MIAMI — Maybe it was the thought of “The Big Three” forming in South Beach or maybe it was the fact that LeBron James left his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers for the Miami Heat but either way it goes the Heat’s legacy will forever be tied to famous by James and the Heat.
After forming to become “The Big Three” in Miami two seasons ago it was James who made the famous “not one, not two….” speech that even after winning their first title leaves the question: just how many titles can the Miami Heat win?
After forming in South Beach two seasons ago ,the Heat and James became the victims of the NBA ,where the media and the pressure to win mounted.
It seemed like no matter what Miami did, they were still publicly criticized win or loss. Either way it goes the media and fans when talking about the Heat seem to always refer back to James championship speech and hold them to it even to this day after winning their first elusive title.
After winning that first title in Miami,the question now is after one championship how many more can the Heat win? If there was pressure for Miami before the stove just got a lot hotter starting this season.
Now that Miami has won that first title they will have the target on their back with everybody gunning for them and every team on notice that Miami is the champion and everybody will be looking to knock them out.
After coming back from behind in three consecutive playoff series last season it seemed like Miami were going to fall short of the title, but with an historic playoff run from James the Heat fought back to win it all.
That effort and resiliency that the Heat showed last season is the same effort the Heat should expect this upcoming season from opponents.
The Heat made improvements this summer bringing in Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis to bolster their bench but just like them other teams made improvements themselves.
In the Eastern Conference the Chicago Bulls, seen as the biggest threat to the Heat will be without Derrick Rose for most of the season but still remain a playoff contender without him. The New York Knicks bolstered their bench as well bringing in Jason Kidd and Marcus Camby, the Indiana Pacers stayed pat while adding DJ Augustin and big man Ian Mahinmi.
The Brooklyn Nets bolstered what could be the best back court in the NBA with Joe Johnson and Deron Williams while teams like the Atlanta Hawks and Andrew Bynum and the Philadelphia 76ers in the hunt.
Then in the Western Conference you have the reigning champion Oklahoma City Thunder, and the new look Los Angeles Lakers who seem to be the popular team to knock off the Heat if they made it to the NBA Finals.
Despite the Heat’s title they showed signs of weaknesses during their playoff run as a small team that shied away from physical play during stretches vs the Pacers and the Celtics. With that in mind teams have looked to get bigger but quicker at the same time to counter the Heat and what they like to do.
While the “The Big Three” and Miami got the last laugh this past season winning the title, James and the Heat should recognize that one championship is not enough for this team and the media will once again be on the Miami Heat come October with one question: “can the Heat repeat and just how many championships can they win”?