Mark DeCotis, Athletic Communications

Office:  321-433-5700, 321-759-4540 (C)

Titans Split on Favorite to Win NBA Finals

June 5, 2013 - The stakes are high as the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs meet in the NBA Finals beginning Thursday in Miami.

Miami, appearing in The Finals for the third straight season, is seeking its second consecutive championship and its third overall dating back to 2006. The Spurs have won four championships: 1999, 2003, 2005 and 2007 and will be seeking the proverbial "one for the thumb."

So, who will be successful? Brevard Community College basketball coaches and players contributed their predictions on who will win The Finals and why:

Men's forward Julian Adams: Spurs in six games. "The Spurs have been through it all. They've been to The Finals. They're experienced. The Heat are in The Finals for the third straight year but they're still young. The Heat are still a great team but at the end of the day experience beats talent."

Women's assistant coach Olivia Atwell: Spurs in six or seven: "I believe the many years of experience the Spurs have in the Big 3 of Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker will out will and outsmart the Heat team as a whole. The series will definitely go to six or seven games with the Spurs pulling it out in a close one."

Women's forward Kirsten Colgan: Spurs in six games: "I think it's going to be a good series. The Spurs will win because I think Tim Duncan will outplay Chris Bosh and I believe Bosh and Dwyane Wade will struggle, putting too much of a burden on LeBron James."

Men's guard Nyles Evans, bound for University of Akron: Heat in six games. "I think it will go six because the Heat don't play with urgency until they feel the pressure. It could be five if they play with the urgency they did in the seventh game with the Indiana Pacers. I also think the Heat will win because I don't think the Spurs can protect the basket to the extent that Roy Hibbert and the Pacers did."

Women's head coach Jim Grimes: Heat in six. "Miami's LeBron James is the best player on the planet, and I think that he will get more help from his supporting cast. The Spurs are not as big or physical as Indiana, so I think the front court; specifically Chris Bosh will have a better series. Miami is very good defensively, and I don't think San Antonio has enough on the offensive end to win the series. The Spurs' Tony Parker will cause problems, especially since the Heat do not have a great rim protector, but with Dwyane Wade and Bosh playing better, and LeBron being LeBron, the Heat will be too much for the Spurs."

Men's guard Torrance Rowe: Spurs in six. "I believe the Spurs are the team most ready to win. They play together and have all the right pieces to win the championship. Their two star players – Tony Parker and Tim Duncan – are experienced and know what it takes to win. Manu Ginobili coming off the bench also is a big plus."

Head men's coach Jeremy Shulman: Heat in six games. "Miami will win. I have no doubt in my mind. And I think they will get it done in five or six games. I'll go six to be safe. Miami is just so talented. Miami is the best team in the NBA, with the best talent, and the best player in the world in LeBron James. That's what wins championships in the NBA. This year is reminiscent of last year's Heat run. People forget, but Miami was taken to seven games in the Eastern Conference finals a year ago by the undermanned Boston Celtics and went into the Finals with question marks. All Miami did was dominate the Oklahoma City Thunder, winning in five games. I see much of the same this year."