Mark Franco 61 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mark Franco + 1946
Bill Marzano + 1715
Dave Cokin + 1475
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Jimmy Boyd + 515
Kyle Hunter + 499
Don Anthony + 477
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bruce Marshall + 1198
Bill Marzano + 811
The Gold Sheet + 710
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Daily Fantasy Sager Bomb