Let's see...what to write about? Oh yeah.......
And so it ends, not with "1, or 2, or, 3, or 4, or 5, or 6, but 7" as they so boastfully shouted at the beginning, when their world was verdant, parties celebrating their impending championships were everywhere, and all seemed possible. But then they were beaten at home in the finals by the upstart Dallas Mavericks in 2011, and they sandwiched that loss with this current series loss to the Spurs, finishing with a yawn inducing pedestrian 2-2 record in four NBA Finals. There's nothing special about a team that wins two of four.
The Spurs are a special team. Five titles in fourteen years, four in twelve, one every three years for a decade and a half. Numbers that the Heat boasted about, but cannot and will not achieve. The Spurs were built and rebuilt by shrewd basketball moves, not pouting superstars who couldn't win on their own. "We're a true team" said Tony Parker after he won his 4th title with Tim Duncan and Parker Ginobili, the obvious reference to the Heat unspoken and unnecessary. A draft-day trade three years ago (not a rant from a spoiled star) brought Kawhi Leonard, who now is all of 22 years old, and was named the series MVP. Boris Diaw, a journeyman reserve joined the team last year. This year he started in the finals. This is not a team of quick fixes where the inmates run the asylum (Carmelo Anthony anyone?). This is a team built on fundamentals and this is a team built to last. With 5 titles in 14 years, the success of the Spur's philosophy speaks for itself.
"Not a day went by that I didn't think of game six" admitted Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, alluding to the last 30 seconds of the game that saw the championship slip from the Spur's grasp last year. So what did the Spurs do? Throw money at every free agent superstar? Let Tim Duncan draw up game plans and decide who the team would sign? No, the Spurs are a Team, and the coach coaches, the players play, and all they do is win. Five in fourteen years. Four in twelve. A dynasty built on a firm foundation.
It remains to be seen whether Miami's "tres leeches" (don't email us, we know we spelled it wrong if tres leches is what we wanted to spell, which we didn't) will bring the promised seven titles to this City. Titles guaranteed before one got old, and another was exposed as average, and a third was and remains a failed television reality show participant ("I've decided to bring my talents to South Beach"); a spectacle of showmanship, lacking the pride, intensity, and integrity that separates champions that endure (Duncan) from spectacles that glitter and fade (insert your heat player here). Ephemeral wisps of braggadocio, backed up by words and fist bumps and high fives, and finger pointing and outlandish celebrations, but not by deeds and titles.
The Boston Celtics won eleven championships from 1957 to 1969. Michael Jordan led his Bulls to six- three before he retired, and three when he came back. Showtime in LA won four. The Heat, like any so-so team that puts together a few decent seasons? Two in four. Nothing special. But then again, what did you expect from a team built without character?
All that glitters is not gold.
And so it ends, not with a bang, not with seven, but with a whimper, four blow-out losses in five games. A championship series in name only because it wasn't close. The 1927 Yankees versus the 1962 Mets. A champion versus a joke, a pretender exposed. A twisted ankle. No AC. Heat, cramps, excuses. The emperor has no clothes, and Miami doesn't have a championship basketball team.
There will be no ring ceremony to start the 2014-2015 Miami Heat season. There won't be flashing lights, and people dancing in the aisles in the Miami arena. No parades down Biscayne Boulevard in June this year either. June 2014 is marked in Miami by an arena that emptied in the early third quarter, and scattered boos, by fans who were promised more. Lose? It's not allowed for the Heat. Why, if they can't win four of seven then make the series five of eight, or six of nine. Change the rules, do anything, just let us dance with wild abandon in our thousand dollar seats and celebrate championships and hug strangers and stand in fetid heat on Biscayne Boulevard while our stars drive by in air conditioned limos, because anything less is not fun, and this is Fun-Town USA.
Oh, and one more thing.
The era of sellouts and Miami Heat tickets being tough to get is over as well. Because if there is one thing about this town, like their phony basketball team, Miami is a bunch of spoiled, bandwagon jumping fans who have as much loyalty as a Donald Sterling girlfriend.
Just ask the Dolphins and the Marlins and the Panthers about that.
See you in court.
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