When Miami was desperate of winning an NBA championship they went shopping and move heaven and earth just to get Big Daddy Shaq. Miami won the championship on that same year and the emergence of a new superstar Dwane Wade was recognized.
But it was only a pinch of taste of what Nirvana was like after they were easily handed down defeat by a young resurging Bulls team in the playoffs and what followed was a string of defeats, frustrations and doubts as Miami became from one of the championship contenders to one of the worst record team in the NBA right now.
Miami became desperate and the need for change is eminent. Shaq’s invincibility is slowly depleting and the once dominating center is averaging below his average numbers and to top it all a series of hip injuries made the fans question about his ability and whether he would still deliver a second championship ring to Miami.
Beating the trade deadline Miami made an unexpected move by trading Shaq in exchange for the versatile Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks from Phoenix. I was thinking no one in their right senses would accept a trade from Miami since Shaq had 20 million a year Salary left in his contract which could add up the remaining salary cap of the team thus making the team non eligible for signing free agents. Shaq with all the injuries is not the same dominating Shaq we know. He maybe has some left in his pockets but at age 36 injuries could very well play a vital role in conditioning and readiness since recovery is not that promising compared to young players.
Shawn Marion from the start of the season wanted out of Phoenix with All-stars Steve Nash and Amare Stoudamire… Marion was just left out of the picture.
Versatility is what Shawn Marion gives to Miami as he can play from point forward, small forward, power forward and even the Center position. He can guard Tony Parker, Dirk Nowitzki and even Kobe Bryant with quickness and sport a deadly shot from mid range. The question would be why Phoenix gambled on Shaq and all I can say is just two words… Championship ring… with the recent trade of Pau Gasol to the Lakers the Phoenix couldn’t afford to sit on their backs and wait for their season to be over. Phoenix was a championship contender in the West but because they lack the size they are just over powered by Tim Duncan, Carlos Boozer and big Dirk Nowitzki. Shaq could add up the hole in the center position for Phoenix. With Amare Stoudamire shipping back to his natural position (power forward)… Phoenix could very well have a big chance of winning the coveted ring. Phoenix have the youth in Borris Diaw, Leandro Barbosa ,DJ Strawberry and Amare Stoudamire mixed it up with the veterans in Steve Nash, Grant Hill and Shaq and to put it in an equation youth+veterans= ring. Phoenix could still run an up tempo game even with Shaq so there wont be any problems in terms of offense.
I believe Phoenix will have a shot for the championship this season. But nonetheless like Miami they will have to suffer some major setbacks in case everything turned sour and Shaq with his nagging injuries re occur.
But it’s not bad to taste a pinch of Nirvana anyways.