Sunday, January 27, 2008

Miami Heat: Guh

I can't say that this season is breaking my heart, per se, because I am still basking in the afterglow of the 2006 championship. I know, pathetic, but after 20 years of being a Heat fan, that moment was a watershed, and it exorcised a lot of demons.

My take on this season to this point.

Disaster of a season, 2nd worst record in the league!
Main Causes:
Injuries - Shaq just went back on the DL for at least 2 weeks, probably a month (or longer) with 2 bad hips, inflammation and bursitis, this after missing 2 weeks last month and this month. Wade has yet to find his explosiveness and athleticism since coming off major shoulder surgery and knee surgery over the summer. Alonzo Mourning had a career ending major quad and ligaments tear. J-Will has been in and out of the lineup with knee problems and this is free agency year and has been terrible.

The Heat were on a 15 game losing streak, the longest since the lovable expansion team led by Rory Sparrow, Rony Seikaly, and Ron Rothstein's perm, which lost 17 in a row to start the season in 1988.
15 Wrong aka Team Depth - Riley gambled by not re-signing Jason Kapono & James Posey this offseason, and got stung by Mo Williams and Charlie Bell being matched on the offer sheets the Heat made. Dorell Wright has not developed as hoped. Ricky Davis has been disappointing. Mark Blount, a throw in from Minnesota needed in order to shed the contract of Antoine Walker has played better as a starter since Shaq & Zo went down.

Bright spots - It is comforting to think and actually believe that this disasterous slide could be brief; rookie Daequan Cook has been better than advertised (not spectacular, but could develop into a Vinnie Johnson type microwave off the bench). The Heat has lottery protection on this year's #1 from the Minnesota trade, as it stands now, the Heat with the 2nd worst record in the league would do no worse than the #5 overall pick in the deep draft.

They have a plan (and are sticking to it) to have tremendous cap room in 2010 when Shaq's deal comes off the books (along with basically everyone else's, Wade has a player option, and presumably Cook & 2008 rookie will be there but on relatively small deals). They can add 2 max contracts in addition to Wade if they want that year, when the likes of LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Carlos Boozer, Joe Johnson, Tracy McGrady, Jermaine O'Neal, Mike Miller, Andrew Bogut, Amare Stoudamire, Steve Nash, Raja Bell, & Manu Ginobili, can potentially be free.

Basically, they made a Faustian deal for the 2006 title, and it worked. The window slammed faster than they anticipated with Shaq and with Wade's new max deal coming in this year making the cap and tax tight, but winning the title justifies it.


Tupac Amaru III said...

Mo Williams wasn't matched by Milwaukee, he just chose them over our offer. Consider yourself pwn3d.

Lane said...

you are right
I have been shamed in my very first post - LM

A little fella from Australia said...

I have read much mightier blogs than yours my friend!

I also think you write a lot like Ira from the paper.

Rated G said...

I like the use of the Rothstein fro.