Who will make it to the NBA Finals from the Eastern Conference this year? Everyone seems to be bowing down to the self-proclaimed King, but are the Heat in for a rude awakening? After assembling three of the most talented players in the league, many pro basketball prognosticators want to anoint the Miami Heat as the 2010-11 NBA Champions. Most, at the very least say they will make it to the Finals.
I find a few holes in this theory. First, while Wade has continuity from being a member of the Heat since he was drafted, what about the likes of LeBron and Bosh? Both LeBron and Bosh are coming into a new system, with a new coach and expectations the likes of which have never been seen.
Second, one of the key elements to their success this year will be how will they co-exist throughout the season. Some will point to their first two games and say that it was LeBron that lead the team in the first game and Wade in the second. Balance is being achieved. Is it really? Wade and LeBron BOTH need to be the ALPHA Dog(leader of the pack), how will this be possible over an 82 game season. Bosh seems just happy to be a part of it all.
Third, while talent is necessary, it isn’t the only thing needed to win a championship. If great talent wins titles, what about the Dallas Mavericks. A few years ago they had one of the most talented rosters in the league, and yet they lost in the FIRST ROUND to the 8th seeded Golden State Warriors! Why? While Golden State’s talent was not near the talent of the Mavs, Golden State was the better TEAM. Every part must work together to accomplish greatness.
Finally, take another look at last year’s playoffs. The Celtics versus the Cavs. The Cavs came into the playoffs with the best record, Boston came in with three old guys. In the worst display of quitting that I have ever seen, LeBron gave up. He knew that he wasn’t re-signing with the Cavs. He knew that the Celtics were the better team. He decided to take his tremendous talent and join with other tremendous talents to overcome a TRUE team. Remember this Mr. James, TALENT rarely will beat a TRUE TEAM.
Are the Miami Heat the best team in the East? Absolutely not. Do they have the most talent? Even this can be debated. You have the Celtics, who are the defending East champ, and while they are getting “a little long in the tooth,” are extremely talented. Then you have the Magic, who everyone seems to disregard. Sure, the only place they win talent wise is at the Center position, but if you add up their parts, they are the deepest team in the league. The Magic’s second unit could make it into the playoffs. Could any other squad say that? No.
Who will be the Eastern Conference Champ this year? Miami? Boston? Orlando? It will all depend on who has the best TEAM and not necessarily the best TALENT! It will take a team that will refuse to give up no matter what the critics say. It will take a team that trusts in each other and is ready to go to battle each and every night.
While the Heat may win a championship, I don’t see it happening this year. The Eastern Crown, as well as the Southeast Division, will go to the Orlando Magic. Will they be able to get over the hump and win a title this year? Well, you know what they say…the third time’s the charm!