The Miami Heat have undoubtedly had a roller coaster ride of a year, with inconsistency, media spotlight and public scrutiny all playing factors in their first season as the "Super Team."
Injuries have also played a big role in Miami's season, with point guard Mario Chalmers becoming the most recent victim of the injury bug. Chalmers injured his right knee when he came down awkwardly in last week's game against Denver and will miss at least two weeks.
The Heat have already suffered key injuries to Udonis Haslem, Mike Miller and Zydrunas Ilgauskas this season, but still have found a way to fight through it.
However, Chalmers' injury does come at a costly time with less than 10 games remaining in the regular season.
Although it's an untimely injury, the Heat will look to the newly acquired Mike Bibby to fill in during Chalmers absence.
Despite the loss of Chalmers, Miami has won all three games in his absence and eight of their last nine. Here is why the Chalmers injury will not be an issue for "the Heatles."
While Mike Bibby is obviously aging and has his issues on defense, he still is Mike Bibby.
The fact is that he still remains a very solid point guard with excellent veteran leadership and playoff experience. Bibby has reached the postseason in eight of his 12 years in the league, and has played in some very meaningful games with the Kings earlier in his career.
In addition, he is still a very reliable shooter that can knock down the three-point shot late in games. In 13 games for the Heat so far, he has shot 47.8 percent from beyond the arc, including three games where he's made four or more three-pointers.
The Heat are 8-5 since signing Bibby, and he has begun to mesh with the team nicely. Bibby will more than fill the void in Chalmers absence.
If you can remember back to the beginning of the season, Carlos Arroyo was Miami's starting point guard. Chalmers was barely receiving any playing time over the season's first month.
While it's true that the Heat struggled in that first month, most people would agree those issues were not linked to Chalmers' lack of playing time.
Once Chalmers was inserted into the starting lineup, the Heat did improve, but a lot of that can be attributed to the Big Three gelling.
Miami has played without Chalmers before and they can play without him now.
We've all seen what Eddie House can do this year when he's actually given minutes. House's playing time this year has been extremely inconsistent, with coach Erik Spoelstra favoring him for short bursts sometimes and other times making him a bench warmer.
House has had some big games this year, namely his game-winning three-pointer against Oklahoma City. He is a clutch performer that's been a crucial role-player on a championship squad before.
With Chalmers out, House will see more minutes in the game. It will be his time to prove himself and earn a bigger role once the playoffs begin. With the postseason only a few weeks away, House can show the team now why he deserves a lot more time than he's been getting.
Regardless, House is not a bad option to have with Chalmers out. He will space the floor with his three-point shooting, as well as provide an immediate spark off the bench.
Although the Heat technically only have two "true" point guards on the roster, they really have four.
LeBron James and Dwyane Wade might as well be listed as point guards with the amount of time they've handled the ball this year.
Throughout most of the game, James and Wade can be seen bringing the ball up the court and acting as the facilitators on offense. In the fourth quarter, the ball is almost always in either one of the All-Star's hands.
With that being said, the impact of Chalmers injury is a lot less. The Heat can rely on their dynamic duo to handle some of the point guard responsibilities while Chalmers is recovering.
Despite the awkward fall and teammates having to carry Chalmers off the court, the third-year guard's injury is not that serious.
He sprained his knee and is only expected to miss two weeks. That is very fortunate considering how serious any knee injury could be.
Chalmers will be fully recovered and back in time for the playoffs, which is what matters most.
The Heat have nine games left in the regular season. Of those nine games, seven are against non-playoff teams and include the likes of Toronto, New Jersey and Minnesota.
Remember, Miami is 32-2 against teams with a sub .500 record and that is not because of Mario Chalmers. The Heat feed on weaker teams and have been doing it all year long.
Boston and Atlanta are the only two games left on the Heat's schedule that pose a challenge. Chalmers will most likely be back for those games as they aren't until April 10th and 11th, respectively.
Before those contests, Miami can bulk up their record against the bottom feeders of the league.
While they have been playing amazing all year, Miami's Big Three really seems to be on fire right now. They have finally found a way to be cohesive and work off each other's strengths.
In Sunday's victory over Houston, James, Wade and Bosh became the first trio since 1961 to finish with at least 30 points and 10 rebounds in a non-overtime game.
The outstanding trio is simply hitting on all cylinders right now. LeBron and Wade are scorching defenses as wing players and Bosh is finally being more aggressive. He has recorded a double-double in seven out of his last eight games.
Simply put, the Big Three will pick up the slack in Chalmers' absence. They are performing at the highest level of any point during the season, and it's at the right time with the playoffs right around the corner.
All year long, the Heat have been under scrutiny and high expectations. Every time they lose a game, they are criticized. Essentially anything they do, the media has something to say about it.
That is the cost of signing three high-profile free agents and then having a parade where LeBron said the infamous "not one, not two, not three..." line. The public has high expectations for the Heat and the team has been put under a microscope.
With all that comes a lot of pressure to meet their expectations. In addition to the pressure, Miami has had to deal with injuries, criticism and plenty of rumors (coaching change, trades, imploding of the team, etc). Through all these trials and tribulations, Miami has still been able to be successful.
After their highly criticized 9-8 start, the Heat have gone 42-14 and sit in third place in the Eastern Conference. The point is that they've dealt with adversity before.
The Heat have thrived while facing adversity this season and they will have to do the same thing with Chalmers out.