Ira Winderman: In metrics of misery, this Heat season one for the ages

Ira Winderman, South Florida Sun-Sentinel on

Published in Basketball

MIAMI — To the Miami Heat’s credit, there at least has been candor about just how trying a season this has been.

Expectations have not been met. Opportunities have been squandered. Disappointment often carried the day.

Which led to a question this past week to those in and around the organization, many who have been around from the start or close to the start:

Has this been the most disappointing/frustrating season of the franchise’s 35?

No, not the worst. Not with a pair of 15-67 clunkers in the mix. But that was with Ron Rothstein asked to drive an Edsel in the augural 1988-89 go-round and then the Heat in full tank-a-thon mode in 2007-08, when the closing-night rotation featured the likes of Stephane Lasme, Kasib Powell, Earl Barron and Mark Blount.

Those were times when you could see it coming, as it was with other trying seasons, when from the outset it was clear there either was not enough in place to contend or a goal of building toward something better for future seasons.


But when using both frustration and disappointment as the combined metrics of misery, an argument can be made that unless there is some type of miraculous postseason reversal and revival, 2022-23 has to go down as an all-time disappointment, if only because of where 2022-23 ended, one game, one victory, one shot shy of the second NBA Finals appearance in three seasons.

Yes, recency bias, certainly. But misery that also has been palatable.

So, has anything previous come close? It is a tough call, but we’ll offer a few as a means of comparison.

2006-07: Coming off the 2006 championship, the expectation of success certainly was greater than ultimately being swept out of the first round in 2007 by the Chicago Bulls. But considering that championship defense began with a 108-66 opening-night loss to the Bulls, perhaps could have seen it coming.


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