Miami Heat president Pat Riley has now been a part of 25% of NBA Finals in league history, following Monday night’s 103-84 series-clinching win over the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals. Riley, 78, is making his 19th NBA Finals appearance.
The nine-time NBA champ (1972, 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988, 2006, 2012, and 2013) made three appearances as a player, 10 as a coach, and six as an executive. His first ring was won as a player with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1972. The 2023 NBA Finals is the 76th championship series in league history.
Referring to a couple of NBA betting sites, the Heat are 9-point underdogs away in Game 1 of the 2023 NBA Finals against the Denver Nuggets. Sportsbooks are giving Jimmy Butler second-shortest odds to win Finals MVP.
With the Heat advancing, Pat Riley has now been part of 25% of the NBA Finals in league history.
The Godfather 👏 pic.twitter.com/c7oCrBd1sp
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 30, 2023
As the Miami Heat’s president, Pat Riley won NBA Executive of the Year in 2011 after the Big Three — LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh — finished 58-24 and second in the Eastern Conference.
Although the Heat lost in six games against the Dallas Mavericks in the 2011 NBA Finals, the New York native went on to win back-to-back titles with his Big Three in 2012 and 2013.
Miami Heat president Pat Riley has been a part of 25% of NBA Finals in league history, hopes to win 10th championship
“To me, at all costs means you will do anything within the rules to get the win,” Riley told ESPN after Miami’s Game 7 win over the Celtics. “You have to convince your players that this is what it takes, and this is the cost.
“The cost is you better get your ass in the best shape that you’ve ever been in your life. The only way you can do that is you’ve got to work.”
Pat Riley also served as head coach of the Lakers from 1981 to 1990. He then coached for the New York Knicks (1991-95) and Heat (1995-2003, 2005-08).
Pat Riley knows what it takes to WIN!
As a player, coach and general manager he has been to 19 NBA Finals. That’s 25%!!!
“The cost is you better get your ass in the best shape that you’ve ever been in your life. The only way you can do that is you’ve got to work,” Pat Riley… pic.twitter.com/YSM4jCoxiW
— The Winning Difference (@thewinningdiff1) May 30, 2023
On his first day (May 31) as the Knicks head coach in 1991, Riley said, “I’m not concerned about the pressure. That’s part of the job. I don’t want it to be easy. It won’t be easy. But I don’t like losing. I don’t accept losing. And I don’t want to be a part of losing.”
Whether as a player, coach, or team president, Pat Riley has always had high standards and the will to win. If the Heat manage to upset the Nuggets in the 2023 NBA Finals, Riley will win his 10th NBA championship.