Miami Heat Nation: We are the Champions

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On June - 28 - 2012

Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, LeBron James photo courtesy Manny Hernandez

By:  Mary Jo Almeida-Shore 

When our beloved Miami Heat finally won the NBA Championship, a victory more than two years in the making, Miami as a whole experienced the cathartic joy- as we are now all, on some level, champions. Nowhere was this more evident than at LIV at the Fontainebleau, just a few hours before dawn, on Friday morning, and on the streets during the championship parade and at the American Airlines Arena (AAA) for the championship celebration on Monday.

“We are the Champions” blared through the speakers at LIV nightclub at just before 3 a.m. on Friday morning, as the newly crowned, World Champions, Miami HEAT, fresh from winning the NBA championship entered the massive nightclub for their official victory party, to the ecstatic chants of thrilled fans, who shouted, “Let’s go Heat!”  The chanting changed to “MVP” shortly thereafter, as LeBron James made his way to the stage at the back of the club, wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with the “vampire image” of his face.   The music stopped for a bit as Heat owner Micky Arison and coach Eric Spoelstra were cheered on as they took to the stage to address the fans and thank them for their support.

Miami Heat DJ, DJ Irie, (a.k.a. DJ Two Rings) who was also celebrating his birthday, kept the crowd going all night, encouraging us to “Make some Nooooiiiiiiisssssseeeee!” and playing the players’ favorite songs.  James and Wade (who wore a shirt that said “Team No Sleep”) danced on-stage and sang/rapped just about every song. At one point, James rapped along with LMFAO who performed on top of the DJ booth on the other side of the club. In between the singing and dancing, the team managed to ring up a $200,000 tab, with $75, 000 being spent on the Ace of Spades champagne.  Fire dancers, confetti blasts and carbon dioxide spray guns added to the intoxicating energy in the club.

Most of the players and their ladies were on-hand for the celebration.  We mingled with James, Wade, Udonis Haslem, Joel Anthony, Shane Battier, (who was the friendliest) Norris Cole, Juwan Howard and others, filling the back VIP area to capacity. Bosh arrived at around 4:30 a.m. and promptly joined James and Bosh center-stage.  The party showed no signs of stopping until around 6 a.m. An encore celebration took place on Friday night at LIV, when LMFAO gave a surprise performance after their concert.  Bamboo nightclub was HEAT central on Saturday and Sunday nights.  Team members were also spotted at Club Play on Sunday.

Hundreds of thousands jubilantly (and PEACEFULLY) gathered in the streets on Monday for the Parade of Champions, comprised of 38 vehicles, including several double-decker buses carrying all of the players, Coach Spoelstra, Micky Arison and Pat Riley and their wives, who waved and cheered along with fans.  After the main parade the arena celebration open only to season-ticket holders, took place inside the AAA where DJ Irie reenacted the energy and excitement of LIV for fans of all ages.  During the ceremony, it was plainly evident that the players consider themselves family members, especially in the playful way they interact, tease and poke fun at one another.  The word family came up time and time again, as each player was interviewed. And for this brief and magnificent moment in time- it is a family we can all feel proud to be a part of.


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