Posted by: mdegeorge | July 9, 2010

Don’t engrave the trophy just yet

Eventually, reality has to set in and displace the free agency mania sweeping Miami’s South Beach. That new reality should settle on the mid-major collegiate roster the Heat has assembled to surround its new three-headed superstar monster.

Yes, Chris Bosh, Dwayne Wade, and Lebron James form possibly the most formidable (and certainly most expensive) threesome in NBA history. But beyond that, this team is like a JV squad. It’s like a gym class where Pat Riley bargained to have the first three picks and let the other guy have the next 11.

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As it stands right now, Wade and Mario Chalmers will start in the backcourt. James will fit in as the small forward while Bosh plays power forward. That’s about all we know, since those four are the only player the Heat have under contract, now that they’ve been forced to trade away Michael Beasley to the Timberwolves for a draft pick and the cap space to rummage the bargain bin of players.

They also own the rights to their three second round draft picks: Dexter Pittman, Jarvis Varnado, and Da’Sean Butler. So that’s seven players for an 82-game season

Right now, it’s rife with problems. For one, throwing Pittman straight into a starting role in this situation could be disastrous to his development. If he’s ineffective, blame will fall on him if this team of superstars underperforms. If he can’t get the job done, it means increased responsibilities for Bosh in the low post, something he stated he didn’t want.

Plus, how will the troika work together? There’s certainly a distinction to be made based on their relationship as friends, making their coexistence easier since they all chose to come here than a group of players thrown together by management. I would think they would be able to work out their differences behind the scenes, but the potential for issues still exists.

I think they stem from Wade. A collection of stars such as this would work best with the ultimately unselfish point guard (a la Jason Kidd). What they have instead is the premier combo guard in Wade. How comfortable will he be in the role of distributor? And what happens when he doesn’t get the kind of shot totals he would like? All of that should work itself out if they are winning, but if things start to go downhill, they will go fast and furious.

Obviously, there will be a line of veterans thirsting for a title willing to work for the veteran’s minimum for a chance to have their names associated with this South Beach behemoth. But should one of the three go down to injury or be suddenly unhappy playing second fiddle, the fall from grace will be swift and brutal.


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