The Miami Heat have the fourth best record in the Eastern Conference and they’re a top five NBA team both offensively and defensively. However, when a team loses consecutive games to the Grizzlies and Pacers after a summer where they signed the three top free agents available and declared that they wanted to win six titles, it doesn’t look good. Ergo, the Miami Heat don’t look good.
And while there are a myriad of problems — injuries, a probably overwhelmed coach, Juwan Howard’s nose bandage — there is one concern that troubles the Heat’s best player more than anything: they’re not having enough fun.
Seriously, that is the main concern. From ESPN:
“There is a point where you have to be serious and you need to be serious,” James said. “Just because you’re having fun on the court and having fun in practice doesn’t mean you’re not serious. I’m always serious about the game. But you’ve got to have fun while you’re doing it. We’re not doing that right now, we’re not having fun at all.” [...]
“That is how I played the game of basketball, I have fun with it,” James said. “It has helped me get to the point where I am today as a professional athlete. I don’t think I’ve brought that to this team thus far.” [...]
“There is only so much anger that can take care of a ball game,” James said. “You still have to go out and play. We need to play with the confidence we had earlier in the season. We need to have more fun.”
Well, that is certainly one fun-centric theory of basketball improvement. Extremely fun-centric, in fact. But if LeBron James thinks he needs to get back to dancing around and pre-game handshake rituals then maybe that is what the Heat should do.
Or, as Sebastian Pruiti points out, the Heat could try playing better interior defense by helping each other out. Additionally, as Kelly Dwyer mentions, they could play an offense that isn’t just a series of turn-taking one-on-one play. These are also solutions to the Heat’s “losing to mediocre teams” problems that they’ve been having.
Nah. It’s probably just the no-fun-having that’s causing them to lose. Better hire a choreographer because I can’t imagine Jamaal Magloire is the next Fred Astaire.