You can only celebrate and savor for so long.
For NBA champions, the next season starts just after the last one ends. And so, after the Miami Heat beat the San Antonio Spurs in seven games and held another outdoor parade and indoor rally, the questions quickly turned to the 2013-14 season.
Can the Heat three-peat?
It won't be easy. Not with Derrick Rose returning for the Chicago Bulls and Russell Westbrook returning for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Not with San Antonio still a threat and the Indiana Pacers rising up the ladder.
Not with their financial limitations, over the salary cap and the luxury tax, without many quality young players in the system and without much of a trade market for some of their past-prime veterans.
And not in light of history.
Pat Riley never even did it when he coached the Showtime Lakers.
Dwyane Wade put that in context:
Magic’s never done it, right? That’s Magic Johnson. He’s got five rings, he’s never won three in a row. That shows how tough it is. But we’re going to throw our hat in the ring and see what we come out with. We’re going to be back next year, hungry again to try to continue to place ourselves in history.
Their 27-game winning streak put to rest most questions about the Heat's motivation. They care. They also have the person whom Wade calls "the best (bleeping) player on the planet" in LeBron James.
But the Collective Bargaining Agreement is working against James, Riley and the Heat.
They have work to do to stay at the top.
All quotes for this piece were collected through the course of the author's coverage of the Miami Heat for the Palm Beach Post.