MIAMI - Down Biscayne Boulevard the buses turned, Chris Bosh with the trophy, LeBron James with the cigar, confetti in the air, just like a year ago. Only when Erik Spoelstra again saw the, "sea of fans that will be etched forever in my mind," the question wasn't about the Heat anymore.
It was about everyone off the Heat bus. It was about the national chorus of three years. It was about the media. It was about the social world of tweets and blogs. It even was about Cleveland, to some extent.
Finally, does it stop?
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All the doubts. All the questions. All the loud debates if The Big Three should be broken up, of thinking this team is failing if they don't win it all or of picking the next nit involving LeBron James.
Finally, do they win for winning it all?
"I ain't got no worries,'' LeBron said to the crowd during the celebration in AmericanAirlines Arena. "You don't got no worries. Let's say it together. One … two … three …."
"I ain't got no worries," the crowd said.
He smiled. He stuck the unlit cigar back in his mouth. This was celebratory Monday for the Heat, a kicked-back day parades on double-decker buses and enjoyable conversation in the arena they've won consecutive titles.
Here was Dwyane Wade saying how near the end in Game 6 against San Antonio, "Me and LeBron were ready to fight" each other on the court. Here was Ray Allen saying his ensuing shot that game, "was the biggest ever in my career."
Here was Shane Battier, saying," I have secret from Game 7. I don't think we could do it without the horse-tranaut."
With that, he donned the horse mask he wore with an astronaut uniform in the team's Harlem Shake video earlier in the year.
"Here's our secret,'' he said.
That was Monday, funny Monday. Confessions. Perspective. Laughter. Even personal revelations, such as Erik Spoelstra's story told after the parade and after the arena celebration, about the aftermath of Game 3's loss in San Antonio.
"I was despondent,'' he said."I was beside myself. I went back to the suite to break down film with (his assistants). About 20 later, there's a knock on the door.
Heat President Pat Riley was holding three bottles of wine.
"Coach," Riley said, "what do you need me to do?"
They set him to breaking down tape along with the rest of them.
"Our roles were reversed,'' Spoelstra said, who worked for Coach Riley for years. "One of the special moments in my career."
"Spo Knows," was a T-shirt worn on this parade. And that title showed how much it changes for them on full merit. Look at this odd roster he had. Talented as it was, he couldn't just roll out players.
LeBron, the best player in the world, was the only constant. Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh blinked in and out loudly at various times. Mike Miller was sometimes Shane Battier, and vice versa. Mario Chalmers was sometimes, too.
The theme of this season was a constant one of subservient egos to the cause. Udonis Haslem went from starting in the Finals to playing a minute, 34 seconds in Game 7.
"We're all about the ring, and doing it with class, and that's what separates this team from every other one in professional sports,'' Battier said.
"Winning back-to-back (titles) is special,'' Wade said. "Winning back-to-back-to-back would be out of this world."
There is a line at the end of the movie, Defending Your Life, where the celestial judges have to decide if his actions warrant moving on to heaven. They're shown a clip of him.
"Good enough for you?" his lawyer asks.
This had to be good enough for everyone. The doubts go. The questions fade. There will remain basketball questions, game-to-game and season-to-season. But the big ones about this team's make-up – is LeBron clutch? – get thrown in the air with the confetti.
Over the past two months and again Monday, the loudest noise sports can make matched their every move. Now comes a different noise in their wake, one that tells of their greatest accomplishment.
Finally, do you hear the silence?