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Pat Riley says he cherishes 2006 Miami championship most of all

June 20, 2012|By Chuck Schilken
  • Pat Riley singled out the championship he won as coach of the Miami Heat in 2006 as the one he cherishes the most out of his seven NBA titles.
Pat Riley singled out the championship he won as coach of the Miami Heat in… (Allen Eyestone / Palm Beach…)

This post has been corrected. See the note at the bottom for details.

Miami Heat President Pat Riley could be days away from receiving his eighth NBA championship ring.

Of the seven he already possesses, six of those were won with the Lakers -- one as a player, one as an assistant coach and four as the head coach during the Showtime era.

Perhaps Riley could use a little reminder of just how great that time and those teams were. When accepting the NBA's Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award on Tuesday night in Miami, Riley reflected back on his career and said one championship stood out above all the rest.

The one he won as coach of the Miami Heat in 2006.

While acknowledging that "the Laker years made me," Riley confessed that his "favorite team was the one in 2006 here. Bringing Shaq into it and winning the championship for this city and for Miami, for [Heat owner Micky Arison], that to me will always probably be the one that I cherish the most."

What? No love for L.A.? What about finally beating the Celtics in 1985? Or beating the Pistons in seven games to make good on his guarantee of a repeat championship in 1988?


Well, if that's how he feels, then so be it. If he wants to pick the one championship he's won in the two decades since he's been with the team, fine with us, right, Lakers fans? After all, our guys have won five titles during that same period -- maybe we like those better than the Showtime ones too.

Take that, Pat!

NOTE: An earlier version of this post said Riley coached the Heat to a championship in 1996. He coached Miami's 2006 championship team.


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