NBA Miami Heat

5 Biggest Threats to Overthrow Miami Heat Dynasty

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5 Biggest Threats To The Miami Heat Dynasty

Miami Heat
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Fans of the NBA have been scrambling to find more title contenders ever since the Eastern Conference began to fall with the early struggles of the Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks and the poorly timed demise of the house that Derrick Rose occupied.

We’re only 17 games into the season — for some teams — but the standings already seem like they’re getting turned upside down for teams that are lottery bound — even for squads who don’t hold first round picks.

"I don't think anybody really saw it coming," Chris Bosh said of the weak conference. "A lot of teams have struggled early. It's down a little bit but it's a long season, I'm sure a lot of teams will turn their fate around and start playing better basketball." (Toronto Sports Network)

Until then it’s a two-team race that has everyone’s pre-tip picks looking like they had no real thought behind them. Especially since the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers are the only teams on their side above .500.

All the talk out east is becoming about things that are, technically on the court, but could thrive with the drama of a Page Six.

It’s not so much about the Heat versus the Pacers as it is about Mike Woodson’s job, teams tanking and Jason Kidd being fined $50,000 for spilling soda on the court during Wednesday night's “Cupgate.”

But for the purpose of this article we’re going to focus the next five slides on the biggest threats — both east and west — to a three-peat on South Beach.

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Richard Nurse is a columnist for Follow him on Twitter @blackirishpr or add him to your network on Google.

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5. Los Angeles Clippers

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Doc Rivers coached Los Angeles Clippers started off up and down, but the combination of good coaching, Chris Paul and a bevy of shooters should be enough to have the team competing for a championship.

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4. San Antonio Spurs

San Antonio Spurs
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

It’s no secret that the San Antonio Spurs will always be considered too old to compete -- regardless of how good their record is (second best in the NBA). However, you can count on them looking to give the Heat headaches after coming within seconds of last year's championship.

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3. Oklahoma City Thunder

Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

With the return of Russell Westbrook, the greatness of Kevin Durant and the emergence of young studs Reggie Jackson (10.8 points per game) and Jeremy Lamb (9.3 points per game), the Oklahoma City Thunder have enough firepower to out gun the Heat when they slack on defense.

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2. Indiana Pacers

Indiana Pacers
Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Sitting at 15-1, the Indiana Pacers are what people describe as the Heat’s biggest threat. They have the height, talent and defense to take out Miami. Now they’re gunning for the home-court advantage.

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1. Miami Heat

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The entire landscape of the conference has changed, so it’s up to the Miami Heat to keep themselves focused and not let boredom and injuries be the reason that they don’t achieve history.