LeBron James knew Pat Riley would break the Heat up if they lose the 2012 ECF, so, he showed up big time and snatched the series back from the Celtics after going down 3-2.
The arguable GOAT of the game of basketball, LeBron James had put everything on the line when he was joining a 5x All-Star Dwyane Wade in Miami alongside the Raptors’ 4x All-Star Chris Bosh to form a Big 3.
Pat Riley assembled that squad with a decent supporting cast in 2010 to dominate the league in the upcoming decade. Everyone expected them to go off from that first season on and win the championship over the last few years’ star-studded championship teams like the Lakers and Celtics.
But those expectations hit the break when they lost the first NBA they reached in the very first season they came together and James was largely at fault for it. He averaged 17.8 points, 7.2 rebounds and 6.8 assists in 6 games.
Those are, to this day, his lowest numbers in any playoffs series. The King had to up his ante the next season to keep The Godfather in Miami happy.
LeBron James came up with a dominant 45/15/5 Game 6 performance to come on level terms with the Cs in the 2012 ECF
We all know that Miami Heat won two consecutive championships in the four straight Finals they reached between 2010 and 2014. But their first one could have been hampered by none other than the Celtics, who had already spoiled multiple years for James in his Cavaliers days.
In the Eastern Conference Finals, the Heat were 3-2 down against Paul Pierce and Co.and were to play Game 6 at TD Garden. James had this idea that it might turn out to be his group’s last year if they failed to win it all.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 20, 2020
So, the man came up with one of the best Playoffs performance of his life and put up 45 points, 15 rebounds, and 5 assists on 19-26 shooting.
And the rest, we all know is a Game 7 victory, leading up to the 2012 Championship. Then another one the next year. Then a failure in 2014, Wade’s declining health, and Bosh’s life-threatening condition finally brought an end to that Big 3.
They could have done a lot more if things went their way but then we wouldn’t have got ourselves the Cavaliers-Warriors rivalry which is arguably the greatest modern-day or maybe the all-time best rivalry.