After all the hype, all the talk of Durant and Lebron being the next Magic and Bird, all the expectations that had been put on the NBA Finals, things ended with a whimper, and a sudden realization. The Miami Heat are a dynasty in the making.
We had forgotten that fact – maybe because of their shortcomings a year ago, maybe by choice – and somehow the narrative of the NBA Finals became the Heat and Lebron chasing something that was out of their reach. In reality, the celebration last night in Miami was inevitable, and that’s what made it so disappointing for the other 29 NBA fanbases.
For as good as Kevin Durant is (and he will be back), there should have been little doubt that this was going to happen. As the Heat struggled to get past Indiana and Boston, it was easy to think of them as just another team. Watching them rout the Thunder on their way to their first of what will be many, many titles was like being woken from a dream by a bucket of cold water. This is the real NBA, where Lebron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh teamed up to form an unstoppable force for the rest of the decade. If you don’t like it, too damn bad. They’re here to stay.
Any sport needs to walk a thin line when it comes to greatness and dynasties; there needs to be a team that everyone is shooting for, but it has to be plausible to do so. In any given season, 20-25 NBA franchises know full well they aren’t winning a title in October. The few teams that remain just watched the Heat dissect a 47-19 Thunder team like it was a scrimmage. When the Heat were dysfunctional, and Lebron was seen as being “not clutch”, they were within a hair of the title. Now that they seemingly have figured it all out, is there anyone that can keep this team from winning the titles Lebron promised at his introduction ceremony two years ago?
This is why many basketball fans watched last night’s celebration with a sinking feeling gnawing in their stomach. It’s not about The Decision, or The Big Three, or “not one, not two, not three…”, it’s about knowing that things are going to be really status quo in the NBA for a while. Inevitability is boring. Last night wasn’t so much a celebration as it it was a coronation, with King James finally sitting on the throne. And it’s really, really hard to depose a King.
Matt Regashus is the producer of The Bill Michaels Show. Follow him on twitter @mregashus. Questions? Comments? E-mail him at email@example.com