However, despite having a solid core of LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, the Heat have struggled on the road, going just 46-28. Whereas the team has a raucous fanbase behind it at home, the environment on the road appears to be just as hostile, except the opposing fans are rooting hard against the Heat as well as for their own team.
However, this year is bound to be different.
Miami is 4-1, and while they have gone 0-1 on the road thus far, the sole loss being a 104-84 loss to the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on November 2, the upcoming six-game trip will show us a new Miami Heat team that can play anywhere with ease.
Miami will face the following teams on the road: The Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Denver Nuggets and Phoenix Suns, before returning home to face the Milwaukee Bucks.
In terms of the road trip, that's six different states over an eight-day period—a lot of travel for any team regardless of talent.
However, the Heat will come away with at least four wins on this road trip for two reasons. First, as defending champions, they are hungry to get back to the NBA Finals and defend their title.
Second, for the first time since forming the Big Three, Miami actually has a viable second unit in the form of sharpshooters Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis. By having these silent assassins on the roster, the Heat now have the ability to score in bunches if any of their killer trio are having an off night.
Thus far, Allen has averaged 14.2 points off the bench while shooting an incredible 59 percent from three-point land, while Lewis has averaged 9.4 points and shot 47 percent from long range. Both men have been at the top of their respective games all season long, and on the road, they will be the key to the Heat's success.
Look at it this way.
Miami's greatest flaw on offense is that head coach Erik Spoelstra relies too much on his three stars. By taking advantage of who he has on his bench, particularly these two solid veterans, he will give Miami an even greater chance of winning and not risk tiring out James, Bosh or Wade.
That all being said, with Allen and Lewis carrying the Heat's second unit, the team will have a good road trip, and as a result, will prove themselves as the NBA's best. After struggling in Dallas during the 2011 Finals and in Oklahoma City last year, the Heat will finally be able to get over their road woes and prove that they can win anywhere, not just in South Beach.
At that point, opposing fans will have to just watch silently in their seats and hope that either Allen or Lewis is off that night.
Otherwise, they'll have to witness the Heat just go off and further cement their status as the reigning NBA champions—plus a dynasty in the making.
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