After suffering a heart-breaking defeat to the Miami Heat in game 6 of the 2013 NBA Finals, the San Antonio Spurs went on to lose game 7, giving the Heat their second consecutive NBA Championship.
The Spurs vowed to be better in the 2013-2014 season and were on a mission to secure their fifth NBA Title under head coach Gregg Popovich with power forward Tim Duncan leading the way. The Spurs were the best team during the regular season, finishing with the NBA’s best record of 62-20, giving them home court advantage throughout the playoffs. The Spurs faced a big challenge in the first round when they took down the Dallas Mavericks in seven games. They then cruised past the Portland Trail Blazers in fives games before taking down the Oklahoma City Thunder in six games in the Western Conference Finals.
The Heat rolled through the Eastern Conference, setting up a rematch. After splitting the first two games, the Spurs rolled to three straight blowout wins, culminating in a 104-87 victory on Sunday night that clinched the NBA Title for the Spurs.
One of the biggest reasons for the Spurs’ improvement this season was the emergence of swingman Kawhi Leonard. Leonard had a couple of forgettable games, at least offensive to start the series, scoring just nine points in each of the first two games. Leonard then scored 29 points in game 3, 20 in game 4 and 22 in game 5.
Leonard was rewarded for his effort when he was named MVP of the finals after the game.
Leonard averaged 17.8 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.2 blocks per game in the finals.