The regular season was a downer marked by one of the more surreal announcements when Pat Riley took over for Stan Van Gundy. Riley cried. Van Gundy smiled, Riley got ripped nationally for it, but its come out since that he had to choose between Van Gundy and Shaquille ONeal. Not a good position to be, but he chose right. The Heats post-season run said as much. It wasnt a thing of beauty, as players bickered on the court. But the playoffs signaled Dwyane Wades arrival as a superstar. His play in the Finals (34.7 points and 7.8-rebounds per game) were ranked the best ever in a championship series. The only disappointing part was when this locker-room contraption Riley had kept under a sheet all post-season as some motivational vehicle only turned out to be a tub of cards that read, "15 Strong."
Joe Cavaretta, Sun Sentinel
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