Tens of thousands of fans celebrated the second straight Miami Heat championship parade outside the AmericanAirlines Arena. Inside, the team partied as well, and talked about making history.
The Afterparty, 2:30 p.m.
After a franchise-record 66 wins, a 27-game winning streak, and a second straight championship, the Miami Heat wrapped up a historic season Monday inside the American Airlines Arena.
Outside, tens of thousands of fans celebrated.
We feel like Miami parties better than any city in the world, said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra.
And inside, the team talked about family, hard work, and history.
It really is about respect, said team president Pat Riley. And this is what players, I think, ultimately play for. You dont merely want to be considered the best of the best in anything you do. You want to be considered the only ones who do what you do. You separate yourselves from the pack. And I I don't think theres any doubt theyve separated themselves from the pack this year. And their names are going to be respected and honored.
The team was indeed honored, by the Miami City Commission and the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners.
Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado had a bold prediction for the NBA champions.
Next year, he said, Repeat! Repeat!
A Snails Pace, 12:15 p.m.
The Miami Heat parade planners are letting this second straight championship marinate a little longer before heading indoors to celebrate with season ticket holders.
Last year, the players breezed past crowds tens-of-thousands strong in about a half hour. This year, after people complained, its 45 minutes and still going.
Katarina Alshaier, 16, a junior at Everglades High School in Miramar, is celebrating the Heat victory in the same parade spot as last year.
We act like the caboose of the train, said Alshaier, wearing all white Heat gear and shaking red maracas at the bend where Southeast 4th Street becomes Biscayne Boulevard.
The players pass us here were going to follow them all the way to the arena.
-BRITTNY VALDES and DAVID SMILEY
Confetti Time, Noon
The rain let up, and double-decker buses and semi-trucks rolled slowly down Eighth Street and onto Biscayne Boulevard carrying Heat players, team executives and their families.
Game 6 hero Ray Allen sprayed fans with a Super Soaker. Chris Bosh clutched the Larry OBrien trophy. LeBron James chewed a stogie.
Its the ultimate, he told Miami Heat broadcaster Eric Reid. This is why I came down here, to have a parade at the end of the year.
To catch the victory lap, Heat fans made up fake ailments - like Winstons toothache - and trekked to Biscayne Boulevard at midnight.
A crowd of fans climbed a railroad signal in front of the Freedom Tower like a scaffolding to get an overhead view. They stood atop the signal, and clung to the ladders on either side.
Miami Officer Chester joked at the climbers saying when yall come down from there, Im gonna arrest all yall. None were arrested, though
Natalie Giraldo received a trespass warning from Officer Chester.
I took so many pictures, there were so many people. It was awesome, Giraldo said.
-DAVID SMILEY AND DANIEL DUCASSI
Parade is On, 11:20 a.m.