Sunday 27th May 2018,
The Hoop Doctors

Dwyane Wade and LeBron James Haven’t Talked About 2014

As the Miami Heat already know, NBA title runs are short lived.

South Beach’s finest paraded around on Monday in celebration of their second straight championship. Before Dwyane Wade and LeBron James could even blink, questions pertaining to the summer of 2014 and all the uncertainty has to offer began to flank them.

When asked about if he had talked to LeBron about what the plan is beyond next season, Wade said he had not.

Not that Wade would have copped to anything if they did. They didn’t come out and announce their inevitable pairing more than a year before it happened the first time around and they’re not about to concede anything similar now after they’ve won a second title together.

Speaking of championships and trophies that are shiny, future free agency isn’t on Wade’s mind at all right now (apparently). He’s zeroing in on doing what Magic Johnson’s Lakers could never even do—win three straight championships.

Describing a three-peat as difficult is a gross understatement for anyone not-named Michael Jordan, who did so twice.

The Heat are going to have a bigger target on their back than ever before leading into next season. Title defenses are considered more arduous than the previous campaign itself, and for a good reason. The more championships you win, the longer your playing, the more teams want to beat you.

Think about that. Routinely playing over 100 games of basketball takes a toll on the body. Especially Wade’s fragile body. Doctors have actually instructed him to take a month off from basketball altogether.

Mortality is the enemy of dynasties. All great regimes are going to fall eventually and if Wade isn’t good to go next season or is even a semblance of what he was during the postseason, the Heat’s quest for a third successive title becomes that much harder.

Fittingly enough, Miami’s success or lack thereof next season will speak volumes about the very future Wade sidestepped at the Heat’s parade. After winning a third title, it’s difficult to imagine LeBron and Wade splitting up the band on their own accord. And Micky Arison has done nothing to suggest he’s not willing to foot the luxury-tax bill of all luxury-tax bills.

Losing complicates just about everything, though. Depending on how early the Heat would fall, breaking up may seem like the logical move. Wade will be older, LeBron will still be in his prime and Chris Bosh will still be Chris Bosh. If that combination of star talent isn’t enough to win a title next season, it could be perceived as South Beach’s championship window slamming shut.

But we’re getting ahead ourselves. There’s no telling what Miami will do next season. The Heat will contend for another title, we know that much. Beyond that, their success is predicated on the impact/frequency of injuries, the strength of opposing teams and how awesome LeBron decides to be.

For now, we should let them enjoy what will be a relatively pressure-free offseason. It won’t be long before the weight of ambivalence begins to bear down upon them once again anyway.

Dan Favale is a firm believer in the three-pointer as well as the notion that defense doesn’t always win championships. His musings can be found at in addition to Follow @danfavale on Twitter for his latest posts and all things NBA.

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