MANILA, Philippines — The Miami Heat won their second straight NBA title after beating the San Antonio Spurs 95-88 in game 7 of their series, but Filipinos are still divided on how to properly pronounce the former’s city name.
It wasn’t enough to divide a nation into two teams, but to split the other half is another matter.
On one hand, a group of friends watching the pivotal game over breakfast in a coffee shop this morning, chanting: “Miami! Miami (pronounced ‘My-Ya-Mee’)!”
On another table, another group who came in early to watch the game, shouting: “Miami! Miami (pronounced ‘Mee-Ya-Mee‘)!”
Sitting on the surrounding tables were Spurs fans who were composed of San Antonio fans naturally, as well as Laker , Michael Jordan, and Pacer fans, plus LeBron James haters who floods your social network’s timeline with “Le-Choke” posts prior to this game.
“Of course it’s pronounced like that,” said Hans, a Heat fan belonging to the first group.
At that moment, the second group started chanting, “Mee-ya-mee! Mee-ya-mee!“, generating looks from the Spurs table in the process.
“Paano ba ipronounce yung MIA Road? Diba Mee-ya?!” said an irate member of the second group while pointing at the abbreviated team name displayed on the TV screen.
In the end, when the buzzer has sounded and the balloons fell, both Heat groups rejoiced at the victory of their team leaving the coffee shop together in jubilation.
A few Spurs fans belonging to the third group joined the Heat fans in their celebration, knowing that even though their team lost, the thought of a Filipino-American coach leading a team to a back-to-back championship was reason enough to feel triumphant.
A select few remained, huddled together to post another status update downplaying a team’s achievement by singling out a player and comparing the amount of championship rings he have, why it has to reach a 7th game, whining about the officiating and contemplating about posting another ‘le-choke’ comment for next season.