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With streak over, Heat can turn focus to bigger goal

Mar 28, 2013, 4:46 PM EDT

Erik Spoelstra, Chris Bosh, LeBron James, Mike Miller AP

It’s not a good thing for the Heat that the streak is over. That streak helped keep them focused through the dog days of the season and that will help them in the playoffs. Plus, setting a new record could have been a special part of their legacy when we look back on this team in a decade. You could tell how bad LeBron wanted that with how he played at the end of Wednesday’s loss — he showed a kind of passion we don’t often associate with LeBron.

But the end of the streak isn’t the worst thing, either.

While the streak is and will be part of the Heat’s legacy from this season and this era, it will be hollow without a ring at the end of it. The 1972 Lakers got their ring that season, the 72-win Chicago Bulls got their ring that season — regular season accomplishments become diminished in the public eye without a title to back them up.

Go ask the 2007 New England Patriots about it.

So the timing for the Heat isn’t all bad. First, as Gregg Popovich has said, teams tend to swoon a little after the end of a streak — it’s a natural response. Those ’72 Lakers lost four of six starting with the end of their streak. Better for the Heat to get that out of the way now.

And better to get some players some time off to rest and recover — all those close calls during the streak meant not only was the team’s core playing every game (almost) they were playing big, important minutes through the end of the game. There was no break.

Dwyane Wade clearly could use a little more time off. He looked a step or two slow against the Bulls. Chris Bosh has played in 68 games, Ray Allen and his old bones 69, and even LeBron is at 71. Granted, LeBron wants no part of a night off, but Spoelstra could force one or two on him, just to help rest all the bumps and bruises from the hard fouls LeBron has to suffer through.

Then there’s what to do about having the best overall record in the NBA. Although I don’t think that should be a big priority. In theory the Heat are in a battle for the best overall record — they are two games up on the Spurs for that as of Thursday — but in the finals the NBA switches to the 2-3-2 format of games and with three games in a row for the lower seed the home court advantage is somewhat nullified. It helps if you get to a Game 7, but it matters less in the finals than the earlier rounds, and the Heat have the top seed in the East locked up.

So the Heat need to move on, starting Friday in New Orleans. Get guys a little rest, work on a few bad habits they picked up during the streak, and focus on what really matters. Because for the Heat and their legacy, for LeBron’s legacy, it’s all about rings now.

  1. jtchernak - Mar 28, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    Title should read: With heat streak over, lets think of ways to hype them up again

    • reesesteel23 - Mar 28, 2013 at 5:03 PM

      You’re helping by commenting in the 1st place…but you dont realize that do you?

  2. ravensallday2012 - Mar 28, 2013 at 5:09 PM

    Noone can beat them in a series. Just give them there rings now

    • andyhr17 - Mar 28, 2013 at 10:40 PM

      No one was going to beat them when the trio came together originally, too…..yet they lost in the finals. Thank you for your insight, illiterate Heat fan.

  3. bengzki - Mar 28, 2013 at 5:34 PM

    27 winning streak is basically 27 wins in which is a better record already amongst 10 other teams in this league at this moment. As a fan of basketball itself, I’m just happy to witness it specially those comeback wins of the Heat during this run. As what one of the players of the 72 Lakers team said, its a good thing they lost the streak early before the playoffs because it gave them time to accept the fact that its over and its now time to set their sights for the playoffs and championship run.

    Learn to appreciate rather than hate, as hate is only developed by the people who thinks it good to see others failed.

  4. davidly - Mar 28, 2013 at 5:46 PM

    I agree, Kurt. They should send Wade, Bosh, LBJ, and Allen off for the San Antonio game. See how stern Stern is then.

  5. 1972wasalongtimeago - Mar 28, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    Four comments in on a Heat article and nothing from the usual trolls.

    • cantonbound13 - Mar 28, 2013 at 6:09 PM

      The more impressive fact is after a loss you don’t hear a word from the arrogant bandwagoners like move back, Pantsfree, Jimmy Marlin. When the Heat win a game they’re the first ones on here beating their little chests. COWARDS!!!!

  6. cantonbound13 - Mar 28, 2013 at 6:05 PM

    Prepare for more whining & flopping

  7. mvpolamalu - Mar 28, 2013 at 6:22 PM

    I dont get why people dont like talking about the heat. Face it, theyre the hot topic (no pun intended). What do you guys want, articles like “what can monta ellis and the 8th seed bucks do to move up to number 7?”

  8. rodge1 - Mar 28, 2013 at 7:15 PM

    There’s nothing like trolls waiting for every Heat article to spew garbage in the comment section. Just goes to show how scared they are of the Heat beating their respective teams in the playoffs… Unless I’m wrong and these trolls comment on every Bobcats’ article too.

    • andyhr17 - Mar 28, 2013 at 10:41 PM

      Pot, meet kettle.

  9. asublimeday - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:22 AM

    There’s nothing like trolls waiting for every Heat article to spew garbage in the comment section. Just goes to show how scared they are of the Heat beating their respective teams in the playoffs… Unless I’m wrong and these trolls comment on every Bobcats’ article too.
    ——

    1) keep telling yourself that

    And

    2) what bobcats articles?

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