LeBron James Is Crowned the Best Male Athlete at the ESPYs, Heat Named Best Team

Joye PruittSenior Analyst IJuly 12, 2012

MIAMI, FL - JUNE 25:  LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat looks on during a rally for the 2012 NBA Champion Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena on June 25, 2012 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

LeBron James won the 2011-12 regular season MVP award. He went on to save the Miami Heat from elimination in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals and won his first NBA championship. Did I forget to relay that he was crowned the 2012 Finals MVP?

To finish off one of the most amazing seasons a player has ever had, LeBron James received the Best Male Athlete award while the Miami Heat snatched the Best Team award Wednesday night at the ESPYs.

It’s safe to say that Miami is shaping up to be the dynasty that James promised in the summer of 2010.

Don’t think so?

James came into this season with a target on his back and a franchise on his shoulders. Dwyane Wade reluctantly gave him a stranglehold on the organization because he didn’t have the physical leadership it took to get Miami a championship.

Does Wade’s mental capacity reign supreme over LeBron’s? Of course.

Wade’s mental toughness has never been the question. It has always been the knock on James that he was never able to cross that cerebral threshold. What made the Miami Heat such an impossible squad to thwart was their willingness to sacrifice the individual accolades and already proposed titles for the sake for the team.

Still think they didn’t deserve the Best Team award?

LeBron and Wade weren’t the only players that were spotted in the 2012 NBA Finals. The role players, which had been MIA for much of the postseason, ended up being the difference against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Shane Battier returned to Duke Basketball form and Mario Chalmers became a consistent clutch factor.

Chris Bosh should have never been labeled an afterthought. His injury forced him even deeper into the shadows and beyond starting lineup immediacy.

Then he was immediately needed.

Bosh played a perfect role in Miami’s game plan against the Thunder and towards the end of the Eastern Conference Finals as well.

Mike Miller also got into the act in Game 5, scoring 23 points and hitting seven three-pointers.

Norris Cole, the rookie? Talk about perfect plays at the perfect time. He hit several big three-pointers throughout the series, allowing the Heat to feed off his energy and build the necessary momentum.   

The Heat were not the ideal roster, but when it came time for them to expose franchises with chemistry and synchronicity, their game faces were on.

Best Male Athlete award?

LeBron James carried Miami to the point of no return. The 2012 NBA Finals were supposed to be his burial, not his coronation.

The 2011 NBA Finals were his plight and it came against an aging team that embarrassed everything Miami was supposed to stand for—youth, athleticism and a new age in the NBA (Just like the Oklahoma City Thunder this year).

In the end, LeBron cemented his team's legacy with one glorious playoff run.  

This is a just end to a magnificent season for the Miami Heat.

And the dynasty moves forward.