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Palm Beach Post (Florida)

It's easy to spend big money at a sports event, and that certainly includes the NBA Finals.

If you have champagne tastes (and a champagne budget) you could have purchased a flute of Moët & Chandon bubbly for $25 on Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. A goblet went for $40.

A double Bacardi rum or Grey Goose vodka cocktail, $17. Beers, $9 and $13.50.

The most expensive item in the concourse shops was a white "King James" Heat jersey with an NBA Finals patch, selling for $110. T-shirts, nearly all varieties white, were $22 to $35.

Parking at the Bayside public garage next to the arena could have been outrageous for the Finals but thus far there has been no inflation. The rate for Game 3 was $30, just as it was for the earlier playoff rounds.

In previous years the same garage has gone for $40. A few private lots near the arena were charging that Tuesday, with $25 the best price in a three-block radius.

Media crush reaches into locker room

Heat owner Micky Arison walked past the locker room door about an hour before tipoff but didn't go in. He wasn't missing much.

Approximately 100 media members were crowded inside the room at that moment, with almost all of them shoving for position around LeBron James' locker.

Asked if he still enjoys the NBA Finals atmosphere as much as he did in earlier years, LeBron said, "It's fun once I get on the court."

Plenty of former Heat players were in the arena working as members of the media, including Steve Smith (NBA TV), Shaquille O'Neal (TNT), Bruce Bowen (ESPN), Gary Payton (Fox) and Jimmy Jackson (Fox).

The group will expand by at least one next season when Shane Battier starts his post-playing career as a college basketball analyst for ESPN.

Staying hydrated, World Cup-style

We don't know precisely what James is drinking to stay hydrated and avoid a recurrence of cramping, but he's a big soccer fan, so he might be following the protocol of the U.S. national team.

When a match is approaching, the squad's nutritionist recommends one-half to 1 ounce of liquid a day per pound, according to Sports Illustrated. For James, listed at 250 pounds, that would be 125 to 250 ounces per day, or roughly 2 to 4 gallons of fluids in 24 hours.

On Twitter: Get Heat updates @PBPJasonLieser.

June 11, 2014

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