The Miami Heat signed the right three star players in the summer of 2010.
The team did struggle early on in their first year with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh together but their struggles were mostly based off of chemistry. The Heat played too unselfishly through the first couple of months of the 2010-2011 NBA season, it was debatable over whose team it was, and even questionable who was the best player. But now each member of the ‘Big 3’ is comfortable his role and his responsibilities they all complement each other in a way that other teams who have tried to duplicate the Heat’s roster strategy simply do not.
It may be early but it’s evident that the Los Angeles Lakers may not ever be able to fuse the skills and talents of Kobe Bryant with Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol, even with a healthy Steve Nash. The New York Knicks have won just one playoff game since trading for Carmelo Anthony and signing Tyson Chandler after signing Amare Stoudamire to a maximum contract in that same summer of 2010. The Knicks have improved vastly since the trade for Anthony especially on the defensive end but Stoudamire has yet to play this season. Based off the games the Knicks have played with all three players in the line-up it has been quite clear that their games do not complement each other.
Although James and Wade have improved their play in the post both of them have been able to maintain their personalities as players and in fact have made the team better because their ability to dominate in the paint allows Bosh to be a more effective shooting big man. Another difference is that all three players have and will have the ball in their hands late in games with each being capable of making a game winning shot, pass, or getting to the free throw line.
The Lakers and Knicks both primarily put the ball in the hands of Bryant and Anthony and simply rely on their clutch scoring ability to win a game. This type of offense speaks to the biggest difference with these three teams. Both James and Wade are wing players who can move without the ball in their hands and Bosh is a big man that can space the floor. Bryant and Anthony are scorers who primarily score in one-on-one situations, Howard is a big man whose scoring will come primarily from pick-and-roll along with offensive rebounds and lobs, Gasol can score in the paint but needs the more touches, Stoudamire can only be an effective scorer with more touches and with space underneath the basket, Chandler is more limited offensively than Howard, and Nash is only effective with the ball in his hands.
In other words the Heat have the best three core guys in the league because their three best players all make each other better by the versatility they bring. The Knicks may have improved and the Lakers may be loaded but the Heat are a team that has players that fit perfectly together.