Alan Dell

Not so fast, Miami: Title no sure thing

A warning to Miami: Brace yourself.

In the next year or so you are going to experience the biggest crash since the stock market fell into a pile of rubble in 1929.

You have no one to blame but yourselves. Your management was blind to the red flags and saw only greenbacks flowing into its coffers.

So what do you have?

The King without a Ring!

A LeBron James, whose ego is so big he cannot see himself in the mirror; a man, whose only NBA championships can be found in the minds of preseason prognosticators.

The Chosen One has chosen the easy way out, admitting he doesn’t have what it takes to lead a team to a title.

In the process, he made Kobe Bryant the undisputed best player in the NBA.

So you believe LeBron, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh have made you a champion? Then you haven’t done your homework.

The NBA annals are full of teams that brought two or three superstars together and have little to show for it.

You can start with the Los Angeles Lakers that once had Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain and Elgin Baylor wearing the same uniform. That’s two, or possibly three, of the best 10 players in NBA history.

They came together in 1968 with Chamberlain (like LeBron) a reigning MVP. West won his only title in 1972, when Baylor retired nine games into the season. So as a unit this trio came up blank.

But you don’t have to go back that far.

The 1996-97 Houston Rockets had Charles Barkley, Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler, all Hall of Famers. They lost in the conference finals, the next season went 41-41 and Drexler retired.

Julius Erving and Moses Malone won a title with 1983, but in the next two years with those two and Charles Barkley failed to win a championship.

Oscar Robertson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar played four seasons for Milwaukee and won one title.

The ’03-’04 Lakers had Karl Malone, Gary Payton, Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant and lost in the NBA Finals with Phil Jackson spending too much time soothing egos and trying to stop Payton from whining.

In Karl Malone and John Stockton, Utah had the number two NBA career scorer and top career assist man for more than a decade, yet never won a title.

Get the picture!

It takes a lot more than two or three superstars to win David Stern’s gold ball, and the jury is still out on whether Bosh is an elite player.

You need role players who accept their jobs, a bench with some quality depth and chemistry. At this moment, the Miami Heat have none.

James, Wade and Bosh don’t seem more formidable than the Lakers with Bryant, Pau Gasol and Ron Artest backed up by Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom. And those teams in Orlando, Boston and now Chicago with Carlos Boozer are not exactly doormats.

You say your new three are young and in their prime, but that could be worse than having veterans. At 25, how many years will LeBron be willing to be Wade’s caddy or vice versa.

Most unlucky person in this landscape change?

Heat head coach Erik Spoeistra, a bright young guy, who will be the scapegoat when the Heat don’t get off to a good start or are eliminated from the playoffs. He must already feel Pat Riley breathing down his neck.

Luckiest team?

Lakers: This new Heat trio took the target off the backs of the two-time defending NBA champs and put it on themselves.

It will take a long time for King James to repair the image he damaged Thursday night with that fiasco of a press conference. As for ESPN, the four-letter network lost its credibility a long time ago. It has become reality TV dressed up as a sports news program.

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