Champion Mavs return to Dallas
DALLAS -- The NBA champion Dallas Mavericks are back in Texas.
Hundreds of jubilant fans gathered at Love Field as the jet carrying the team landed in Dallas at about noon Monday, one day after the Mavericks wrapped up the NBA title with a Game 6 win against the Miami Heat. The plane passed under a water cannon welcome at the airport.
Owner Mark Cuban walked off the plane carrying the championship trophy. Dirk Nowitzki followed him carrying his MVP trophy. Both carried the hardware to a high fence surrounding the runway, allowing fans to get a close look.
2011 NBA Finals: Champion Mavericks
Game 1: Heat 92, Mavericks 84
Game 2: Mavericks 95, Heat 93
Game 3: Heat 88, Mavericks 86
Game 4: Mavericks 86, Heat 83
Game 5: Mavericks 112, Heat 103
Game 6: Mavericks 105, Heat 95
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It is the first NBA championship title for Dallas. The Mavs confirmed that a victory parade will be Thursday morning, but the precise route and other details won't be announced until Tuesday morning.
Mayor Dwaine Caraway said the city is in a budget crunch but still plans a parade, though Cuban repeated Monday that he will personally pay for the celebration.
"We'll do it," Cuban said early Monday morning. "All I told them was -- Terdema Ussery, our president -- you plan the parade. I'll pay for it because I don't think it's right for the city to have to pay for it. And let's just have some fun."
Five years ago, after Dallas took a 2-0 lead in the Finals over the Heat and were bound for South Beach, parade plans were revealed and it became the first embarrassing mishap in an epic meltdown that has finally come to an end.
One area where Cuban hinted he might break with tradition is presenting championship rings to his players.
"I might not get rings," the Mavs' billionaire owner told NBATV. "Rings are old school. You've seen it before: There's guys who pick up the sweats and towels and they have these big, blingy rings. I'm like, 'Rings are done. It's time to take it to the next level.'"
Police say no property damage or injuries were reported after fans crowded into downtown Dallas on Sunday night. Dallas police reported 14 arrests, including six for public intoxication, four for disorderly conduct and four people taken into custody on outstanding warrants.
Over the past year, the Dallas area has hosted the World Series and the Super Bowl but the Mavericks are the most recent pro championship since the Dallas Stars won the Stanley Cup in 1999.
ESPNDallas.com Mavericks reporter Jeff Caplan and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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