The Miami Heat were an expansion team back in 1988 and culminated in a 2006 championship. That was a loaded roster that contained Shaquille O' Neil, Dwyane Wade, Antoine Walker, Jason Williams, James Posey, Gary Payton and Alonzo Mourning. After the championship celebrations however, the Miami Heat started to decline. The next season, the Miami heat were riddled in misfortune and culminated in the being eliminated by the Chicago Bulls in the first round. In February 5, 2008, Shaq was sent to Phoenix for Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks and this ended Miami's championship run and started the rebuilding process.
After this, Miami never got farther than the first round of the playoffs. Pat Riley however, was shrewd enough to shed salaries and furiously created cap space for the Lebron James headlined free agency bonanza.Despite not being one of the front-runners in this race, Miami comes out as the big winner. It has gotten the three biggest catches in the free agent market: Lebron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. This is like 3/5 of the starting line-up for the East All-Star squad. Unlike the previous 2006 Miami championship squad, this core is young and not a bunch of veterans on their last legs.
This team is rounded off with Mario Chalmers, Dexter Pittman, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Joel Anthony, Carlos Arroyo, Kenny Hansbrouck, Udonis Haslem, Juwan Howard, James Jones, Jamaal Magloire and Mike Miller. This gives the team plenty of fire power offensively and plenty of veteran experience. The team also has the height. Standing at 6'8"are Lebron James, James Jones and Udonis Haslem. Standing at 6'9" are Joel Anthony and Juwan Howard. Standing at 6'10" are Chris Bosh and Dexter Pittman. Standing at 6'11"is Jamaal Magloire. Standing at 7'3"we have Zydrunas Ilgauskas.
Overnight, Miami has become a fringe playoff team into a championship contender. It would be fun to watch seeing the pieces fit together and meshing. Whether this team has the capability to beat Boston, Orlando, Chicago and Los Angeles remains to be seen.