With the decision being made to bring LeBron James and Chris Bosh to partner with Dwyane Wade on South Beach, the Miami Heat organization changed the entire landscape of NBA basketball.
How it will play out? Well, we only have speculations and opinions.
In what felt like mere moments, one organization ascended to the top of basketball envy, and another seemingly fell off the map altogether.
Now a state of quandary has befallen most, if not all the teams not branded with the Heat logo. Never mind that general managers, coaches, and players are still perplexed about how an NBA team ended up with LeBron James and Dwyane Wade on it, and still managed to add Chris Bosh.
Someone had to sell their soul in order for this to happen, right?
Nevertheless, no one is conceding anything to the Miami Heat just yet. The common sentiment is that they look nice on paper, but the games have yet to be played.
That's funny. This kind of rhetoric wasn’t being used these past two seasons in regards to the Los Angeles Lakers. People had all but conceded that they would be the NBA Champions, even though they didn’t have the most balanced or talented roster in the league.
Why was that?
Many claimed they would win because they allegedly possessed the best basketball player on the planet, Kobe Bryant. Well he isn’t the best player and they weren’t champions because of him. They won because they were physically bigger than the Orlando Magic and the role players stepped up big time against the Boston Celtics.
But that was then and this is now.
And the now is very clear: The Miami Heat have the two most statistically dominant players over the past five seasons, and they didn't stop there. Miami has done some things that have pissed off the masses, even though it was perfectly within its right to do so. No NBA team is supposed to have this kind of talent assembled on one roster at one time, not in this era at least.
If this was the Lakers and Celtic franchises of the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s, this would be accepted as typical NBA business. If this was before the modern era of expansion, no one would even blink.
But it isn’t and naturally someone has to play the villain and someone must be cast as the hero.
So here we stand, James branded as a cowardly traitor and Kobe as the NBA’s one ray of hope. Talk about irony; show of hands if you saw this coming four years ago.
Kobe Bryant is officially back on top of everyone’s best player list. LeBron James is officially out of the MVP race. And Pat Riley is officially the most hated man in all the NBA.
The media is doing this because it knows that the only two stories worth telling barring any injuries to the trio of Miami will be how many games the Heat will win and will the Lakers make it back to the Finals to challenge them.
So let’s say that there really is a crystal ball that can predict the future (SMH) and it predicts that the Heat and Lakers will meet in the NBA Finals this upcoming season.
How would these two clubs stack up?
Who the heck would win?
Well, walk with me as I guide you through the roster breakdown and head-to-head matchups of each team.
(Yeah, that's Kobe Bryant hacking Dwyane Wade in LA this past season, and no whistle was called; Wade and his teammates better get used to it.)