Heat 95, Mavericks 92

Not a bad time for Miami to win its first game in Dallas in 4 years. Admittedly, that’s only a 6 game losing streak, but if Pat Riley has to manufacture motivation, this is far preferable to cranking the Doobie Brothers. While Shaq’s claim that Dwyane Wade (36 points) is “the best ever” is just so much silly hype, full credit to the big fella for using such a great shared achievement as another opportunity to slight Kobe Bryant.

The Miami Herald’s Greg Cote asks, “How do you place this Heat championship in the context of the Dolphins’ two Super Bowl wins, UM’s five national titles in football, and the Marlins’ two World Series wins?”

Though I’m not a Miami resident, I would guess this title will resonate with more people than the Marlins’ wins, but perhaps not as many as the Dolphins’ championships. I guess the Too Live Crew winning the Pazz & Jop poll doesn’t count. Calling the Heat, “a mixture of vindication, validation and abomination,” CBS Sportsline’s Greg Doyel damns Miami with faint praise.

Crazy Jason Williams has a ring. Crazy Jason Williams, who was once famously benched for being too erratic, is the starting point guard for an NBA champion. Unbelievable.

Selfish Antoine Walker has a ring. Selfish Antoine Walker, who was booed out of Boston, is a starting forward for an NBA champion. Unbelievable.

Moody Gary Payton has a ring. Moody Gary Payton, who was once suspended for being a jerk, is getting vital fourth-quarter minutes for an NBA champion. Unbelievable.

The Heat aren’t the best NBA champions in years. Name a past NBA champion the Heat would beat. Tim Duncan’s Spurs? Shaquille O’Neal’s Lakers? Michael Jordan’s Bulls? This Heat team wouldn’t have beaten any of them. Forget Miami’s place in history in terms of ability. In those terms Miami doesn’t have a place in NBA history, unless it’s as the worst NBA champion in years.