Miami Heat

The Miami Heat are an American professional basketball team based in Miami.[7] The Heat compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA), as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Southeast Division. The Heat play their home games at American Airlines Arena, and have won three NBA championships.

The franchise began play in 1988 as an expansion team, where after a period of mediocrity, the Heat would gain relevance during the 1990s following the appointment of former head coach Pat Riley in the role of team president. Riley would construct the high-profile trades of Alonzo Mourning in 1995, and of Tim Hardaway in 1996, which immediately propelled the team into playoff contention. Mourning and Hardaway would eventually lead the Heat to four division titles, prior to their departures in 2001 and 2002, respectively. As a result, the team struggled, and entered into a rebuild in time for the 2002–03 season.

Led by Dwyane Wade, and following a trade for former NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) Shaquille O'Neal, Miami made the NBA Finals in 2006, where they clinched their first championship, led by Riley as head coach. After the departure of O'Neal two years later, the team entered into another period of decline for the remainder of the 2000s. This saw the resignation of Riley as head coach, who returned to his position as team president, and was replaced by Erik Spoelstra.

In 2010, after creating significant cap space, the Heat partnered Wade with former league MVP LeBron James, and perennial NBA All-Star Chris Bosh, creating the "Big Three". During their four-year spell together, and under the guise of Spoelstra, James, Wade, and Bosh, they would lead the Heat to the NBA Finals in every season, and won two back-to-back championships in 2012 and 2013. The trio would all depart by 2016, and the team entered another period of rebuilding. Wade was eventually reacquired in 2018, albeit to retire with the franchise.[8]

The Heat hold the record for the NBA's third-longest streak, 27 straight games, set during the 2012–13 season. Four Hall of Famers have played for Miami, while James has won the NBA MVP Award while playing for the team.

Miami Heat
2018–19 Miami Heat season
Miami Heat logo
ConferenceEastern
DivisionSoutheast
Founded1988
HistoryMiami Heat
1988–present[1][2]
ArenaAmerican Airlines Arena
LocationMiami, Florida
Team colorsBlack, red, yellow[3][4]
              
Main sponsorUltimate Software[5]
PresidentPat Riley
General managerAndy Elisburg[6]
Head coachErik Spoelstra
OwnershipMicky Arison
Affiliation(s)Sioux Falls Skyforce
Championships3 (2006, 2012, 2013)
Conference titles5 (2006, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014)
Division titles13 (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2018)
Retired numbers5 (1, 10, 23, 32, 33)
Websitewww.nba.com/heat
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Association jersey
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Association
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Icon jersey
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Team colours
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Statement jersey
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Team colours
Statement
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City jersey
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City
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Franchise history

1987–2003: Early years in Miami

In 1987 the NBA granted one of its four new expansion teams to Miami (the others being the Orlando Magic, Charlotte Hornets, and the Minnesota Timberwolves) and the team, known as the Heat began play in November 1988. The Miami Heat began their early years with much mediocrity, only making the playoffs two times in their first eight years and falling in the first round both times.

1995–2003: Title hopefuls

Upon the purchasing of the franchise by Carnival Cruise Lines chairman Micky Arison in 1995, Pat Riley was brought in as the team president and head coach. Riley acquired center Alonzo Mourning and point guard Tim Hardaway to serve as the centerpieces for the team, transforming Miami into a championship contender throughout the late 1990s. With them they also brought in a new team trainer, Cody Posselt, to work on shooting. The Heat underwent a dramatic turnaround in the 1996–97 season, improving to a 61–21 record – a franchise record at the time, and currently second-best in team history. That same year, Miami earned the moniker of "Road Warriors" for its remarkable 32–9 record on the road. On the backs of Hardaway and Mourning, the Heat achieved their first two series victories in the playoffs, making it to the Conference Finals against the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls before losing in five games. Their biggest rivals of the time were the New York Knicks, Riley's former team, who would eliminate the Heat in the playoffs from 1998 through 2000. A period of mediocrity followed after, highlighted by missing the playoffs in 2002 and 2003.

2003–2016: The Dwyane Wade era

In the 2003 NBA draft, with the fifth overall pick, Miami selected shooting guard Dwyane Wade out of Marquette.[9] Free-agent swing-man Lamar Odom was signed from the Los Angeles Clippers. Just prior to the start of the 2003–04 season, Riley stepped down as head coach to focus on rebuilding the Heat, promoting Stan Van Gundy to the position of head coach. Behind Van Gundy's leadership, Wade's stellar rookie year and Odom's break out season, the Heat made the 2004 NBA Playoffs, beating the New Orleans Hornets 4–3 in the 1st round and losing to the Indiana Pacers 4–2 in the 2nd round. In the offseason, Riley engineered a summer blockbuster trade for Shaquille O'Neal from the Los Angeles Lakers.[10] Alonzo Mourning returned to the Heat in the same season, serving as a backup to O'Neal. Returning as championship contenders, Miami finished with a 59–23 record, consequently garnering the first overall seed in the Eastern Conference. Sweeping through the first round and the semifinals, Miami went back to the Conference Finals for the first time in eight years, where it met the defending champion Detroit Pistons. Despite taking a 3–2 lead, Miami lost Wade to injury for Game 6. The Heat would go on to lose Game 7 at home despite Wade's return.

2005–2006: Championship season

In the summer of 2005, Riley brought in veteran free agent Gary Payton from the Boston Celtics, and also brought in James Posey, Jason Williams and Antoine Walker via trades.[11] After a disappointing 11–10 start to the 2005–06 season, Riley relieved Van Gundy of his duties and took back the head coaching job. The Heat made it to the Conference Finals in 2006 and in a re-match, defeated the Pistons, winning the series 4–2. Making its first NBA Finals appearance, they played the Dallas Mavericks, who won the first two games in Dallas in routs. The Heat then won the next four games, capturing its first ever championship. Wade won the Finals MVP award.[12]

2006–2010: Post-championship struggles

The Heat experienced four-years of post-title struggles from 2007 through 2010, including a 4–0 sweep by the Chicago Bulls in the 1st round of the 2007 NBA Playoffs. In the 2007–08 season, Wade was plagued by injuries and the Heat had a league worst 15–67 record. O'Neal was traded to Phoenix midway through the season. Riley resigned as head coach following the season but retained his position as team president. Long time assistant Erik Spoelstra was promoted to head coach. A healthy Wade led the Heat to 43 wins in 2009 and 47 wins 2010, making the playoffs both seasons, though they lost in the first round, 4–3 in 2009 and 4–1 in 2010. Wade was the scoring champion in 2009 and the NBA All-Star MVP in 2010.

2010–2014: The "Big Three" era

Entering the 2010–2011 season with nearly $48 million in salary cap space, the Heat caused a major power shift during the blockbuster 2010 NBA Free Agency, adding Chris Bosh and LeBron James, starting the "Big 3" era. However, the Heat got off to a 9–8 start. After a "players only" meeting, the team improved. The Heat finished with a 58–24 record and the 2nd seed. In the much anticipated 2011 NBA Playoffs, Miami defeated the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round, Boston Celtics in the Conference Semifinals, and Bulls in the Conference Finals, all in 5 games. The Heat reached the 2011 NBA Finals for the first time since 2006, in a rematch against the Dallas Mavericks. After taking a 2–1 series lead, the Heat lost the final three games to the Mavericks. After the second NBA Lockout ended, the Heat signed veteran Shane Battier. In the shortened 2011–12 season, the Heat started 27–7. However they would struggle for the second half of the season, going 19–13. The Heat finished 46–20, earning the second seed in the East for the NBA Playoffs. Entering the first round, they took a 3–0 lead against the New York Knicks but like their previous series with the Sixers, were not able to close them out in Game 4. A victory in Game 5 ultimately defeated New York and the Heat advanced to the second round versus the Indiana Pacers. After losing Game 2 at home and Game 3 at Indiana, many criticized Dwyane Wade's lackluster performance in Game 3, bringing attention to the fact that he got into a verbal argument with Spoelstra. However, with Wade visiting his former college coach, the team defeated the Pacers in the next three games, to close out the Pacers. They met the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals, taking the first two games before losing the next three, including one home loss where Bosh returned from injury. On June 7 they won on the road at Boston beating the Celtics 98–79 to tie the series 3–3; James had 45 points and 15 rebounds. The deciding Game 7 was at Miami. The Celtics largely dominated during the first half. The second half saw several lead changes. The Heat eventually won 101–88, reaching the NBA Finals for the second straight year. In the much anticipated match-up with the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Heat split the first two games, winning Game 2 on the road, before sweeping the next three at home. James was named the Finals MVP as he won his first NBA championship.

On July 11, 2012, the Heat officially signed veterans Ray Allen to a three-year contract and Rashard Lewis to a two-year contract. The Heat would go on a 27-game winning streak between February 3, 2013 and March 27, 2013 [13] Defeating Orlando in the season finale set the franchise record for 66 wins in a season. By the end of the season, the Heat won 18 of its 19 road games, the best streak on the road to end a season in NBA history. The Heat went 17–1 in March, becoming the first team to win 17 games in a single calendar month. The Heat ended with a franchise-best and league-best 66–16 record to take the 1st seed in the 2013 NBA Playoffs. They swept the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round and defeated Chicago in five games before winning against the Indiana Pacers in Game 7. Miami became the first Eastern Conference team to reach the NBA Finals in three straight years since the Chicago Bulls in the late 1990s. Miami lost Game 1 of the Finals on their home floor in a close game that was decided by a last minute buzzer beater by Tony Parker. The Heat went on to win Game 2 with a 33–5 run in the second half. The two teams continued to trade wins leading up to Game 6 where the Spurs, up 10 heading in the 4th quarter, were in position to close out the series and win the championship. James went on to score 16 points in the period, outscoring the entire Spurs team by himself at one point. The Heat went on to defeat the Spurs 95–88 in Game 7 behind a 37-point and 12 rebound performance from James and a 23-point and 10 rebound effort from Wade. Shane Battier also scored 18 points behind 6–8 shooting from 3, after having a shooting slump during the postseason up to that point. The Heat captured the NBA title for a second year in a row, becoming the first team in the Eastern Conference to repeat as league champions since the late 1990s Chicago Bulls. James was named the NBA Finals MVP, becoming the fifth player to win the award back-to-back along with Michael Jordan, Bill Russell, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O'Neal, and Hakeem Olajuwon and only the second player in NBA history to win the Finals MVP and league MVP back-to-back along with Jordan. Miami struggled throughout the 2013–14 season with extended absences of Dwyane Wade, who only played 54 games to injury and ended on an 11–14 record entering the playoffs. They entered the playoffs as the Eastern Conference 2nd seed with a record of 54–28 team, and with the "Big 3" healthy. They went 12–3 in the first 3 rounds. They swept the Charlotte Bobcats. They then beat the Brooklyn Nets 4–1. They went on to play the 1st seeded 56–26 Pacers in the Conference Finals, in a rematch of the previous year's Conference Finals. The Pacers were eliminated from the playoffs for a third consecutive year by the Heat. The Heat went to a fourth consecutive Finals, and faced the Spurs again. The first two games in San Antonio were split but the Heat fell to the Spurs 4–1, failing to repeat as champions for the third consecutive season.

2014–2016: Post-"Big Three" era

On July 11, 2014, LeBron James announced on SI.com that after opting out of the final year of his contract, he would leave the Heat and return to the Cleveland Cavaliers.[14] Wade and Bosh stayed in Miami. Like the Cavaliers in the 2010 off-season, the Heat focused on how it would maintain itself without LeBron. Wade and Bosh were joined by returning players Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole, Udonis Haslem and Chris Andersen along with former rivals Luol Deng and Danny Granger. The Heat also drafted Shabazz Napier and James Ennis. In 2015 they also gained Goran Dragić and his younger brother Zoran Dragić.

After a season with several injuries, including to Chris Bosh and Josh McRoberts, the Heat finished with a 37–45 record, the NBA's 10th worst. They failed to make the playoffs after being Eastern Conference champions four straight years. It was the second time in Wade's career they did not qualify for the postseason. The Heat were the first team since the 2004–05 Los Angeles Lakers to miss the playoffs after going to the NBA Finals the previous year. Miami had qualified for the playoffs for six consecutive seasons.

At the 2015 NBA draft lottery, the Heat were awarded the 10th pick for the 2015 NBA draft, which was used to select Duke forward Justise Winslow.[15]

During the 2015–16 season, the Heat compiled a 48–34 regular season record; however, their season ended in the Conference Semifinals where they lost to the Toronto Raptors. The 2016 free agency was marked with relationship issues and disagreements between Dwyane Wade and Heat president Pat Riley, mostly focusing on how much Wade would get paid.[16][17]

2016–2019: Departure and return of Wade

On July 6, 2016, Wade announced that he was leaving the Heat to go join his hometown Chicago Bulls.[18]

In September 2016, Bosh suffered numerous setbacks and failed his physical exam with the Heat and was not cleared by the team to participate in training camp.[19][20] On September 26, 2016, Heat president Riley said that the team doubted about Bosh's return on the court and viewed his career with the team as over, and noted that the team was no longer working toward his return.[21] On July 4, 2017, the Heat waived Bosh[22] after the NBA's ruling on June 2, 2017, which declared that Bosh's blood clotting issues were a career-ending illness.[23] After waiving Bosh, team's president Riley announced that Bosh's number would be retired in the future out of respect to him and due to his accomplishments with the Heat.[22] On February 8, 2018, the Cleveland Cavaliers traded Dwyane Wade back to the Miami Heat.[24]

Uniforms

1988–1999 uniforms

Unveiled prior to the 1988–89 season, the original Miami Heat uniforms consist of simple striping, exclusive only on the right side of the jersey and shorts. The home uniforms were white with lettering in red, black and orange trim, while the away uniforms were black with red, white and orange trim; the numbers were white with red, black and orange trim, using the same font as the classic Los Angeles Lakers jerseys. The original 'flaming ball' logo is on the left leg of the shorts while the word 'Miami' is on the right leg.

In the 1995–96 season the Heat introduced a red alternate uniform with lettering and numbers in black, white and orange trim. The original set lasted until the 1998–99 season.

The original white and red uniforms were reintroduced as throwback uniforms during the Heat's 20th and 25th anniversary seasons, respectively, while the original black uniforms were used as throwbacks in the 2013–14 season. The classic white uniforms were used again for the 2015–16 season.

As part of Nike's uniform contract with the NBA, the so-called "Classic" edition was introduced and featured modernized throwback uniform designs from past years. During the 2017–18 season, the Heat were one of eight teams who participated in this line and wore their black 1988–99 uniforms, updated to the current Nike uniform cut.

1999–present uniforms

The current Heat uniforms have been in use since the 1999–2000 season. These uniforms, though similar, have marked differences such as striping on both sides, change from orange to yellow trim, updated lettering and block numbers, and a modified 'flaming ball' logo on the right leg. The black away uniform numbers are now consistent with the lettering colors (white with red trim).

The alternate red uniform was introduced during the 2001–02 season, and features the city name and numbers in white with black trim. With subtle changes like the "Miami" wordmark on the black uniforms and addition of the "MH" alternate logo on the shorts, these uniforms remain in use with the Heat today.

Following the switch to Nike as the uniform provider in the 2017–18 season, the Heat's current uniforms now fall under three categories. The white uniforms are part of the "Association" line, the black uniforms are on the "Icon" line and the red uniforms are assigned to the "Statement" line. All three uniforms are now used regardless of home or away games.

Special uniforms

Since the 2008 season, the Heat participated in the NBA's Noche Latina promotions, or Latin Nights. From 2008–14, the Heat wore a modified version of their black uniforms, featuring the wordmark "El Heat"; a sleeved version was used in 2014. For the 2015 season, the Heat wore their white uniforms with the "El Heat" wordmark, followed by the Noche Latina version of their red alternates in the 2016 season.

The Heat wore a variation of their current home uniforms on the opening night of the 2012–13 season, with gold accents and a patch of the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy on the right chest. They used another variation on opening night of the 2013–14 season, this time with gold lettering.

During the 2013–14 season, the Heat wore a variation of their current home uniforms, but with the player's names at the back replaced by their nicknames (e.g. 'King James' for LeBron James). They wore the uniforms for select home games that season.

From 2012–14, the Heat wore special monochrome uniforms: an all-black ensemble in the 2012 season, an all-white version in the 2013 season, and an all-red attire in the 2014 season. In 2015, a variation of their all-black uniforms, featuring drop shadows, centered numbers and heavy striping inspired from a tuxedo, was used, followed by a similarly-designed white uniform in the 2016–17 season.

The 2015–16 season saw the unveiling of two special uniforms. One featured a blend of modern and classic styles (Heat Legacy), while the other is a military-inspired uniform (Home Strong).

The Heat also participated in the Christmas Day games wearing special uniforms. In 2012, they wore monochrome red uniforms known as "Big Color." The following year, they wore their "Big Logo" sleeved uniforms, featuring a chrome-treated version of their "flaming ball" logo. In 2014, the Heat wore a variation of their home uniform, featuring their primary logo and centered numbers in front, and black nameplates with the player's first name below the number at the back.

The Heat have also honored the ABA's Miami Floridians by donning throwback uniforms; first the road jerseys in the 2005–06 season, then the home jerseys in the 2011–12 season.

In the 2017–18 season, the Heat wore special "City" uniforms (named as such by Nike to commemorate local cultures and team traditions) that paid homage to the hit 1980s TV series Miami Vice. The uniforms were white with pink, light blue and black trim and featured the "Miami" wordmark inspired from the logo of the Miami Arena. For the 2018–19 season, the Heat released black versions of the Miami Vice uniforms. In addition, a pink version of the uniform was unveiled as part of Nike's "Earned" series which were exclusive only to the 16 teams that qualified in the 2018 NBA Playoffs.

Rivalries

New York Knicks

The rivalry between the New York Knicks and the expansion Miami Heat was a result of their four consecutive playoff series from 1997 to 2000. Each series went seven games. The rivalry's central figure was Pat Riley, the head coach of both teams (the early 1990s for the Knicks and the late 1990s for the Heat). Jeff Van Gundy took over Riley's stint as head coach of the Knicks, while his elder brother Stan Van Gundy was simultaneously an assistant coach for the Heat. Patrick Ewing and Alonzo Mourning, friends from their Georgetown college basketball period. Larry Johnson, one of the Knicks, held bad blood with Mourning as far back as their days in the Charlotte Hornets.

Chicago Bulls

The rivalry with the Chicago Bulls began once the Miami Heat became contenders during the 1990s, a decade dominated by the Bulls and Michael Jordan. During that period, the Heat were eliminated three times by the Bulls, who would go on to win the NBA championship each time. After Jordan retired and the Heat's fall in the early 2000s, the rivalry cooled but slightly picked up when the Heat faced them in the first round of the 2006 NBA playoffs, which ended in a 4–2 Heat series victory and went on to win the NBA Finals, the Bulls would sweep the defending champion Heat in the first round the next season.

The rivalry has intensified with the resurgence of the Bulls, and the emergence of Derrick Rose and the Heat re-signing Dwyane Wade (who turned down a chance of joining his hometown Bulls) with newly acquired superstars in Chris Bosh and LeBron James (who spurned a chance of teaming up with Rose in Chicago). The revived rivalry has been very physical, involving rough plays and hard fouls between players. Both teams met in the 2011 Eastern Conference Finals, with the Heat winning in five games.

The Bulls ended the Heat's record-setting 27 game win streak on March 27, 2013, with a 101–97 victory at the United Center in Chicago.[25] Despite playing without Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Richard "Rip" Hamilton, and Marco Belinelli, the Bulls managed to end the second longest win streak in basketball history.[26]

The rivalry would continue into the 2013 NBA Playoffs when the Heat would play the Bulls in the second round. The Bulls ended another Miami Heat winning streak by beating the Heat 93–87 in game 1. The Heat came back in game 2 and set a record for the largest margin of victory in franchise playoff history with a 115–78 win. The Bulls also set a record for the worst playoff defeat in franchise history. The 51 personal fouls were the most in a playoff game since 1995. In Game 3, Nazr Mohammed was ejected for shoving LeBron James early in the second quarter. Norris Cole had his jersey ripped by Taj Gibson while driving to the basket for a layup. Joakim Noah was seen applauding and cheering on the image of Chris Bosh arguing with Mario Chalmers. Noah received a technical foul for shoving Chris Andersen after he fell on Nate Robinson. Chalmers received a flagrant foul for ringing his arm around Noah's neck. Taj Gibson and Noah were both ejected in the same game for yelling at the referees.

Orlando Magic

The Orlando Magic and the Miami Heat had a rivalry because both teams are located in Florida, thus the rivalry was known as the Sunshine State rivalry. Another ingredient to the rivalry was the high-caliber players on both teams such as Orlando's Shaquille O'Neal and Penny Hardaway to Miami's Alonzo Mourning and Tim Hardaway. The two had met each other in the NBA playoffs for the first time in 1997, with Miami beating Orlando 3–2, they have not met in the playoffs since.

The rivalry intensified with the rising stardom of Miami's and Orlando's Dwyane Wade and Dwight Howard, along with Miami's acquiring high-caliber stars such LeBron James from the Cleveland Cavaliers and Chris Bosh from the Toronto Raptors and in 2010, resulting in fierce competition between the two.

When Dwight Howard departed from the Magic to the Los Angeles Lakers in August 2012, the rivalry softened. The Orlando Magic are undergoing a process of rebuilding, however, competition still remains tense.

Boston Celtics

The two teams first squared off in the playoffs in 2010, with the Celtics defeating the Heat four games to one en route to an eventual NBA Finals appearance by the Celtics. Having suffered first round losses in three straight years, it was the loss to the Celtics that prompted Dwyane Wade to declare that the loss would be "my last" in the first round for the near future.

LeBron James' own enmity with the Boston Celtics can be found as far back as his first stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers, where the Celtics upset the Cavaliers in 2008 and 2010. Among the two Heat stars, Wade went as far as to say that he personally hates the Celtics, with James' own disdain for Boston manifesting in how he referred to the Celtics exclusively as "that team" in 2011. With the acquisition of both James and Chris Bosh in 2010, the Heat challenged the Celtics for dominance in the Eastern Conference; James claimed that the formation of the Heat's Big 3 was to mirror the formation of the Celtics' Big 3 in Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett. After dropping the first three games versus the Celtics in the regular season, Miami prevailed in their fourth encounter, taking the 2nd seed from the Celtics and gaining home court advantage for their eventual match-up of the postseason. The teams met in the Eastern Conference Semifinals of the 2011 NBA Playoffs, where Paul Pierce was ejected in Game 1, Dwyane Wade inadvertently broke Rajon Rondo's arm in Game 3 and James scored the final ten points in the deciding Game 5. James could be found roaring to the fans as the Celtics' end came, even kneeling to the ground in relief after finally defeating the Celtics. The rivalry would continue in the following season, where the Heat again took home court advantage over the Celtics, though Boston again won the season series over the Heat. Despite the loss of Bosh to injury in the Semifinals, the Heat took a 2–0 lead before the Celtics won the next three games; the first five games included two overtimes, Rondo's 44 point performance in Game 2, as well as Pierce and James fouling out in Game 4. James' 45 point performance in Game 6 at Boston forced a deciding seventh game, where the two teams traded blows deep into the third and fourth quarters, before Miami pulled away with a 4–3 victory en route to the NBA Finals.

In the offseason, the Celtics' Big 3 was broken up following Ray Allen's joining of the Heat. When asked about their immediate reactions to their teammate leaving for their rival, Kevin Garnett claimed that he deleted Allen's phone number, while Paul Pierce admitted that it "hurt", though he still considers Allen "a brother to me" for their 2008 championship run. Although the two teams would not meet in the playoffs, the animosity continued in their four regular season games. The season opener – a Heat victory – included Rondo clothes-lining Wade's neck, Garnett snubbing a handshake from Allen pre-game, and Garnett throwing an elbow at Mario Chalmers. During Miami's 2013 Streak, Paul Pierce went on record to say that he wished for Miami to lose all of its remaining games by that point. When James voiced his displeasure over the Chicago Bulls' physicality against him, Boston's general manager Danny Ainge called it "embarrassing" for LeBron to complain about it. Pat Riley, the Heat team president, retorted that "Danny should shut the fuck up." The teams met during the Streak, where it was five years to the day that the Celtics' stopped the Houston Rockets' own 20+-game winning streak. It ended in a Heat victory, one that featured James dunking on Jason Terry; he received a technical foul for staring down at Terry post-dunk. When asked about it after the game by reporters, James stated that he was "glad it happened to him."

Indiana Pacers

A recent rivalry was triggered with the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference Semifinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs. Although the two previously met in the 2004 NBA Playoffs (when Indiana won 4–2), as of 2014, the only two players still left from either team are Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem of the Heat. Both head coaches were fined for statements made relating to the officiating: Frank Vogel accused the Heat of flopping before the series started, while Erik Spoelstra took offense to what he perceived to be deliberate head-hunting of his players on the part of the Pacers. Indiana took a 2–1 lead after Miami's Chris Bosh was sidelined with an abdominal strain. Powered by LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, Miami won three straight games to take the series, 4–2. The series was marked by several suspensions, flagrant fouls, and confrontations between the players: Tyler Hansbrough's flagrant foul on Dwyane Wade (which drew blood), Udonis Haslem's retaliatory flagrant foul on Hansborough (which led to Haslem's Game 6 suspension), Wade colliding with Darren Collison in transition, Juwan Howard confronting Lance Stephenson over the latter's flashing of the choke sign to James, and Dexter Pittman elbowing Stephenson in the neck (which led to his own three-game suspension). Indiana's Danny Granger received technical fouls in three consecutive games for his confrontations with Heat players; he stripped James of his headband in Game 2 while attempting to block a shot, pulled the back of James' jersey in Game 3 while trying to stop a fast-break, and chest-bumped Wade in Game 4 after the latter was fouled by Roy Hibbert.

The following season saw improvements for both teams, from Miami's acquisition of Ray Allen and Chris Andersen, to the emergence of Paul George and Lance Stephenson. Notably, it was after the Heat lost to the Pacers that they compiled a 27-game winning streak; the last time the Heat lost two in a row in the year were the games against Indiana and Portland. During the waning minutes of Game 6 in the Semifinals between the Pacers and the New York Knicks, the Pacers' fans were chanting "Beat The Heat" as their team beat their old New York rivals. True to form, the Heat and the Pacers met in the Conference Finals of the 2013 NBA Playoffs on May 22, 2013. Several instances of physicality became prominent in the series: Shane Battier received an offensive foul for throwing his knee at Hibbert's midsection; Hibbert claimed that it was intentional dirty play on the part of Battier. Andersen suffered a bloodied nose after colliding with David West. Ian Mahinmi received a retroactive flagrant foul for a grab of James' arm. Norris Cole latched a hand on West's groin area as he tried to slip through West. Wade received a retroactive flagrant foul for hitting Stephenson in the head, another incident that the Pacers, notably Paul George, felt was a dirty play. The Heat survived Game 1 on a James game-winning layup, while the Pacers came back to tie the series at 1–1 after forcing James into two late fourth-quarter turnovers for Game 2. In Game 3, the Heat set a team record for points in a postseason half with 70. It was the first time the Pacers had given up 70 points since 1992. Allen's single turnover was the least ever suffered by the Heat in a first half. Their five total turnovers is tied for the fewest in franchise history. The Game 3 victory marked the first time that an NBA team had won five straight road games by double digits. The Heat won the series 4–3, with a 99–76 win in game 7.[27] In the 2014 NBA Playoffs, after beating the Brooklyn Nets in five games, and the Pacers beating the Washington Wizards in six games, the Heat and the first-seeded Pacers would meet up in the Eastern Conference Finals in a much-anticipated rematch. The Heat would go on to eliminate the Pacers 4–2 games, advancing to their fourth consecutive NBA Finals in the Big Three-era. The Heat stumbled during Game 1 in Indianapolis, falling 96–107. They would win Games 2–4. During Game 5 (which Miami lost 90–93), James struggled, suffering heavy foul trouble and scoring only 7 points, his lowest playoff record. During Game 6 in Miami, the Heat would blow out the Pacers 117–92.

Dallas Mavericks

The Heat–Mavericks rivalry began in the 2006 NBA Finals, where the two teams met and both entering their first NBA Finals appearance. A year prior, the Heat had acquired Shaquille O'Neal. The Mavericks were led by Dirk Nowitzki, and the Heat were led by Dwyane Wade. Dallas had home-court advantage in the series due to a better regular season record (60-22) than Miami's (52–30) and took the first two games in the series, entering Game 3 with a commanding 2–0 lead. They looked set to win Game 3 until a rally by the Heat, including many free throws from Wade, resulted in the Mavericks losing the third game. The Heat won all of its home games, as the Mavericks dropped games 3, 4 and 5. In a highly controversial Game 5, a 101–100 victory for the Heat, Wade shot more free throws than the entire Mavericks team. Mavericks owner Mark Cuban as well as Nowitzki were both fined for acts of misconduct. During Game 6, the series returned to Dallas, where the Mavericks fell 92–95. Jason Terry airballed a three-point attempt that could have tied the game. Wade picked up the ball, throwing it in the air in celebration as the Heat won the NBA Championship, and its first one as well. Wade was named the Finals MVP.

In the 2010 off-season, Miami acquired LeBron James from the Cleveland Cavaliers and Chris Bosh from the Toronto Raptors to team up with Wade and form their own "big three" (to rival the Celtics' big three) that was expected to win the championship. The Heat finished 58–24, acquiring the southeast division title and the second seed in the Eastern Conference. During the regular season, the Mavericks swept the Heat 2–0. The Heat cruised through the Playoffs without much competition, eliminating every team – the Philadelphia 76ers, defending Eastern Conference champions Boston Celtics and the top-seeded Chicago Bulls all five games. Meanwhile, the Mavericks had tallied 57–25 for the third seed, leaving them to face the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round. The Mavericks had been defeated in the first round all but one time since the 2006 finals, including a defeat from the seventh-seeded San Antonio Spurs just the previous season. Because of this, the Mavericks were underdogs throughout the playoffs, but they were able to dispatch Portland in six games. They faced the defending NBA champions Los Angeles Lakers and pulled off the impossible by sweeping them, ending their bid for a three-peat. In the conference finals, they defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder, resulting a rematch between the two teams. After taking a 2–1 lead however, the Heat stumbled in the next three games. They were eliminated on their own home floor after losing 95–105 during Game 6 in Miami – extending LeBron's quest for a ring. The loss had also brought further public humiliation for LeBron James, who had been scrutinized and negatively criticized for leaving the Cavaliers to join the Heat. LeBron was criticized for only averaging 17.8 points. Cavaliers fans rejoiced in the Heat's loss due the anger that was caused by LeBron's decision to join the Heat, which they felt was unfair and a betrayal.

After that, the Mavericks would never win another game against the Heat. Dallas hosted the Heat for the season opener on December 25, 2011 of the 2011–2012 NBA lockout season that was shortened to 66 games. The Heat spoiled the Mavericks' championship banner-raising night, giving them a 105–94 blowout loss.

Although the Heat and the Mavericks have not met in the postseason ever since, the rivalry continued as Mark Cuban publicly discussed his extreme personal dislike for the Heat. He described "hate" was not being strong-enough of a word to describe his dislike for the Heat.[28] He also had a personal dislike for Wade.

Home arenas

Duration Arena
November 5, 1988December 28, 1999 Miami Arena
January 2, 2000–present American Airlines Arena

Radio and television

The Heat's flagship radio stations are WAXY (790 AM) in English,[29] with Mike Inglis and John Crotty calling games, and WQBA (1140 AM) in Spanish, with Jose Pañeda and Joe Pujala on the call.

The Heat games are televised primarily by Fox Sports Sun with Eric Reid and Tony Fiorentino. Reid has been part of the Heat's broadcasting team since the beginning of the franchise, first serving as a color analyst, and later becoming the lead play-by-play voice starting in the 1991–92 season. For the first four years of the franchise, there were radio-television simulcasts of locally-broadcast games before the franchise eventually created separate broadcast teams.

WBFS-TV (channel 33) was the original over-the-air flagship station for Heat games, with its first stint concluding at the end of the 1998–99 season, after 11 seasons. WAMI-TV (channel 69) took over the following season; however, WBFS (along with now-sister station WFOR channel 4) returned as the Heat's primary over-the-air home in 2000–01, this time lasting until the 2003–04 season. On the cable side, Heat games were televised on then-SportsChannel Florida (now Fox Sports Florida), before moving to then-Sunshine Network (now Sun Sports) starting in the 1992–93 season. Since 2004–05, Sun Sports have served as the exclusive regional carrier of Heat games throughout the team's designated broadcast territory, which includes the metropolitan areas of Miami–Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach–Fort Pierce–Port St. Lucie, and Fort Myers–Naples.

On a national scale, games are occasionally televised by TNT, ESPN, or ABC.

From 1988–1993, the Heat were on WQAM. WINZ previously aired games from 1993–1996 and WIOD did from 1996–2008.

Players

Current roster

Miami Heat roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Height Weight DOB (YYYY-MM-DD) From
F/C 13 Adebayo, Bam 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 255 lb (116 kg) 1997–07–18 Kentucky
F 31 Anderson, Ryan 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 240 lb (109 kg) 1988–05–06 California
F 25 Cooke, Charles 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1994–07–01 Dayton
G 7 Dragić, Goran 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1986–05–06 Slovenia
F 40 Haslem, Udonis 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 235 lb (107 kg) 1980–06–09 Florida
F 16 Johnson, James 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 240 lb (109 kg) 1987–02–20 Wake Forest
G/F 5 Jones, Derrick 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1997–02–15 UNLV
F 00 Maten, Yante 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 240 lb (109 kg) 1996–08–14 Georgia
G Nunn, Kendrick 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 184 lb (83 kg) 1995–08–03 Oakland
F 9 Olynyk, Kelly 7 ft 0 in (2.13 m) 240 lb (109 kg) 1991–04–19 Gonzaga
G/F 0 Richardson, Josh 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1993–09–15 Tennessee
F 55 Robinson, Duncan 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1994–04–22 Michigan
G 11 Waiters, Dion 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1991–12–10 Syracuse
C 21 Whiteside, Hassan 7 ft 0 in (2.13 m) 265 lb (120 kg) 1989–06–13 Marshall
F 20 Winslow, Justise 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 225 lb (102 kg) 1996–03–26 Duke
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  • (GL) On assignment to G League affiliate
  • (TW) Two-way affiliate player
  • Injured Injured

Roster
Last transaction: 2019–04–10

Retained draft rights

The Heat hold the draft rights to the following unsigned draft picks who have been playing outside the NBA. A drafted player, either an international draftee or a college draftee who is not signed by the team that drafted him, is allowed to sign with any non-NBA teams. In this case, the team retains the player's draft rights in the NBA until one year after the player's contract with the non-NBA team ends.[30] This list includes draft rights that were acquired from trades with other teams.

Draft Round Pick Player Pos. Nationality Current team Note(s) Ref

Basketball Hall of Famers

Miami Heat Hall of Famers
Players
No. Name Position Tenure Inducted
20 Gary Payton G 2005–2007 2013
33 Alonzo Mourning C/F 1995–2002
2005–2008
2014
32 Shaquille O'Neal C 2004–2008 2016
34 Ray Allen G 2012–2014 2018
Coaches
Name Position Tenure Inducted
Pat Riley Head coach 1995–2003
2005–2008
2008

FIBA Hall of Famers

Miami Heat Hall of Famers
Players
No. Name Position Tenure Inducted
32 Shaquille O'Neal C 2004–2008 2017
33 Alonzo Mourning C/F 1995–2002
2005–2008
2019

Retired numbers

The Heat have retired five numbers, although only four of the players played for the franchise. Michael Jordan was the first player to be honored despite not having played for the Heat. Pat Riley retired Jordan's signature No. 23 before his final game in Miami during the 2002–03 season as a tribute to his career.[31]

During the 2005–06 season the organization honored Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino's No. 13 in respect of his contributions to the National Football League (NFL)'s Miami Dolphins.[32] However, the No. 13 jersey is not retired and is still available for use by the Heat players.

Miami Heat retired numbers
No. Player Position Tenure Date
1 Chris Bosh F 2010–2017 March 26, 2019[33][34]
10 Tim Hardaway G 1996–2001 October 28, 2009[35][36]
23 Michael Jordan G April 12, 2003[31]
32 Shaquille O'Neal C 2004–2008 December 22, 2016[37]
33 Alonzo Mourning C 1995–2002
2005–2008
March 30, 2009[38]

Head coaches

There have been six head coaches for the Miami Heat. Ron Rothstein was the franchise's first head coach, serving from 1988 through 1991; he remains as assistant coach. Kevin Loughery was his successor from 1991 to 1995, guiding the Heat to their first two playoff berths in 1992 and 1994. Loughery was fired 46 games into the 1994–1995 season, posting a 17–29 record. Alvin Gentry, an assistant coach who joined in 1991, was brought in to replace Loughery on an interim basis. Miami went 15–21 for the final 36 games, and Gentry moved to the Detroit Pistons the following season.

In the summer of 1995, owner Micky Arison hired Pat Riley as the head coach and team president. At eleven years, Riley is the longest tenured head coach in the franchise's history, as well its all-time leader in total wins and games coached. Upon suffering a 25–57 record in the 2002–2003 season, Riley abruptly announced his retirement, but remained as team president. He elevated assistant coach Stan Van Gundy as his replacement. Van Gundy is Miami's all-time leader for the highest winning percentage in the regular season (.605), having led Miami to a 42–40 record in his first season and a 59–23 record in his second year. He spearheaded Miami's 2005 campaign, where they held the top seed in the east, swept their first two playoff opponents and made it to the Conference Finals.

An 11–10 record early into the 2005–2006 season prompted Riley to come out of retirement and replace Van Gundy. Shortly thereafter, Riley would win his fifth and final championship as a head coach, as well as Miami's first championship in 2006. Riley would retire permanently following the 15-win 2007–2008 season, but once again remained as team president. His hand-picked replacement, longtime assistant Erik Spoelstra, is the current Heat head coach, a position he has held since 2008. At 38, he was the youngest head coach in the league at the time, as well as the first Filipino-American head coach in league history. Throughout his brief tenure, Spoelstra has not missed the playoffs, even taking the team to four consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals, culminating in back-to-back championships in 2012 and 2013.

Franchise accomplishments and awards

Franchise leaders

Bold denotes still active with team.

Italic denotes still active but not with team. Points scored (regular season) (as of the end of the 2017–18 season)[39]

  1. Dwyane Wade (20,473)
  2. Alonzo Mourning (9,459)
  3. Glen Rice (9,248)
  4. LeBron James (7,919)
  5. Chris Bosh (6,914)
  6. Rony Seikaly (6,742)
  7. Udonis Haslem (6,486)
  8. Tim Hardaway (6,335)
  9. Eddie Jones (6,194)
  10. Grant Long (5,473)
  11. Mario Chalmers (4,641)
  12. Kevin Edwards (4,362)
  13. Goran Dragic (4,229)
  14. Bimbo Coles (4,031)
  15. Shaquille O'Neal (4,010)
  16. Hassan Whiteside (3,667)
  17. Brian Grant (3,433)
  18. Michael Beasley (2,927)
  19. Steve Smith (2,905)
  20. Jamal Mashburn (2,835)

Other statistics (regular season) (as of July 20, 2018)[39]

NBA All-Star Weekend

References

  1. ^ "NBA.com/Stats–Miami Heat seasons". Stats.NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Retrieved January 29, 2017.
  2. ^ "History: Team by Team" (PDF). 2018-19 Official NBA Guide. NBA Properties, Inc. October 8, 2018. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  3. ^ Phillips, DeAndré (November 18, 2008). "The New MH Logo". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Retrieved June 2, 2016.
  4. ^ "Miami Heat Reproduction and Usage Guideline Sheet". NBA Properties, Inc. Retrieved August 10, 2016.
  5. ^ "MIAMI HEAT AND ULTIMATE SOFTWARE ANNOUNCE JERSEY PATCH PARTNERSHIP". HEAT.com (Press release). NBA Media Ventures, LLC. September 21, 2017. Retrieved December 17, 2017.
  6. ^ "HEAT Announce Front Office Promotions". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. September 28, 2013. Retrieved July 8, 2016.
  7. ^ Note: The team itself generally treats the name HEAT as singular, but this article uses Heat as a collective plural, as is common in American English for names of teams.
  8. ^ "Dwyane Wade announces return to Miami Heat for 'one last dance'". NBA.com. September 16, 2018. Retrieved November 21, 2018.
  9. ^ "HEAT Select Dwyane Wade with the 5th Pick in NBA Draft". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. June 27, 2003. Archived from the original on July 4, 2003. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  10. ^ DuPree, David (July 14, 2004). "It's Official: Shaq traded to Heat for three players, draft pick". USA Today. Retrieved June 21, 2013.
  11. ^ "HEAT Acquire Antoine Walker, Jason Williams & James Posey". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. August 3, 2005. Archived from the original on August 5, 2005. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  12. ^ Bensch, Bob (June 21, 2006). "Wade Leads Heat Past Mavericks to Win First NBA Title (Update1)". Bloomberg. Retrieved June 21, 2013.
  13. ^ "Game-by-game review: Miami Heat's win streak". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. March 14, 2013. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  14. ^ LeBron James; Lee Jenkins (July 11, 2014). "LeBron James announces return to Cleveland Cavaliers". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  15. ^ Bleacher Report [@BleacherReport] (May 20, 2015). "NBA Draft order for lottery teams after the #NBADraftLottery" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  16. ^ Wallace, Michael (July 13, 2016). "Riley left with another challenge after letting Wade walk". ESPN.com. ESPN.com. Retrieved December 8, 2018.
  17. ^ Reynolds, Tim. "Pat Riley raves about Dwyane Wade, but avoids all contract talk". NBA.com. The Associated Press. Retrieved December 8, 2018.
  18. ^ Wade, Dwyane. "Homecoming". Dwyane Wade. Retrieved July 8, 2016.
  19. ^ "Miami HEAT Statement On Chris Bosh". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. September 23, 2016. Retrieved September 27, 2016.
  20. ^ Reynolds, Tim (September 23, 2016). "Bosh fails physical, not cleared for training camp". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Archived from the original on September 26, 2016. Retrieved September 27, 2016.
  21. ^ Smith, Sekou (September 26, 2016). "Heat president Riley says Bosh's career in Miami is 'probably over'". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Retrieved September 27, 2016.
  22. ^ a b "HEAT Waive Chris Bosh". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. July 4, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2017.
  23. ^ "Reports: Doctor's ruling on Chris Bosh's health will help Heat's cap situation". ESPN.com. June 3, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2017.
  24. ^ "Dwyane Wade is finally returning to Miami, where he belongs". Sbnation.com. Retrieved August 1, 2018.
  25. ^ "Miami Heat vs Chicago Bulls – Recap". Scores.espn.go.com. March 28, 2013. Retrieved May 14, 2015.
  26. ^ "Miami Heat win 27th straight, run away from Orlando Magic". Azcentral.com. March 25, 2013. Retrieved May 14, 2015.
  27. ^ Reynolds, Tim (June 3, 2013). "Heat off to Finals, beat Pacers 99-76 in Game 7". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Retrieved November 5, 2018.
  28. ^ Dan Favale (January 13, 2014). "Mark Cuban: Hate Not 'Strong Enough' Word to Describe Dislike of Miami Heat". Bleacher Report. Retrieved May 14, 2015.
  29. ^ "HEAT to Begin Broadcasting Games on WAXY 790 The Ticket". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. November 6, 2010. Retrieved June 16, 2011.
  30. ^ Coon, Larry. "NBA Salary Cap FAQ – 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement". Retrieved April 13, 2014. If the player is already under contract to, or signs a contract with a non-NBA team, the team retains the player's draft rights for one year after the player's obligation to the non-NBA team ends. Essentially, the clock stops as long as the player plays pro ball outside the NBA.
  31. ^ a b "Heat retires first number". Sports Illustrated. Time Warner Company. April 11, 2003. Retrieved January 30, 2012.
  32. ^ Phillips, DeAndré (November 7, 2005). "Dan the Man". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Retrieved March 29, 2009.
  33. ^ Reynolds, Tim (July 4, 2017). "Miami Heat waive Chris Bosh; plan to retire No. 1 jersey". NBA.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Associated Press. Retrieved August 1, 2017.
  34. ^ "HEAT To Retire Chris Bosh's No. 1 Jersey". NBA.com. February 4, 2019. Retrieved February 8, 2019.
  35. ^ "Hardaway's Heat jersey retired". ESPN. October 29, 2009. Retrieved January 30, 2012.
  36. ^ "2014–15 Miami Heat Media Guide" (PDF). National Basketball Association. October 20, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  37. ^ "HEAT TO RETIRE SHAQUILLE O'NEAL'S NO. 32". HEAT.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. November 22, 2016. Retrieved November 21, 2016.
  38. ^ "Heat retire Mourning's No. 33". ESPN. March 31, 2009. Retrieved January 30, 2012.
  39. ^ a b "Miami Heat: Players". Basketball Reference. April 18, 2017. Retrieved April 18, 2017.

External links

2006 NBA Finals

The 2006 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2005–06 National Basketball Association season. The Miami Heat won the title in six games over the Dallas Mavericks, becoming the third team—after the 1969 Celtics and the 1977 Trail Blazers—to win a championship after trailing 0–2 in the series. Dwyane Wade of the Heat was named Most Valuable Player of the series.This series marked the first time since 1971 that the Finals featured two teams playing in their first NBA Finals series. It was the first occasion since 1978 that two teams who had never won an NBA Championship contested the NBA Finals. The two teams met again five years later in 2011, the second Finals appearance for both franchises, with the Mavericks winning the rematch over the Heat.

This was the second NBA Finals matchup of teams from Florida and Texas, after the Houston Rockets and Orlando Magic contested the 1995 NBA Finals. Until the Miami Heat defeated the San Antonio Spurs in the 2013 NBA Finals, it was the last Finals loss by a team from Texas (the Rockets lost in 1981 and 1986) against eight championships (five by the Spurs, two by the Rockets, and one by the Mavericks, who won a rematch of this Finals in 2011).

2006 NBA playoffs

The 2006 NBA playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 2005–06 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat defeating the Western Conference champion Dallas Mavericks 4 games to 2 in the NBA Finals. Dwyane Wade was named NBA Finals MVP.

The Clippers were the biggest surprise, as they not only made the playoffs for the first time since 1997, but advanced to the second round for the first time since 1976, when they were the Buffalo Braves. They came within 1 game of making the conference finals for the first time, but lost Game 7 to the Suns.

2006 was the playoff debut of LeBron James, who helped the Cavaliers eke out 1-point OT victories over the Washington Wizards in Games 5 and 6 of their first-round series to advance. It was their first playoff appearance since 1998, and they earned their first playoff series win since 1993. Against the two-time defending Eastern Conference champion Detroit Pistons, the Cavs were routed in Game 1 and lost Game 2 by 6 before winning the next 3 and being 1 game away from beating the Pistons. Detroit recovered and won the last 2 to take the series in 7.

2011 NBA Finals

The 2011 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2010–11 season of the National Basketball Association (NBA) in which the Western Conference champion Dallas Mavericks defeated the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat 4 games to 2 to win their first NBA championship. The series was held from May 31 to June 12, 2011. German player Dirk Nowitzki was named the Finals MVP, becoming the second European to win the award after Tony Parker (2007) and the first German player to do so. The series was a rematch of the 2006 NBA Finals, which the Heat had won in six games.

Going into the series, the Heat were heavy favorites with their newly acquired superstars LeBron James and Chris Bosh along with returning superstar Dwyane Wade.The Dallas Mavericks became the first team in NBA history since the institution of the 2–3–2 format to enter Game 3 tied at one, lose Game 3 and still win the Finals. The previous 11 times this occurred, the Game 3 winner went on to win the series. The Mavericks also became just the 7th team, and the first since 1988, to come back and win the Finals after being down in the series two or more separate times (one game to none, and later two games to one). The previous six times this happened, the Finals ended in seven games; Dallas became the first team in NBA history to do it in six games.

ABC averaged a 10.1 rating, 11.7 million households and nearly 17.3 million viewers with the 2011 Finals, according to Nielsen.

2011 NBA playoffs

The 2011 NBA playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 2010–11 season. The tournament concluded with the Western Conference champion Dallas Mavericks defeating the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat 4 games to 2 in the NBA Finals. Dirk Nowitzki was named NBA Finals MVP.

The Chicago Bulls achieved several "firsts" since 1998: the East's best record, a Central Division title, and over 60 victories. They also clinched the NBA's best record for the first time since 1997, guaranteeing home-court advantage in every round. They advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 1998, and lost the ECF for the first time since 1990.

The Indiana Pacers appeared in the playoffs for the first time since 2006, as did the Memphis Grizzlies. The New York Knicks made the playoffs for the first time since 2004, but this was their first playoff appearance as an above-.500 team since 2001. The Philadelphia 76ers and New Orleans Hornets appeared for the third time in 4 years. The other 11 teams were in the 2010 NBA Playoffs. The Oklahoma City Thunder headed to the playoffs with their first Northwest Division title under this incarnation.

This was the final postseason appearance for the New Orleans franchise while known as the Hornets, as the team was renamed the Pelicans before the 2013–14 season.

For the first time since the 16-team format was introduced in 1984, the top two seeds from the same conference (San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Lakers of the West) lost Game 1 of the first round. The Spurs lost to the Grizzlies, who won their first playoff game in team history, while the Lakers lost Game 1 to the Hornets and were subsequently swept by the Mavericks in the next round. Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic tied a franchise record with 46 points (31 in the first half) in Game 1 of the first round against the Atlanta Hawks, tying Tracy McGrady's total in Game 2 of the 2003 First Round against the Detroit Pistons.

With a 4–1 series win over the Denver Nuggets, the Thunder won their first playoff series since relocating to Oklahoma City. The Boston Celtics swept a best-of-7 playoff series for the first time since winning the 1986 Eastern Conference Finals with a 4-game sweep of the Knicks; prior to the series win they had not swept a series overall since 1992, in Larry Bird's final season.

The Grizzlies followed up their first playoff-game win with their first playoff series win ever. They became the fourth 8th-seeded team ever to advance to the Conference Semifinals after defeating the Spurs in 6, and the second since the first round expanded to a best-of-7 format in 2003. In addition, this marked the first time that no first-round series was pushed to a Game 7 since the current format was introduced. Also, the 2011 Playoffs was the first time since 2007 that only one series went to a Game 7.

The Los Angeles Lakers, who went to the Finals the previous 3 years, were swept by the Mavericks in the second round. It was the first time that Lakers head coach Phil Jackson had been swept in a playoff series. It would be the first time since 1996 and only the second since 1990 in which the Lakers lost a Western Conference playoff series despite having home court advantage.

Game 7 of the Grizzlies–Thunder series ensured a 12th straight postseason with at least one Game 7 played. The last without one was the 1999 NBA Playoffs.

2012 NBA Finals

The 2012 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2011–12 season of the National Basketball Association (NBA), and the conclusion of the season's playoffs. The Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat defeated the Western Conference champion Oklahoma City Thunder 4 games to 1 to win their second NBA title. Heat Small forward LeBron James was named the Finals MVP.

This marked the fourth time in franchise history that the Oklahoma City Thunder appeared in the NBA Finals, and the first time since the Seattle SuperSonics relocated from Seattle, Washington to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in 2008. The franchise had previously appeared as the SuperSonics in 1996, where they lost to the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls. It also marked the Miami Heat's third appearance in the NBA Finals. The Heat previously appeared in 2006 and 2011, both times against the Dallas Mavericks.

It was the first NBA Finals in 14 seasons that was not held in either the states of California or Texas; the 3 teams that won the previous 13 Western Conference titles the Dallas Mavericks, the Los Angeles Lakers and the San Antonio Spurs were eliminated by Oklahoma City in that order.

The series began on June 12, five days later than its originally planned June 7 start. This delay was due to the lockout that pushed the start of the season to late December and shortened the regular season to 66 games. The series then ended on June 21. Under the 2–3–2 rotation, the Thunder had home-court advantage, since they had a better regular season record than the Heat, and thus hosted the first two games. The Heat also became the first team since the 2008–09 Los Angeles Lakers to win the NBA title after losing the previous year, and the first Eastern Conference team to do so since the 1988–89 Detroit Pistons.

2012 NBA playoffs

The 2012 NBA playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 2011–12 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat defeating the Western Conference champion Oklahoma City Thunder 4 games to 1 in the NBA Finals. LeBron James was named NBA Finals MVP.

Except for the Los Angeles Clippers and Utah Jazz, the playoffs featured the same teams from 2011; all 8 from the East were the same as last year. They also all had records over .500, the first time since 2005. The Clippers made the playoffs for the first time since 2006, while Utah made it for the 5th time in the last 6 years, it was their first without Jerry Sloan as head coach since 1988.

The Indiana Pacers opened the playoffs at home for the first time since 2004, while the Memphis Grizzlies earned home-court advantage for the first time in franchise history. For the fourth time since 2006, a division winner (in this case the Atlantic Division champion Boston Celtics) opened the playoffs on the road.

The defending champions Dallas Mavericks were swept by the Oklahoma City Thunder 4–0, becoming the third defending champion to be swept in the First Round after the Philadelphia Warriors in 1957 and Miami Heat in 2007, and second after Miami to be done so in a 7-game series. It was the first time the Mavericks were swept in a 7-game series, and only their second sweep since 1990.

The New York Knicks lost their 13th straight playoff game in Game 3 against the Heat, breaking Memphis' record from 2004–06 for the longest playoff losing streak.

The 8th-seeded Philadelphia 76ers defeated the 1st-seeded Bulls 4–2, becoming only the 5th team in NBA history to do so. Following the Grizzlies' 2011 upset of the 1st-seeded Spurs, this marked the first time in straight seasons an 8th-seed upset a #1 seed. The 76ers suffered the same fate as the Grizzlies, forcing the next series to a Game 7 but losing on the road.

Game 7 of the Lakers–Nuggets series ensured a 13th straight postseason with at least one Game 7 played. The last without one was the 1999 NBA Playoffs.

The Spurs became the fourth team and first from the West to go 8–0 through the playoffs' first two rounds following the 2003 change in the first round format to 7 games. The Heat in 2005, Cavs in 2009 and Magic in 2010, also went 8–0 through the first two rounds. In addition, all 3 lost Game 1 of their Conference Finals. The Spurs broke this trend by defeating the Thunder in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals. By winning 20 straight games, they set an NBA record for the longest winning streak carried over from the regular season to the playoffs, which was broken with the Game 3 loss, and finished a win short of tying the longest unbeaten playoff run in a single postseason. They ended up losing the series 4–2 after leading 2–0.

The Chicago Bulls were eliminated after losing Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah to injuries, and the New York Knicks lost to the Miami Heat while losing Baron Davis and Iman Shumpert to knee injuries. The Heat were not immune, losing Chris Bosh for most of the playoffs en route to their championship. Commissioner David Stern initially said there was no connection between the injuries and the lockout that compressed the regular season to 66-game in 124 days; however, he backed off those comments a week later, saying more research was needed.

2012–13 NBA season

The 2012–13 NBA season was the 67th season of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The regular season began on Tuesday, October 30, 2012, when the 2011–12 NBA Champions Miami Heat started the season by hosting the Boston Celtics. The 2013 NBA All-Star Game was played on February 17, 2013, at Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. The regular season ended on Wednesday, April 17, 2013, and the playoffs began on Saturday, April 20, 2013 and ended on June 20, 2013, with the Miami Heat defeating the San Antonio Spurs in seven games to win the 2013 NBA Finals.

2013 NBA Finals

The 2013 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2012–13 NBA season and the conclusion of the season's playoffs. The Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat defeated the Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs to win their second straight title. The Finals began with Game 1 on June 6, and ended with Game 7 on June 20.Miami became the sixth team to win consecutive NBA championships, joining the Boston Celtics (1959–1966, 1968–1969), the Los Angeles Lakers (1949–1950, 1952–1954, 1987–1988, 2000–2002, 2009–2010), the Detroit Pistons (1989–1990), the Chicago Bulls (1991–1993, 1996–1998), and the Houston Rockets (1994–1995). This series marked the fifth time the Spurs have made the NBA Finals since 1999, second-most for any franchise in that span behind the Los Angeles Lakers. The Spurs had won all of their previous four finals appearances, putting them only behind the six-time champion Chicago Bulls for most titles without ever losing a Finals, making this series the first Finals loss in Spurs history. This series was also the first time San Antonio had played in the NBA Finals without home court advantage, as Miami had home-court advantage based on their league-best regular season record. It was the Heat's third consecutive NBA Finals appearance, the first Eastern Conference team to achieve that since the Chicago Bulls (1996–1998). This marked the first time a team made three consecutive Finals appearances since the Los Angeles Lakers did so in 2008–2010.

Four former NBA Finals MVPs played in the series (the Spurs' Tim Duncan and Tony Parker, and the Heat's Dwyane Wade and LeBron James), the most since 1987. The 2013 Finals also set a record for most international players on either Finals roster (10). Tim Duncan became the fourth player in NBA history to make a Finals appearance in three different decades.This marked the last NBA Finals played during the tenure of NBA commissioner David Stern. It also marked the last time the Finals used the 2–3–2 format, after which it reverted to the 2–2–1–1–1 format.

As they were previously close to meeting in the 2005 Finals, the Spurs and Heat would both advance to the 2014 NBA Finals, where the Spurs won in five games.

2013 NBA playoffs

The 2013 NBA playoffs were the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 2012–13 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat defeating the Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs 4 games to 3 in the NBA Finals. LeBron James was named NBA Finals MVP.

The Miami Heat headed into the playoffs with a franchise-best 66 wins, topping the league in the regular season. Their 2012 Finals opponents, the Oklahoma City Thunder, topped the Western Conference with 60 wins, making it the first time since 2006 that the two teams who faced off in the previous year's finals topped their respective conferences in the next regular season. However, when the Thunder lost to the Memphis Grizzlies in the Conference Semifinals, home court advantage in the Western Conference Finals went to the San Antonio Spurs, who were two games ahead of the Grizzlies.

The New York Knicks entered the playoffs with their best regular-season performance since 1997, finishing atop the Atlantic Division for the first time since 1994. The Indiana Pacers won the Central Division for the first time since 2004, while the Los Angeles Clippers made franchise history by winning their first Pacific Division title and having a 56-win season, tied with the Memphis Grizzlies, whose 56 wins were also a franchise record. The Denver Nuggets earned the West's third seed and headed into the playoffs with a franchise-record 57 wins.

The Brooklyn Nets and Golden State Warriors made their first playoff appearances since 2007. This also marked the first time that Barclays Center hosted a playoff game. The Houston Rockets made their first playoff appearance since 2009, while the Milwaukee Bucks appeared for the first time since 2010. The Bucks were the first team since 2011 to make the playoffs despite finishing below .500 in the regular season.

The San Antonio Spurs continued the longest active playoff streak at 16 straight appearances. The Dallas Mavericks missed the playoffs for the first time since 2000, ending the second-longest active streak of playoff appearances, which stretched 12 years. The Orlando Magic also missed the playoffs for the first time since 2006, ending the longest active streak in the Eastern Conference.

Game 7 between Chicago and Brooklyn marked the 14th straight postseason with at least one Game 7. The 1999 NBA Playoffs was the last time that a Game 7 was not played.

2014 NBA Finals

The 2014 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2013–14 season of the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the conclusion of the season's playoffs. The Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs defeated the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat in five games (4 games to 1) for the Spurs' fifth NBA championship in franchise history. The Spurs outscored the Heat in the series by the largest average point differential (14.0) in Finals history, and ended their chances of a three-peat, the first that would have occurred since the 2000-2002 Los Angeles Lakers, led by Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal. San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard was named the Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP).

This was a Finals rematch from the previous NBA season, which Miami had won in seven games, handing the Spurs the franchise's first-ever Finals defeat in 2013. This marked the 12th Finals rematch, but only the fifth since the ABA–NBA merger in 1976. The Spurs had home-court advantage, since the team finished the regular season with a better record (62–20) than the Heat (54–28). For the first time since 1984, the Finals were played in a 2–2–1–1–1 format (Games 1 and 2 at home for the higher seeded team, Games 3 and 4 at home for the lower seeded team, Game 5 at the higher, Game 6 at the lower, and Game 7 at the higher). The series began on June 5, 2014, and ended on June 15, 2014.

2014 NBA playoffs

The 2014 NBA playoffs were the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 2013–14 season. The tournament concluded with the Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs defeating the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat 4 games to 1 in the NBA Finals. Kawhi Leonard was named NBA Finals MVP.

For the first time since 1984, the NBA Finals were played in a 2–2–1–1–1 format (the higher seed hosts Games 1, 2, 5, and 7, the lower seed hosts Games 3, 4, and 6). They were also the first playoffs overseen by Commissioner Adam Silver.

The Spurs continued the longest active playoff streak in the NBA at 17 straight appearances. The Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards made their first playoff appearances since 2008, while the Charlotte Bobcats, in their final playoff appearance before renaming themselves the Hornets, returned after a four-year absence. All three teams from Texas made the playoffs for the first time since 2009. For the first time since 2005, the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks did not qualify for the playoffs in the same year. For the first time since 1994, the Lakers and Celtics missed the playoffs in the same season. In addition, this was the first time in NBA history that the Knicks, Celtics, and Lakers missed the playoffs in the same year (the Celtics last missed the playoffs in 2007) The Denver Nuggets also missed the playoffs for the first time since 2003.

The first round of the 2014 Playoffs is generally considered one of the greatest postseason rounds in NBA history. The first 11 days of the playoffs saw at least one road team win on its opponent's home floor. That ended on April 30 with the Raptors, Spurs, and Houston Rockets all winning at home against the Brooklyn Nets, Dallas Mavericks, and Portland Trail Blazers, respectively. The 24 road wins is an NBA playoffs record for the first round. In addition, the 2014 playoffs featured a record eight first-round games that went into overtime, including four straight between the Memphis Grizzlies and Oklahoma City Thunder (Games 2–5), another NBA record.

Five of the eight first-round series were extended to game sevens. Three of the series, Atlanta Hawks at Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies at Oklahoma City Thunder, and Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Clippers, were played on May 3, which marked the first time in NBA history that three Game 7s were played on the same day. Two other game sevens were played on the following day, featuring Dallas at San Antonio and Brooklyn at Toronto. The five game sevens in the first round already tied the record for the most number of game sevens in any NBA playoffs, set in the 1994 NBA Playoffs. However, the NBA only adopted a best-of-seven format for the first round beginning in 2003. The Hawks–Pacers series was the first series to force a Game 7, making this postseason the 15th consecutive postseason to have at least one Game 7. The 1999 NBA Playoffs were the last time a Game 7 wasn't played.

This postseason and the previous year's postseason marked the first time since the 2000 and 2001 playoffs that both number 5 seeds knocked out both number 4 seeds in back-to-back years.

This was the first postseason (and the seventh time since 1972, when the current playoff system was put in place) in which the top two seeds played in the Conference Finals both in the East and the West.

When they defeated Indiana on the road in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the Heat set an NBA record by recording their 15th straight playoff series in which they earned at least one road win. The Heat then extended the record to 16 straight road wins in playoff series by winning Game 2 of the NBA Finals in San Antonio.

Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Tyrone Wade Jr. ( dwayn; born January 17, 1982) is an American former professional basketball player. Wade spent the majority of his 16-year career playing for the Miami Heat in the National Basketball Association. After a successful college basketball career with the Marquette Golden Eagles, Wade was drafted fifth overall in the 2003 NBA draft by the Heat. In his third season, Wade led the Heat to their first NBA Championship in franchise history and was named the 2006 NBA Finals MVP. At the 2008 Summer Olympics, Wade led the United States men's basketball team, commonly known as the "Redeem Team", in scoring, and helped them capture the gold medal. In the 2008–09 season, Wade led the league in scoring and earned his first NBA scoring title. With LeBron James and Chris Bosh, Wade helped guide Miami to four consecutive NBA Finals from 2011 to 2014, winning back-to-back championships in 2012 and 2013. After playing for the Chicago Bulls and the Cleveland Cavaliers, Wade was traded back to Miami in February 2018. A 13-time NBA All-Star, Wade is Miami's all-time leader in points, games, assists and steals, shots made and shots taken.

Erik Spoelstra

Erik Jon Spoelstra ( SPOHL-strə; born November 1, 1970) is an American professional basketball coach who is the head coach for the Miami Heat of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Of Filipino descent from his mother's side, he is the first Asian-American head coach in the history of the four major North American sports leagues and the first Asian-American head coach to win an NBA championship.From 2001 to 2008, Spoelstra served as assistant coach and director of scouting for the team. Thereafter he was promoted to head coach. Prior to the 2010–11 season, team President Pat Riley assembled a superstar trio of free agents LeBron James and Chris Bosh joining Dwyane Wade. While Spoelstra was head coach, the Heat made four consecutive finals appearances including trips to the 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014 NBA Finals, winning the championship in both 2012 and 2013.

Greg Oden

Gregory Wayne Oden Jr. (born January 22, 1988) is an American former professional basketball player. Oden, a 7 ft 0 in (2.13 m), 250-pound (110 kg) center, played college basketball at the Ohio State University for one season, during which the team was the Big Ten Champion and the tournament runner-up in the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship.

On June 28, 2007, Greg Oden was selected first overall in the 2007 NBA draft by the Portland Trail Blazers. He underwent microfracture surgery of the knee in September 2007, and missed the entire 2007–08 NBA season as a result. He recovered and made his NBA debut on opening night 2008. In March 2012, he was waived from the Trail Blazers after a long history of injuries. He signed with the Miami Heat in August 2013, more than three years after last appearing in an NBA game, and played with the team through the 2014 NBA Playoffs.

After playing in the CBA during their 2015–16 season, Oden stated in October 2016 that he was done with basketball and would not be returning as a player. In April 2018, Oden declared himself eligible for the BIG3 draft, but was not selected. In July 2018, he played in The Basketball Tournament 2018.

Michael Beasley

Michael Paul Beasley Jr. (born January 9, 1989) is an American professional basketball player who plays for the Guangdong Southern Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association. He played college basketball for Kansas State University for one year before declaring for the NBA draft in 2008. He is regarded as one of the best freshman college basketball players of the 2000s. Though he is ambidextrous, he shoots left-handed.

Pat Riley

Patrick James Riley (born March 20, 1945) is an American professional basketball executive, and a former coach and player in the National Basketball Association (NBA). He has been the team president of the Miami Heat since 1995 and head coach in two separate tenures (1995 through 2003, and 2005 through 2008). Regarded as one of the greatest NBA coaches of all time, Riley has served as the head coach of five championship teams. He won four with the Los Angeles Lakers during their Showtime era in the 1980s, and one with the Heat in 2006.

He was named NBA Coach of the Year three times (1989–90, 1992–93 and 1996–97, as head coach of the Lakers, New York Knicks and Heat, respectively). He was head coach of an NBA All-Star Game team nine times: eight times with the Western Conference team (1982, 1983, 1985–1990, all as head coach of the Lakers) and once with the Eastern team (1993, as head coach of the Knicks). He is the first North American sports figure to win a championship as a player, assistant coach, head coach, and as an executive. In 1996, he was named one of the 10 Greatest Coaches in NBA history. As a player, he played for the Lakers' championship team in 1972. Riley most recently won the 2012 and 2013 NBA championships with the Heat as their team president. He received the Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award from the NBA Coaches Association on June 20, 2012.

Scott Hastings (basketball)

Scott Alan Hastings (born June 3, 1960) is a retired American player in the National Basketball Association. His career spanned from 1982–1993 and he played forward/center for the New York Knicks, Atlanta Hawks, Miami Heat, Detroit Pistons and Denver Nuggets.

Southeast Division (NBA)

The Southeast Division is one of the three divisions in the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The division consists of five teams, the Atlanta Hawks, the Charlotte Hornets, the Miami Heat, the Orlando Magic and the Washington Wizards.

The division was created at the start of the 2004–05 season, when the league expanded from 29 to 30 teams with the addition of the Charlotte Bobcats. The league realigned itself into three divisions in each conference. The Southeast Division began with five inaugural members, the Hawks, the Bobcats, the Heat, the Magic and the Wizards. The Hawks joined from the Central Division, while the Heat, the Magic and the Wizards joined from the Atlantic Division. The Bobcats changed their name to the Hornets effective with the 2014–15 season, after which it assumed the history of the original Hornets from 1988–2002. The Hornets name was previously used by the now-New Orleans Pelicans from 2002–2013.

The Heat has won the most Southeast Division titles, with nine, while the Magic have won three and the Hawks and the Wizards have both won one. The Heat won the Southeast Division in four consecutive seasons from 2011 to 2014. Miami's three championships (2006, 2012, and 2013) each came after winning the Southeast Division. The most recent division champions are the Orlando Magic.

Stan Van Gundy

Stanley Alan Van Gundy (born August 26, 1959) is an American former professional basketball coach and NBA analyst who most recently served as the head coach and president of basketball operations for the Detroit Pistons of the National Basketball Association (NBA) from 2014 to 2018. From 2003 to 2005, he was the head coach of the Miami Heat but resigned in 2005 mid-season, turning the job over to Pat Riley. Van Gundy then coached the Orlando Magic for five seasons from 2007 to 2012, leading them to the 2009 NBA Finals. He is the brother of former New York Knicks and Houston Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy.

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