Obama welcomes NBA champ Dallas Mavericks

Washington: President Barack Obama is hailing the Dallas Mavericks at the White House seven months after they beat the Miami Heat in the NBA finals.

The first basketball fan usually roots for his hometown Chicago Bulls. But in an East Room ceremony Monday, he praised Coach Rick Carlisle and Mavericks stars, including German-born forward Dirk Nowitzki, for defeating the Heat in six games last June.

The victory was sweet revenge for Dallas after it blew an NBA finals lead to the Heat five years earlier. The victory also upended the hope of Heat superstars LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh for a championship in their first year playing together.

Bureau Report