Enjoy the Ride
So we got LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh.
Forget for a moment the strangeness of it all, forget the rightness or wrongness of it, and focus on what it means basketball-wise: The Heat are going to be one of the best teams ever assembled in the history of the sport.
In purely basketball terms, this is a work of pure genius; some might call it diabolical genius, but genius nonetheless. This is the Manhattan Project of professional basketball. These three players are seizing history, and this team, barring some natural catastrophe, will be nearly impossible to stop. Worried about the supporting cast, you say? Wade, James, and Bosh alone (and please never let me hear you call them "Miami Thrice") average 80 points a game between them. The supporting cast will work itself out.
We'll witness great basketball, maybe some of the best basketball ever seen. They will win. If they stay together, they'll bring home trophies in the coming years. Enjoy the ride.
|Bosh with a guy he'll likely see in the playoffs.|
So let's tackle this thing one figure at a time:
Chris Bosh: This one's easy. His reaction on Twitter said it all: "Yeeeeeaaaaah!!!" He's in heaven with this deal, and Miami is lucky to have him. Bosh is an intelligent guy with a great sense of humor who should have the time of his life. And because he's severely talented and driven, he's virtually guaranteed a starring role in the NBA's future canon of historic footage.
Dwyane Wade: I might have saved him for last, but I really don't see this as all that complicated for ol' Flash. Yes, his house, to a degree, is getting taken over by
Pat Riley: What can you say? He's revived Showtime for the third time. Sure this was primarily the brainchild of the three players now on the marquee, but Riley cleared the cap space and shepherded it through, playing the faithful handmaiden to history. He deserves to bask a little. Don't think Riles hasn't had his hard times. Oh Lord, the times that guy has seen, high and low. Remember the Hornets sweep when he watched the players he traded -- Jamal Mashburn and P.J. Brown -- not only upset his number-one seed but trounce them in a sweep? Last night on ESPN, they were talking about Riley's great aura; well, I've seen him looking old and tired and a little
LeBron James: Saved the most complicated one for last. Let's start with the way he let the world know about his decision. Heinous is an adjective that comes to mind. Last night, he essentially invited the girl he was dumping -- a downtrodden lass named Cleveland -- to his engagement party with a supermodel. On primetime national TV. Who could have imagined that wouldn't go so well? You can't blame Cleveland for burning him in effigy. You can't even blame Cleveland's owner for raving like a child and trying to put a curse on his head. You could tell James had an idea in the back of his mind that this was a disaster. He wasn't filled with joy so much as guilt, and it showed in his interviews. A couple of times, I thought he was going to cry. Was there no one to tell him the whole ESPN circus thing wasn't a good idea? And for James, it's not just the way he did it but the decision itself that could haunt him. Every truly great player that I can think of in the modern era has won his first championship with his first team. Magic. Bird. Isiah. Jordan. Kobe. Wade. People are always going to wonder if James could have done it without Wade. James knows this, but he decided to forgo millions of dollars to play with Wade and Bosh anyway. I think it was Elizabeth Taylor who called success a great deodorant. And if things go as planned, James and his teammates will smell pretty damned good no matter what mistakes were made last night.