Hundreds of overly jubilant basketball fans set fire to a police car and threw rocks at police as celebrations for the Los Angeles Lakers' first NBA title in
12 years got out of hand late Monday.
One hour after the Lakers put away the Indiana Pacers by 116-111 in the sixth game of the National Basketball Association Finals, cheering Lakers fans outside the stadium set fire to a patrol car and a television van.
Police had no difficulty in dispersing the rowdy bunch and another group of revelers who hurled rocks at police.
The police made no arrests, and there were no injuries to report said spokesman Brian Putnam.
Several hundred fans gathered outside the stadium from the start of the game and danced around two huge bonfires set alight after the Lakers clinched their seventh NBA title.
LAKERS WIN NBA TITLE
Shaquille O'Neal scored 41 points to help the Los Angeles Lakers win the NBA
Finals in Los Angeles, Monday, defeating Indiana 116-111 to capture the best-of-seven series in six games.
The Lakers won their first title since 1988, making it their 12th title overall.
O'Neal wept in the post-game celebration of his first career title after eight
O'Neal, Kobe Bryant and Robert Horry scored on consecutive possessions to give the Lakers a 109-103 lead with 3:28 remaining.
Indiana then began using a "Hack-A-Shaq" strategy and O'Neal made only 1-of-4 free throws, leaving him only 3-of-12 for the game. The Pacers rallied within
110-109 on two Austin Croshere free throws with 92 seconds to play.
Mark Jackson swished through a stunning 40-foot turnaround jump shot as the first quarter expired to give Indiana a 26-24 lead. Jackson's amazing effort touched off a 24-11 run that gave the Pacers a 47-35 lead with 6:43 to go in the half.
The Lakers trimmed Indiana's edge to a single point three times in the third quarter, but they never drew even and the Pacers boosted the edge to 84-79 on Rose's turn-around jumper with 4/10s of a second to play in the third quarter.
Laker coach Phil Jackson, who guided Chicago to six titles in eight years, became only the second man to coach two different clubs to NBA titles, matching the feat of Alex Hannum with St. Louis in 1958, and Philadelphia in 1967. His seven career crowns are two shy of Red Auerbach's all-time NBA record - (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)