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(AP Photo) Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant, right, passes against Miami Heat shooting guard Mike Miller, left, during the first half at Game 5 of the NBA finals basketball series, Thursday in Miami.

Mitchell native earns NBA championship ring

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Mitchell native earns NBA championship ring
Mitchell South Dakota 120 South Lawler 57301

With family and friends watching the Mitchell native play for an NBA title, Mike Miller didn't disappoint.

Miller shot 7-of-8 from 3-point land and scored 23 points in 23 minutes to help the Miami Heat defeat Oklahoma City 121-106 in Game 5 to claim the NBA title with a 4-1 series win.

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Miller added five rebounds and one steal to his stat sheet.

"It was something to see to have Mike Miller score 23 points," Miller's former high school coach Gary Munsen said.

"I'm just happy for him and for Mitchell High basketball and I'm glad I had the chance to coach him."

Miller's brother Jared said the Finals have had him just as nervous as Mike.

"I couldn't be around people when the game was on," Jared Miller said. "I was probably more nervous than he was."

Munsen is one of several Mitchell residents to spend every game of the Finals watching the former Kernel compete for a championship.

Tod Sievert was one local basketball fan who said he has been watching Mike Miller closely through the finals.

"Coming from a little town like this it's great to see somebody do something big," Sievert said.

"Now hopefully the Vikings and Chad Greenway can do it," he joked.

Munsen said he wasn't surprised by Mike Miller's outburst during the game.

"He was always a clutch player," he said. "I was cheering every time he shot. It's a great night in Mitchell."

Mike Miller got his championship in what appeared to be possibly his last chance, as the former MHS star has been dealing with several injuries.

Jared Miller said his talks with his brother have told him nothing about the future.

"We leave that alone right now," Jared Miller said. "He's been focused on what's at hand."

Mike Miller said after the game that he will be seeing how his body is doing.

"I need to meet with the doctors right now," he said, "see what parts will go on and what won't."

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