NBA Miami Heat

5 Reasons Why Dwyane Wade is Still the Miami Heat’s 2nd-Best Player

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5 Reasons Why Dwyane Wade is Still the Miami Heat's Second-Best Player

5 Reasons Why Dwyane Wade is Still the Miami Heat's Second-Best Player
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

LeBron James, LeBron James, LeBron James. That is all everyone seems to talk about when the Miami Heat and/or NBA are the topic on conversation. There is no arguing who the best player on the Heat and in the NBA is, because hands down that is James, but you cannot overlook the importance of Dwyane Wade to this Heat team.

People may disagree with me on this, but I have said before that I think even without James that the Heat still could have won back to back championships because of how weak the Eastern Conference is and because Wade has championship experience before James was even on the team.

Whether you agree or disagree with my opinion, it does not matter because that is not what this slideshow is about. The topic for this slideshow is why Wade is still the Heat's second best player despite his age and all of his injuries this season, and in the past on top of that.

If basketball was like hockey and they had the captain's C on their jerseys, Wade would get that C. He is the captain and leader of the Heat and what gets this team going. Yes, LeBron might score the most, but who do you think passes him the ball on most occasions?

Still don't believe me Wade is the leader and still the second best player on this Heat team?

Well, then click next on the top right and see my top five reasons why Wade is still the Heat's second best player.

Steven Carollo is a sports writer for Follow him on Twitter, add him on Facebook, connect with him on LinkedIn and join his Google network.

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5. Depth At Guard

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When Wade is in the starting lineup, the Heat have great depth at guard; when he is injured ... not so much.

Both Ray Allen and Norris Cole are good compliments when Wade needs a rest, but Allen with his age and Cole with his inexperience in logging starters minutes just cannot fill Wade's shoes, thus showing off Wade's extreme importance to this Heat team.

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4. Offense

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Wade averages 18.9 points and 4.7 assists per game this season when he is in the lineup.

Take that away from any team, even the Heat, and I can assure you that struggles will follow and the Heat are no different.

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3. Defense

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The Heat are 1.6 points better defensively when Wade is in the lineup.

When you think Heat, you think of a team that scores a lot of points, but what makes the Heat so great is that they are also one of the top defensive teams in the league when the "Big 3" are all healthy and on the court. Take Wade out of the equation and they are struggling to hold teams under 100 points. Coincidence?

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2. Chemistry

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

What started out as a struggle when the "Big 3" first united, it quickly turned into a force to be reckoned with.

You can argue that there is no greater chemistry between three NBA players than of Wade, James and Chris Bosh. Teams win championships, not individual players, and with Wade out of the lineup, you can just tell that this is not the same back to back championship team.

Lack of offense, defense and depth are all a result of poor chemistry when the Heat's general, Wade, is not on the court.

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1. Record Without Wade

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The biggest reason that Wade is still the Heat's second best player can easily be seen when you look at the team's record when he is not in the lineup.

Without Wade this season, the Heat are just one game over .500 at 7-6. Now one would say that is a decent record, but you have to take it into context. The Eastern Conference is the absolute worst in the league with currently only four teams over the .500 mark, so you would figure that with or without Wade that the Heat still have the talent to blow out the opposition. This is obviously not the case. however.

Even without Wade, the Heat will of course make the playoffs, but good luck getting by the Indiana Pacers, who almost beat the Heat last season in the Conference Finals with a full roster, as the series went to a full seven games.

There is no arguing the importance of Wade to the Heat and I think there is no question that he is still the Heat's second best player.

Related Links:

Top 5 Reasons Why Dwyane Wade is Greatest Miami Heat Player of All Time

Chris Bosh Is Surpassing Dwyane Wade As Second Best Player On Miami Heat

Should Miami Heat Rest Dwyane Wade Until After NBA All-Star Break?