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LeBron James Will Win Another Title With Miami Heat, But Never Challenge Jordan

Updated on May 17, 2013
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The MVP did his job when it mattered against a hobbled Chicago Bulls team. That's what he gets paid for. However, after looking at how his rival made things so difficult even at the end raised serious questions not about if he'll win the championship this year, but about if he has any hope of challenging Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant on the trophies list.

There are a number of factors already going against him. First and foremost, this Bulls team is in no danger of going away. They have a terrific coach in Tom Thibodeau, Derrick Rose returns next season as does the other players hobbled. Toss in some excellent prospects to improve in 2014 and they figure to challenge in the East for years. Yet the real sign that Chicago is a threat is the surprising rise of Jimmy Butler. Not only did he prove he can defend James as well as anybody in the league, the improvement in his offensive game caught a lot of people by surprise and figures to become an x-factor when Rose returns. If they choose to start drafting more offensive firepower coupled with that Thibodeau defense, the King will have a very hard time keeping his throne.

Another sign that the Heat aren't long for their reign is Dwyane Wade. Their longtime star has played a big role again in the 2013 playoff push but anyone with eyes can see the signs. Wade is the oldest member of the Big Three at age 31. That isn't "old man" in basketball terms but when coupled with a troublesome knee it raises questions about how much longer he can go. By comparison, Scottie Pippen was 27 (and healthy) when he and Jordan made their run at a second title back in 1992. Is it realistic to think Wade can hold up through at least four more deep postseason runs?

One must also take into account how easy James has had it during the last two postseasons. A year ago he nearly coughed up another series to the old and worn out Boston Celtics before rallying. During that time Rose tore his ACL, eliminating another threat, leaving them to deal with two solid but inferior teams in the New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers. Either of those teams will face Miami in the Eastern Conference Finals against a Heat team that is arguably better than last year. Throw in the fact their potential opponents could be an equally old San Antonio Spurs team, highly inexperienced Golden State Warriors or defense-driven Memphis Grizzlies and it seems Miami continues a rare run of good fortune. These aren't Patrick Ewing Knicks or Reggie Miller Pacers they will face like Jordan did. Kevin Durant and Oklahoma City are out too. The simple fact is James hasn't really been tested by teams considered championship worthy yet still finds ways to look vulnerable.

LeBron should win the title this year. He has the best team, the healthiest team and the experience to know how. That doesn't mean people should pencil him in for the five or six rings Kobe and Michael collected just yet.

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    • prospectboy profile image

      Bradrick H. 

      5 years ago from Texas

      I don't disagree that he doesn't have the legs that he used to. That's normal since he is nearing his 40's. However, whenever they did give him the ball inside, he was effective. He pretty much owned both Chris Bosh and Chris Andersen. Miami doesn't have any real big men, which is why Tim was the only one out of the Spurs big three to be effective for the bulk of the series. He really only had one bad game the entire finals. He even had one game where he scored 25 before halftime. Miami survived because of missed free throws, turnovers, and mental mistakes. The Heat were made to order for the Spurs if they played the right game. They beat themselves.

    • EJ Lambert profile imageAUTHOR

      EJ Lambert 

      5 years ago from Chicago, IL

      I think they didn't go inside as much because they couldn't. Duncan just doesn't have the legs he used to. You can see it in his ability to elevate on shots. He's easier to defense now than in his prime. That was why the Heat were able to survive.

    • prospectboy profile image

      Bradrick H. 

      5 years ago from Texas

      They were considerably older, but I don't think that's why they lost the series. I consider Miami overrated honestly. If the Spurs would have limited their turnovers cut down on the mental mistakes and played inside more, I'm confident that they would have won. They made the series harder than it should have been.

    • EJ Lambert profile imageAUTHOR

      EJ Lambert 

      5 years ago from Chicago, IL

      The Spurs were also considerably older. They should've won that series but Ray Allen gave LBJ a reprieve. The Heat have looked nowhere near as dominant as those Bulls teams were. Never mind the fact they've played inferior competition the past couple seasons.

    • prospectboy profile image

      Bradrick H. 

      5 years ago from Texas

      He got his little ring, but he will never be anywhere near Michael Jordan in my opinion. I still think the Spurs were an overall better team than Miami, they just made too many mental mistakes in the games they lost. That game six loss took a lot out of them. I won't say that LeBron James isn't a talented player. I never had a problem with him when he was in Cleveland. However, I just didn't like the way he handled leaving the Cavaliers, and the arrogance he, along with Dwayne Wade have displayed. It's amazing to me that people are saying he is the greatest to ever play, when he has yet to reach Michael Jordan, or even Kobe Bryant's success as far as championships go. He's talented, but still has a lot to prove in my opinion. Well done!

    • EJ Lambert profile imageAUTHOR

      EJ Lambert 

      5 years ago from Chicago, IL

      He is a gamer, but I wonder how much longer he can last on those knees.

    • toptendeals profile image

      Jason Benedict 

      5 years ago from Boca Raton, Florida

      He looked a little bit shaky against the spurs, but you called it! I'm also a Miami Heat fan being in the area. Wade impresses me just as much as Lebron because of his defense. In one of the series against the spurs Wade had six steals and a blocked shot. Incredible.

    • EJ Lambert profile imageAUTHOR

      EJ Lambert 

      5 years ago from Chicago, IL

      It comes down to who that player is. Michael was a one-man highlight reel who learned how to become a leader and team player. LeBron is a ridiculously gifted athlete who prefers to facilitate rather than score. They just aren't the same. It's like comparing Pete Rose to Hank Aaron. Both great players, but both totally different in how they impact the game.

    • dontaytte profile image

      dontaytte 

      5 years ago from Palos Hills

      To my there are no comparisons. I believe that ranking NBA players is difficult and players should only be ranked by position. Lebron is one of the best small forwards that I have ever seen play, which is hard to say since I am a Bulls fan. It will be hard for another shooting guard to come close to Jordan give his defense, tricks shoots, highlight dunks on seven footers, and of course titles. Because Lebron and Michael play different positions there are stats that are hard to compare the two. Lebron plays power forward for the Heat because he is the only one who can get rebounds.

    • EJ Lambert profile imageAUTHOR

      EJ Lambert 

      5 years ago from Chicago, IL

      I can't argue with that!

    • profile image

      lesliebyars 

      5 years ago

      It does not matter how many titles Lebron wins their will always be only one Jordan. Air Jordan is the best b ball player in history. Bar none, in my opinion.

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