Five Reasons the Miami Heat’s 2016-17 Season Was a Success

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2.  A Strong, Irreplaceable Brotherhood Was Formed

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“It was like a movie or something,” said Whiteside, looking back on Miami’s season.

Though Miami lost out on a chance to prove itself in the playoffs, what it gained was perhaps more valuable than that. Each and every member of the Heat gained an unbreakable bond of brotherhood over the season.

“I’ve played for a dozen pro teams, had hundreds of teammates,” Whiteside told reporters after the Heat’s final game. “You all know my story, I’ve been all around the world, and this is definitely one of my favorites, if not my favorite (team). Sometimes you got one or two guys that you’re really close with, but with this, the whole team was like that. Everybody just gelled well.”

Coach Spoelstra, who’s been bounced from the NBA Finals twice in the past (in 2011 and 2014) seemed more upset at the end result of the 2016-17 season than any other before:

 “I don’t know if I’ve ever felt this way about a team before, or wanted something more for a team,” Spoelstra said in his final presser of the season.

Even Heat Lifer Udonis Haslem — who’s seen it all in this league — said this group of guys in 2016-17 was particularly special. Despite his infamous tough-guy image, Haslem reportedly even cried when it was all said and done:

“This has probably been one of the more enjoyable rides for me,” Haslem said after Miami was bounced from playoff contention on Wednesday. “I’ve been on some championship teams but, for me, this is probably the most fun team I’ve had the opportunity to play on.”

Next: The Heat’s ‘Long-Term’ Core Looks Very Promising

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Grant is a life-long Miami Heat fan hailing from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. His earliest Heat memories involve Eddie Jones going off on opponents and hoping he'd become the next Michael Jordan. When that didn't pan out, a guy named Dwyane Wade came to Miami and Grant's fandom turned to obsession. He graduated with an English degree from the University of Central Florida and currently resides in Los Angeles.