For the first time ever, the Denver Nuggets are NBA champions.
The Nuggets knocked off the Miami Heat in Game Five by a score of 94-89.
Nikola Jokic led the Nuggets with 28 points and 16 rebounds. The 6’11” center also took home the Bill Russell NBA Finals Most Valuable Player Award. Jokic became the first Serbian player ever to win the award.
But Jokic refused to take all the honor.
“We are not in it for ourselves, we are in it for the guy next to us,” Jokic said. “And that’s why this (means) even more.”
It took until the last minute for the game to be decided. The Heat maintained the lead most of the game, but a late push from Jokic and the Nuggets ultimately put them on top.
The Nuggets never seemed to struggle in these playoffs. They beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 4-1 in the first round, then the Phoenix Suns 4-2 in the second round. Next, they swept the Los Angeles Lakers and then handled the Heat 4-1 in the Finals.
The parade will take place Thursday, June 15.
Denver is the second-closest NBA team to Rexburg. The Utah Jazz are the closest.
This is the second major professional sports championship Denver has won in the past two seasons, as the Colorado Avalanche, who share an arena with the Nuggets, claimed the Stanley Cup last year.
The Stanley Cup could be awarded Tuesday evening, as the Vegas Golden Knights host the Florida Panthers for Game Five. The Golden Knights have a 3-1 series lead. Neither team has won the Cup before.