HA HA YOU SUCK -- The Story of the Miami Heat (1995-this morning)
New York City
Slow down, Crappy Carl. Calm down. Now...you say we lost Pat Riley, where did Pat Riley go?
"The buster ass Heat!" Carl cries.
It was one of the rare occasions when Carl wasn't lying. Needless to say I had to see for myself. It turns out that Riley wanted the General Manager's duties to go with the coach's. It sounded fair to me. Bill Parcells gets to do it. Bill Walsh got to do it. Scotty Bowman got to do it.
Pat Riley...wouldn't get to do it.
But the Miami Heat were more then willing to give him everything, and so that's where he went.
He ended up giving them all these players like Walt Williams, Dan Majerle, Tim Hardaway, Derek Anderson, but none of them were bigger then what he did on opening night on the eve of the regular season -- he traded three players including Glen Rice to the Hornets, for Alonzo Mourning.
Very brief detour to 1993
Alonzo became a big star very very quickly. He was drafted within the top three behind Shaq, and even though Shaq would dunk on his head and rap and break a basketball support in Phoenix on national television, Alonzo would take the Hornets to the playoffs. Him and Larry Johnson (tune in soon for my LJ hub), would play the Celtics in the first round in 93.
This was the year after Bird retired, and it was McHale's farewell year. Him, Parish, Dee Brown, Reggie Lewis and Dennis Johnson would play Muggsy Bogues, Larry Johnson, Alonzo, Dell Curry and Kendall Gill in round one. The Hornets go up 2-1 in Charlotte, and with less then second left in Game 4, Alonzo hits a GREAT jumper to put them up by 1. The place goes nuts and Alonzo hits the floor with his fists up in the air as everyone jumps on him.
Then with less then a second left, Celtics coach Chris Ford has Reggie Lewis throw the ball up in the air on an alley-oop --
HERE COMES DEE BROWN!!!!!
The Hornets stuff it, but it's questionable, McHale's crying for a foul, they don't get it, and the Hornets advance.
Okay, that was Good Alonzo.
Now here comes bad Alonzo...
At the end of the following season in 94, the Hornets have to win their final two games to clinch the last playoff spot. Alonzo gets thrown out of the first one, ejected, and then suspended for the second one.
This would become a common theme to Alonzo.
The Heat make the playoffs in Riley's first season and find themselves playing the 72-10 Chicago Bulls. They open the first two games in Chicago, and get stomped on.
Here's where it gets fun...
At halftime of Game 1 I believe, it was 62-38 Chicago, and Ron Harper ended up accidentally bumping into Tim Hardaway. Both men go "my bad" and smile and make sure the other one is okay and able to proceed along their way. Alonzo Mourning sees this, takes his towel, and throws it right into Harper's face.
Eleven guys on the Bulls went and rushed the both of them, pulling Harper away as fast as they shrieked at Alonzo.
See? Alonzo was about to get himself thrown out of a SECOND big series of games!
Alonzo has his best season ever, and the Heat end up playing my Knicks in Round 2. New York wins the first game in Miami, the third and fourth games in New York, and then they go into Miami.
With the game pretty much in Miami's favor, and several of the Knicks starters on the bench, Charlie Ward tries to battle P.J. Brown for position on a rebound after a free throw. P.J. Brown HEAVES him into the seats.
A fight ensues, one in which the Knicks starters did NOTHING WRONG!!!! All they did was abide by the rule and stay on the sideline to get a better view.
They put their toes out ever so slightly on the court while trying to get a good view.
There were literally seven players on the Knicks dressed for Game 6.
And in Game 7, Tim Hardaway couldn't be stopped. He was a bad ass, and so it would be Bulls vs. Heat again.
Once again, the Bulls kicked the shit out of them. The Bulls went up 3-0 in Miami on Saturday afternoon with Harper all over Alonzo. At least four steals and four breakaway layups for Harper, 27 points...
But Alonzo would guarantee that the Heat would win Game 4 on Monday.
To which Dennis Rodman responded when asked -- "Fine Alonzo. Do it. Win on Monday."
Alonzo did manage to elbow Pippen in the head and give him the infamous "bump".
Unfortunately, Alonzo's wish didn't come true of being ejected from an unbelievable FOURTH SERIES!!!!!!!
So the Bulls won, and the Heat would then go and blow a 2-1 lead in the first round of the 98 series against New York, highlights not only by the Mourning fight and ejection, but the sight of our new man Jeff Van Gundy holding onto to Alonzo's leg the whole time and being flung around as Alonzo kicked.
Then in 99, The Heat were the number one seed and had the Knicks in round one. Game 5, two seconds left, the Knicks down one, Houston gets the ball and gets Majerle leaping, ducks under his arm, puts IT IN!!! YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! OHHHHHH YEEAAHAHHHH WE WIN IT!!!!!!!!!! YEEEEEAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! YEEEEEAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
Knicks fans were going nuts.
Miami was silent and pissed.
Thunder Dan I don't think played again after that.
Then in 2000, Miami again had the Knicks for the fourth straight time. But in Game 7, Alonzo gave the ball to Jamal Mashburn in the final seconds to take the shot and blew it. Mourning wanted to take the shot really bad but the Knicks converged. It seemed like a smart decision, but Mourning's a tool...NOT a pussy.
In 2001, the Heat were the third seed and lost to Atlanta with Glenn Robinson.
In 2002, the Heat began a slow decline to the bottom do the startling news that Alonzo Mourning had a generative kidney disorder.
For the next several years, he would just get smaller and smaller.
In 2003, Miami was at the bottom. But then they drafted Marquette Final Four-ist Dwayne Wade who would turn out to be one of the best players of all time.
In 2004, following their debacle with the Pistons and Kobe's legal troubles, the Heat sent Lamar Odom, Caron Butler and Brian Grant to the Lakers in exchange for Shaq.
That season, they were the first seed and everything was great, and they got to the Eastern Conference Finals so Shaq could play the Pistons again.
They beat Miami in one of the best seven-game serieses I've ever seen. With about 6 seconds left, Miami with the ball, and Detroit up by 2, the Pistons steal the ball back and the most exuberant, excited smile you've ever seen grows on Detroit coach Larry Brown's face.
Stan Van Gundy, the coach would get chastised over and over again by Shaq. Pat Riley pulled rank as general manager and became the coach.
In 2006, with Riley coaching, the Heat got all the way to Finals with Shaq, Mourning, Antoine Walker, Dwayne Wade and Gary Payton.
In the first two games, Jason Terry cleaned Gary Payton's clock.
Then in Game 3 in Miami, Dallas went up by 10 in the third quarter.
From that point on, Dallas didn't score another point in the series.
And the Miami Heat were finally the CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD.
Pat Riley and Shaq together for the first time equals title.
Probably no team in history had more people happy for them then the 2006 Miami Heat.
In 2007, the Heat were the number one seed again, but were swept four straight by the CHICAGO BULLS OF KIRK HEINRICH AND BEN GORDON?!
In 2008, they were crappy, and Shaq and Wade ended up getting into it. Wade was becoming a serious asshole.
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