Join the conversation:

Life after LeBron: Miami Heat looking to earn a new kind of respect

Life after LeBron: Miami Heat looking to earn a new kind of respect

Posted by Liliana Castaño on September 30, 2014

Back when the fog machines were filling up the stage and the laser show was hyping up a Miami crowd in July of 2010, the Miami Heat were being told they needed to earn respect in order to act like like a championship team. They were celebrating assumed titles without actually having played a game with the newly formed Big Three of LeBron JamesDwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh. They were setting themselves up to be the villain before they had a chance to be basketball heroes as a unit.

After four years, four NBA Finals appearances in a row, two championships, and two NBA Finals losses, LeBron returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers this summer. People throughout the Heat organization sat in stunned silence when the news broke that James would return home to Ohio. The silence and stunned reaction didn't last very long for the Heat, Pat Riley, and coach Erik Spoelstra.

"Less than 10 minutes," Spoelstra said at Heat Media Day on Friday when asked how long the news of LeBron leaving impacted their organization. "We were looking at the board and trying to figure out, 'What's our next step?' But the way we're all wired, not even 10 minutes. It was probably at minute seven or eight, it was, 'OK, let's get to work.' And we stayed there at the office that night until two in the morning, all of us. Working the phones, trying to put together a plan, trying to get organized with a real objective plan of attack for the rest of free agency and how we want to move forward.

"It was very invigorating."

The Heat didn't have much choice. If they had their druthers, LeBron would have been suited up in a Heat jersey Friday, preaching the same "Heat code" and "Heat culture" that Spoelstra was reciting to fans and media members. Instead, LeBron was discussing his new era with the Cavaliers in Cleveland and the Heat were talking about reinventing their identity and informing people they're still going to be good team with a fourth title on their mind.

Selling that last part is a little tough. Few believe the Heat can compete for a title this season. You don't lose the best player in the world and get better, and they need to be better than last season to get back to where they want to be -- in the Finals for another shot to hoist the Larry O'Brien trophy.

Link To Full Article: 

Facebook comments



Monthly newsletter featuring articles hand picked by our country managers from the best content across PanamericanWorld.



Monthly newsletter featuring articles hand picked by our country managers from the best content across the Caribbean Region on PanamericanWorld.

PANAMERICANWORLD COUNTRIES