The Miami Heat: Deeper Than Advertised, 5 Reasons They Are in NBA Finals 2011

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The Miami Heat: Deeper Than Advertised, 5 Reasons They Are in NBA Finals 2011
Marc Serota/Getty Images

The Miami Heat's Big Three—Lebron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh—have received so much attention this season that you'd be forgiven for thinking they're the only players on the team.

The remainder of the team has not just been neglected, they've been actively cited by many experts as the reason Miami couldn't win a title. We all heard—especially after Game 1—that the Chicago Bulls were "too deep" for the Heat, had too much chemistry as a team and that their bench play would be the difference in the series. Well, that didn't turn out to be the case.

In the NBA Finals 2011, Miami face an even deeper team in the Mavericks, possibly even the deepest in the league. Yet with Bosh and James having, at best, merely solid performances, the Heat have still managed to take a 2-1 lead.

All season Miami has been called shallow. Yet they put some of the most consistent play together in the regular season. Sure, the Heat bench averaged less points per game than most other teams in the league. But was that because the team is shallow or because it knows when to defer to their three premier playmakers?

Now, in the postseason, we hear Miami's lack of depth is masked by the tendency of coaches to shrink their rotations down to around eight or nine key players. Is that the only reason the Heat have done well in the Playoffs, or are they a deeper team than we have given them credit for?

Here are five reasons why the latter might be the case.

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