Reading LeBron’s Tea Leaves: The 13 Games That Will Reveal Miami’s Future

December 9th, 2010 by Dan Meadows Leave a reply »
Two weeks ago, the Miami Heat were 9-8, losers of four out of five games, feuding with their coach and generally crumbling. One six-game winning streak later, and LeBron, Wade, Bosh and company are back in business. Or so it seems.

Admittedly, their win in Utah last night was impressive, perhaps their biggest win of the season. No one ever said that Miami wasn’t talented, nor that they weren’t capable of beating good teams on the road, just that they aren’t close the championship caliber.

The five games prior to Utah weren’t exactly mountains to climb. Washington, Detroit, Cleveland and Milwaukee are winning games at a less-than-prodigious .322 clip this season, and the one winning team they did beat, Atlanta, was playing without their best player, Joe Johnson.

Don’t expect this train to stop rolling now, either. In their next six games, Miami has only two real challenges: a free-falling New Orleans team and a suddenly scrappy Knicks club. Again, not exactly upper echelon opponents.

Their four remaining games in that stretch are with Golden State, Sacramento, Cleveland and Washington, combined a rather pu ...

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