The 2011 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2010–11 period of the National Basketball Association (NBA) in which the Western Conference champion Dallas Mavericks defeated the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat four games to 2 to win their first NBA championship. The show was held from May 31 to June 12, 2011. German participant Dirk Nowitzki was named the Finals MVP, becoming the second European to win the award after Tony Parker (2007) and the first German participant to do so. The series was a rematch of the 2006 NBA Finals, which the Heat had won in six matches.
Going into the series, the Heat were heavy favorites with their newly acquired superstars LeBron James and Chris Bosh along with returning superstar Dwyane Wade.
The Dallas Mavericks became the first team in NBA history as the establishment of the 2–3–2 format to input Game 3 tied at one, eliminate Game 3 and still win the Finals. The past 11 times this happened, the Game 3 winner went on to win the series.The Mavericks also became just the 7th group, and the first since 1988, to return and win the Finals after being down at the show two or more independent times (one game to none, and later two matches to one). The previous six times this occurred, the Finals ended in seven games; Dallas became the first team in NBA history to do it in six games.
ABC averaged a 10.1 rating, 11.7 million households and nearly 17.3 million viewers with the 2011 Finals, based on Nielsen.
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