(Reuters) - The Miami Heat face the San Antonio Spurs in Game Seven of the NBA Finals on Thursday, marking the 18th time the league's championship series has gone the distance.
Here are five of the most memorable Game Sevens in NBA Finals history.
1984 - Boston Celtics 111, Los Angeles Lakers 102
Boston's Larry Bird and Los Angeles' Magic Johnson added another chapter to the Celtics-Lakers rivalry in a series that is credited with lifting the NBA to new levels of popularity. This best-of-seven series concluded with the host Celtics withstanding a late Lakers rally.
The Lakers cut a 14-point deficit to three with one minute remaining when Cedric Maxwell, who had a game-high 24 points for Boston, took the ball from Magic Johnson. Dennis Johnson drained two free throws to seal the win. Bird was named the series MVP.
1957 - Boston Celtics 125, St. Louis Hawks 123 (2OT)
The first NBA title of the record 17 won by Boston was won at their infamously hot Boston Garden under legendary coach Red Auerbach and featuring Hall of Famer Bill Russell. With Boston leading 103-101, Bob Pettit sank two free throws in the final moments of regulation to force overtime. Boston held a 113-111 lead but Jack Coleman hit a jumper to force a second overtime before the Celtics prevailed.
1970 - New York Knicks 113, Los Angeles Lakers 99
The first of the Knicks' two NBA titles is remembered almost as much for the man who barely played than those who delivered the points. Willis Reed had picked up a leg injury and was not expected to play but he scored two early baskets to set New York on their way and ignite the crowd before stepping out of the game. Walt Frazier was the star of the night for the Knicks as he had 36 points, 19 assists and seven rebounds.
1969 - Celtics 108, Lakers 106
The Celtics won their 11th title in 13 years as Bill Russell bowed out of the game with another memorable triumph, this time against a Lakers team featuring Wilt Chamberlain and Jerry West. The game in Los Angeles is remembered for the Lakers placing celebratory balloons in the rafters in anticipation of a win that never came due to some costly late turnovers.
1962 - Celtics 110, Lakers 107 (OT)
In the last five seconds of regulation Los Angeles' Frank Selvy missed an open 12-footer from the baseline that would have clinched the title and ended the Celtics' dynasty. Instead, the game went into overtime and Boston prevailed.
It was the start of an awful run of form for the Lakers against the Celtics in the Finals - six more defeats to Boston came before they finally ended the run in 1985.
(Compiled by Simon Evans in Miami; Editing by Frank Pingue)