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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

From The Ashes-State Of The Miami Heat

Posted by Eboy

Written by Cheryl & Eboy (of course)

The 2008 NBA Draft had us nervous. For a couple of weeks, the buzz coming from the MIA was that the Heat were in position to make one of the largest mistakes in the history of the draft by allowing themselves to be talked out of drafting perhaps one of a handful of "team changing" talents that only comes along every couple of years because of what some perceived as a immature style and a questionable work ethic. Luckily, Pat Riley listened to his advisors and made the correct move. Taking Michael Beasley with the 2nd pick gives this young talent the opportunity to showcase his skills and gives a franchise on life-support its own personal defibrillator. The fact they were able to somehow get a serviceable young point guard in a trade for not much in the loss column was a bonus that may be the dark horse of all dark horses. It's time for a change, finally.

Last year, the Heat had limited talent, a complete lack of professionalism and team chemistry akin to the relationship of Batman and the Joker. This summer, the groundwork of the future is there for the molding, and new Heat coach Erik Spoelstra is just the man to get it formed. A Riley disciple, Spoelstra will have a take-no-shit attitude with more in common with his players being that he is, oh....60 years younger than Riles. A team of old vets just a season ago now fields a young core, led by the still rehabbing, soon to be called upon Dwyane Wade.

Let's not fool ourselves; the team will get off only if the D-Wade of 2006 can return to prominence. We're holding out hope that he can get back there, because it's been a long two seasons trying to stand up for the guy while the team crumbled around him. Eboy was one of his harshest critic's for a while too, because hey, if you can't drop the hammer on the one's you love, who can? The injuries got him, a bit of big-headedness did too & some off court personal issues ate at him as well. Hopefully this summer's Olympic performance and the promise of a gold medal will be a big jumpstart towards his return to greatness.

Let's hope we don't need to say "B Easy with the elbows" too often.

The other major building block comes to the Heat with minor reservations about his off the court style but his talent is just the shot the Mojito stained fans in Miami have been waiting for since they purchased their championship gear in '06. Michael "B-Easy" Beasley is just what the Heat needed. A scorer, a rebounder, a battler, a fresh face. Someone who may be happy to be wearing the red and black of the Heat instead of viewing it as a chore as did many of the Heat's players over the last couple of forgettable seasons. The thought of Beasley and Wade mixing an inside outside game is intriguing. This is not Shaq/Wade with eyes on a title in a season or two. This is a move for the future. The not too distant future, as it stands.

Mixed in with perennial warrior Udonis Haslem, and the real possibility of Alonzo Mourning bringing himself back to close the final chapter of his career on his own terms, they can give Beasley help on the blocks at the defensive end and some seasoning on the offensive side, there's hope for a turnaround. Mario Chalmers is another piece to this future puzzle. While he may not come in take the reigns early as the new Chicago Bull in training, Derek Rose will, the promise of a defensive minded, sharp shooting guard is just what this team needs, and the kind of player Pat Riley covets. If they can find a veteran that can groom Chalmers and have him gain some good experience over the next two seasons, the summer of 2010 shapes up to be huge for this team. Finally, the Heat can awaken to some South Florida sunshine, after two years ducking in and out of one of Miami's fiercest summertime thunderstorms.

The other big name that sits on the Heat's roster is Shawn Marion. Yes, the Artist formerly known as the Matrix. Marion made little impact on the Heat in the mid season deal that sent Shaquille O'Neal to the desert. His biggest impact is felt by the contract relief that Shaq's deal amounted too, and his decision to not opt out means that he is prepared to move and the Heat, for the right deal, will move him. Otherwise, they will welcome the cap relief he presents them after next season. For this season, though, what can the Heat get for Marion is the question. While we would hope they could gather that veteran point guard to run the team, a legit center is needed too. The mid-level exemption is available, so there's pieces that can be played to bolster the roster. And besides, Marion will play his ass off to get that 50 to 60 million dollar deal he's looking for. Yes, the sun will shine again for the Miami Heat it's just a matter of time when the clouds break and those rays start hitting all the right places.

Wouldn't mind seeing more of this Dwyane.


Hursty said...

Nice stuff eboy/aspov. But you know as well as I do (probably more) that the Heat are still going to suck well into the next year or so. If the 2nd banana is Ricky Buckets when Wade is off the floor your dealing with some serious issues.

Tariq al Hayder said...

Nice work Cheryl and (shockingly) Eboy.


Are you saying Ricky isn't good enough to be the second option ON THE SECOND UNIT! Dang, man, you're harsher than Shaq.

I think the Heat can get to the 2nd round of next year's playoffs in the East.

Tariq al Hayder said...

Of course, assuming Wade is anywhere near his old self.

Eboy said...

Thanks Hursty & Tariq (kind of). Hursty, I'm no fool. I don't think the Heat get to the playoffs next season. Maybe a 20 win turnaround somewhere in the area of 35 wins. It's a start to a better future. If they can be playoff ready by 2010 though, then maybe they can convince Wade to stay and make a run at, if not convince, Brooklyn Bron then make a move towards Bosh.

Hursty said...

If Wade is healthy they can finish top 10 in the east. 5 teams are guranteed a spot in WIZ, cle (healthy Bron) Det, BOS. raptors and magic should make it. thats 6. toss up between PHI and ATL (depending on Smith and Iggy), Nets, pacers, bobcats are all wldcards. Bucks HAVE to make the playoffs with that starting 5. Real tight competition for the final 3 spots imo.

TADOne said...

Beasley is overrated because he is left-handed, and as a rule left-handed people are always overrated.

Hursty said...

Are you saying that I am over-rated Tad?

TADOne said...

If you are indeed left handed Hursty, then yes. But that was more of an underhanded shot at Eboy.

Eboy said...

I hate TAD. He's just jealous that he can only use his left hand for chokin' the chaplin.