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SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) - Thousands poured into the streets of San Antonio in boisterous and mostly crime-free celebrations on Sunday night after the Spurs won their fifth National Basketball Association championship in 15 years.
There were no reports of any major injuries or violence from a crowd waving Spurs flags that filled the Texas city's streets and broke into team cheers in celebrations one city official described as "exuberant but respectful."
"I feel great," Spurs fan Justin Whitley said. "People stepped on my brand new shoes and I don't care. I love them and I hugged them."
The Spurs delivered a decisive end to LeBron James' two-year reign atop the basketball world by routing his Miami Heat 104-87 on Sunday in San Antonio to win the NBA Finals four games to one.
Before heading downtown for the celebration, hundreds of fans lined up at local sporting goods stores to buy NBA championship merchandise, which had been placed on store shelves earlier Sunday in expectation of a Spurs victory.
Even people staying in downtown hotels, like Jesse Garza, joined in the festivities.
"We'd rather be here celebrating with everybody than asleep in our hotel room," he said about 1 a.m. on Monday.
Reporting by Jim Forsyth; Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Eric Beech