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Is Reggie Evans right? Should Heat’s title have asterisk?

Jan 31, 2013, 11:35 AM EDT

Oklahoma City Thunder v Miami Heat - Game Five Getty Images

It’s easy to dismiss Reggie Evans because he’s Reggie Evans. NBA “tough guy” who’s built like a tank but has earned fines for flopping. A guy who comes up on every list when you talk about dirtiest players in the league. He doesn’t exactly have the NBA’s most impressive resume.

But his comments about the Heat — made before the Heat routed his Brooklyn Nets — seem to have struck a chord. From the New York Daily News:

“It doesn’t prove nothing,” the Nets forward told the Daily News when asked what it would mean to beat the defending champs. “That was a lockout season.”

LeBron said after Wednesday’s win he let his game do the talking — 24 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists — but then he did some talking to the Daily News anyway.

“It did (get to me),” James said… “Because no one knows what it takes unless you’ve done it. You can’t sit here and judge and talk about a team winning a championship unless you’ve done it. He hasn’t done it.”

Is Evans right? Should we view the Heat title with suspicion?

They played 66 regular-season games, not 82, but then a full slate of playoff games. Does that deserve an asterisk next to the record?

Some people think so. Evans seems to have struck a chord with the many out there rooting against the Heat.

I would say “ask me again in 10 years.”

Look at the San Antonio Spurs, they won the 1999 NBA title, the first for that franchise, after a lockout-shortened regular season with 50 games.

Last time I looked, there is no asterisk next to that title in the record books and people don’t view that title as tainted — because the Spurs went on to prove three more times they were an NBA championship team. That lockout title may have been their first but they climbed the mountain three more times, you know the Spurs are legit. To this day.

For the Heat, if they build a legacy with more titles for this group then we will not look back on that first one with any suspicion. Same as with the Spurs. Win more rings and 2012 will be the season LeBron finally matured mentally enough to tap into his full potential and lead a team to a ring.

But if the Heat never win another title with this group? Maybe in a decade we will raise our eyebrows at it as a one-off, and maybe the lockout will play into that as one of the reasons.

Still, as LeBron said, they have climbed the mountain now and know what it takes to get there. Recent NBA history suggests that teams that win one ring win multiple ones, and the Heat are certainly contenders so long as LeBron, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are together. If they win another ring this year or next, we’re not going to think anything of that first title.

And then we’ll laugh off Reggie Evans and not take him seriously. Which is what we do with most things he says now anyway.

  1. mungman69 - Jan 31, 2013 at 1:27 PM

    “It doesn’t prove nottin”. What then?

  2. gvargas1221 - Jan 31, 2013 at 1:28 PM

    Question is, would Evans be saying that if he himself won the title? I doubt it.

    • hehateme2 - Feb 1, 2013 at 7:05 AM

      Stupid article. Why comment on ignorance and envy?

      • jonnylongnuts420 - Feb 1, 2013 at 9:31 AM

        why did you comment than? haha

  3. lemfaxx - Jan 31, 2013 at 1:32 PM

    If u win a championship in game 7 with a last second lucky shot it is. But 50, 60 or 80 + games are just the battle for the standing so it does not matter. The factor is how the teams manage their roster all season so they can make it to the post season which is the real battle of the best teams and only one team declared as a champion and no question about it. If u have doubt do it yourself:)

  4. yousuxxors - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:08 PM

    i honestly think its harder to win in a lock out shortened season. barely any rest, no practices and how many back to back games did every team have? they still won all those 7 game series and they were in the finals the year before. lock out made it harder in my opinion

    • guyaneserj - Jan 31, 2013 at 5:47 PM

      Agreed

      • loungefly74 - Feb 1, 2013 at 7:45 AM

        no asterisk. the played the same type of season as everybody else…

    • daddyghi - Jan 31, 2013 at 9:33 PM

      If any thing else, it deserves an asterisk for being the toughest season to win a championship. all those compresed schedules, little resting time and lack of preparation, it definitely takes its toll to the players. Not a miami/lebron fan but hey! give those guys some credit.

      • Foul Dwimmerlaik - Jan 31, 2013 at 11:56 PM

        Agreed.

        Completely.

        But just to shut up those unbelievers, the Heat should win more titles. As Kurt mentioned, look at the Spurs.

  5. southsidegroovin281 - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:16 PM

    Yes it should have an asterisk…like he said the spurs did it in 99 but proved to do it over and over again. The fact that, that was the worse officiated finals ever. And I had no horse in the race I just wanted to see a great series. Lebron got to travel & foul his ARSE off in that series. Let the Lebron fans hate. They never want to hear the truth.

  6. scalfor3 - Jan 31, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    I hate Lebron, Wade and the Heat as much as anyone but that title was legit. They played the same amount of games as everyone else. They won four playoff series, just like everyone else. They convincingly beat the best team the West had to offer. They earned it.

    • Peter Blood - Jan 31, 2013 at 7:15 PM

      I hate Duncan, Popovich and the Spurs as much as anyone but that title was legit. They played the same amount of games as everyone else. They won four playoff series, just like everyone else. They convincingly beat the best team the East had to offer. WHOOPS!
      ;-)

  7. 00maltliquor - Jan 31, 2013 at 3:23 PM

    Sorry. I love LeBron and all but any team winning a title in a lockout shortend season has an *asterisk. Point blank.

    So many factors…had it been an 82 game season would LeBron have found a way to get injured? Wade? Would Rose be avalible for the Bulls? Would the Celtics really would have found their groove even more so later on? Same for the Thunder. Etc. etc. etc. etc.

    Look, personally I think the Heat would have tooken it no matter what, 20 game season, 50 game season, 82 game season,100 game season, whatever that year. But it STILL has an asterisk nonetheless.

    You have to prove it in an 82 game season like everybody else.

    • mannyfresh209 - Feb 5, 2013 at 7:24 PM

      Derrick Rose hurt himself in the playoffs. I’m really dumbfounded by the point you’re attempting to make, sir.

      Ask yourself this, “What advantages can one gain, by playing in a condensed season with less games, but much more wear/tear due to the volume of games in a shorter amount of time?”

      Once you realize the Heat, on average, were old as dirt, you might shut up.

      Until then, keep dreaming of that asterisk. Only way it’s getting there, is if one day LeBron comes out on the steroids-since-2011 report.

  8. canehouse - Jan 31, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    Knicks in 5, Pacers in 6, Celtics in 7, Thunder in 5!!! No asterisk deserved… What was deserved is the Larry O’Brien trophy! Every team had the same road to travel… Miami navigated it without an exit.

  9. miamatt - Jan 31, 2013 at 4:12 PM

    No.

    What really counts in the NBA is the playoffs, and there were absolutely no changes in the playoff format. There are no real upsets in the NBA playoffs, the very nature of a 7 game series eliminates the possibility of the “any given night” scenario.

    16 games less in the regular season hardly makes a difference; I’d challenge any hardened NBA fan to state that what it’s really about is giving the best performance over the course of a regular season. And any chance of injury that is lessend by playing 16 fewer games is countered by having to play so many games in a short span of time, which affects how much time the body has to heal over the course of a season.

  10. bowens3181 - Jan 31, 2013 at 4:34 PM

    Unless someone can logically make the argument that the Heat were playing on an uneven playing field last year, that they somehow gained an advantage over other teams even though everyone played the same amount of games, I don’t really understand the asterisk talk. Especially in basketball, the regular season barely even matters, and the 16 fewer games they played last year definitely do not cheapen their championship, since they still had to play the same amount of playoff games as usual. Arguing that the Heat’s championship from last year is somehow cheapened doesn’t actually make any sense, it’s just a way for bitter fans to try and discredit Lebron and his teammates, and we wouldn’t even be having this discussion had the Thunder, Celtics, or any other team had won. In fact calling the Heat’s championship cheapened is equally, if not more insulting to the teams that didn’t win, as it insinuates that “they couldn’t even win in a shortened season”, which, for some reason, presumably makes it easier.

  11. tigerpork - Jan 31, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    Haters always find an excuse.

  12. jacksprat57 - Jan 31, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    Let’s extend Reggie’s ‘logic’, shall we? The NFL used to play mere 14-game or 12-game seasons, with post-seasons that were also shorter. MLB used to play 154-game seasons, with as few as ONE post-season series to be played.

    Shall we also discount those Championships with an asterisk? Hell, no. Reggie is a twit; what’s more, OP is another, merely for seriously entertaining an idea which has appeal only for twits and haters.

    • badintent - Jan 31, 2013 at 6:38 PM

      When I hear the name of Reggie , I think of” 48 Hours” and Eddie Murphy saying, “There’s a new sheriff in town and his name is Reggie, Reggie Hamilton.You best remember that .”

  13. cantonbound13 - Jan 31, 2013 at 6:08 PM

    Absolutely deserves an asterisks. Half the leagues all stars were injured. Is there any coincidence that the final four teams had the same roster as the year before? & the defending champs, Dallas, tore apart their teams.

    • frankesslin - Feb 1, 2013 at 10:18 AM

      Yeah, like Wade, Bosh, and Miller weren’t hurt. Wade got knee surgery in July, Mike Miller could barely walk between plays, and Bosh missed two series. Every team had injuries including the Heat. And is it somehow the Heats fault what Cuban and Dallas’ front office decided to do in the offseason? You are as logical as Reggie Evans.

  14. golfrangeman - Jan 31, 2013 at 6:56 PM

    Maybe put an asterisk next to every team that won a title against a team with an injured player. Lakers against celtics ( Perkins ) celtics lakers (Bynam). Hay what if you only played 80 games asterisk their too.

  15. snaxdsp - Jan 31, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    *

  16. philtration - Jan 31, 2013 at 8:27 PM

    I say put an asterisk next to it just to see if it will make LeBron, Wade and Bosh cry again.

  17. deiong - Jan 31, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    it needs an astrix not because of the short season but because stern had to give it to them, they didnt earn it at all.

  18. spthegr8 - Jan 31, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    Everyone played the same amount of games, the Heat had no advantage over any other team because the season was shorter than usual

  19. bigwii - Jan 31, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    I’m not saying it does but look at the facts here Derrick Rose was injured, and Avery Bradley was injured too. And before you jump to conclusions on how that doesn’t matter look at stats, the Celtics are undefeated against the Heat when Avery Bradley starts and DRose and the Bulls were a better team last year ryan the Heat because they exposed the Heat’s biggest weaknesses just saying. Not to mention they had a lot if help from the refs and if you deny that you either didn’t watch the games or don’t know basketball.

  20. Foul Dwimmerlaik - Feb 1, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    If people would be downplaying a shortened season, why bother playing then?

    It would be hypocritical for some fans to be rooting for their respective teams in high heavens during a lockout season only to be bitter and wave off the champion’s win and efforts just because it is not the team that their rooting for.

    That Heat Ring is legit. The King has finally gotten a ring.

    Bitter fans should learn to deal with that. Evans? Talk smack to the Heat when you have yourself one ring too… and you’ll realize how idiotic your comment was.

    BTW, I’m a Laker fan. No hating. Just saying what it is.

  21. kavika6 - Feb 1, 2013 at 2:00 AM

    The only reason for an asterisk the Heat deserve is because of their soft eastern conference schedule. While the big teams battled it out in the western conference the Heat should have breezed through their eastern schedule, regular season and playoffs. I have to admit though, as much as I hate the Heat, that other than some questionable officiating during the finals the Heat knocked off their western opponent. The 2012 Heat and the 1999 Spurs deserved their championship.

    Evans and Phil Jackson are just crybabies and I know if their respective team had won it that year the would consider it legit.

  22. aboogy123456 - Feb 1, 2013 at 9:12 AM

    I agree that Lebron and the Heat deserved the title and there shouldn’t be an asterisk, but the season really played to their advantage for a couple reasons:

    1) the condensed schedule played to Lebron’s advantage. He’s a physical beast and I think one of the few people that can get through a season like that. While other guys were getting injured and playing tired many games through the season, it didn’t affect lebron. This is a reason why lebron is so good, but the shortened season played to his advantage.

    2) the road to the championship was one of the easiest I can ever remember. The heat deserved to get to the finals but that’s because they didn’t play anybody tough to get there. The heat are also unique in that they play so small, so to beat them, it helps to have big guys that can score. The thunder beat all the teams in the west but their biggest weakness is that they have not one single big guy that can dominate the paint on the offensive end. It really played to the heat’s advantage not having to deal with the spurs, grizzlies, or even the lakers last year. plus, the thunder choked, both coaching and playing. Matchups are so important in the playoffs.

    Again, I think they deserve props, but all the cards were really in their favor last year.

  23. mcsuave - Feb 1, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    Heat won 4 tough series where their metal was tested and some expected them to fold. There was lots of haters against Lebron and the Heat fought through. Give them their props.

  24. omniusprime - Feb 2, 2013 at 8:56 AM

    Strike shortened season = Asterisk City! Of course Queen James won a title during a strike shortened season so it doesn’t mean as much as after a full regular season. Queen James won the woman’s title, that’s all.

    • jimeejohnson - Feb 4, 2013 at 8:38 PM

      Your posts should be prefaced with “warning: I’m a stupid a$$”!

  25. mazblast - Feb 3, 2013 at 11:25 PM

    I’m no fan of LeBron (respect the heck out of him, though) and loathe Wade and the Heat. That said, let’s get real. They won the title on the floor, without David Stern’s assistance (unlike the previous Heat title), after a fine if abbreviated regular season. It was a legitimate title, and if they don’t repeat this year, it does not make their win last season any less legitimate.

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