A crowd of about 13,000 fans hadn’t even broken-in their LeBron James No. 6 Heat jersey’s when the sound coming through the amplifiers resonated against the walls of the American Airlines arena. The video on the jumbotron presented a dramatic display of images, each accentuated by drum beats that sent the Miami faithful in an uproar.
It was like as if at any moment Will Smith was going to pop out and perform his south beach anthem with the Heat dancers singing in the background, “Welcome to Miami.”
Hold up, can we back that up just a little bit? You mean to tell me the Heat’s grand display of exaggerated video promotions and pyrotechnics was not a championship celebration, rather a welcome party? No they didn’t.
The new-look Heat danced together on stage, answered questions and beamed with delight as the crowd went wild. There was no championship trophy, no sigh of relief after having experienced the blood, sweat and tears associated with winning a title, no ring to show for and no anticipated meet-up with the commander in chief. Without having so much as hitting the hardwood or fighting for position at tip-off, the Heat became the wannabe-defending champs—daring the rest of the league to step up and dethrone them.
The only thing the Heat accomplished last summer was inking a deal that linked three former franchise players—LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade. Nothing more, nothing less and certainly not meriting the pedestal they were so quickly perched up on by the media.