During a recent group discussion, former NBA star Gilbert Arenas acknowledged that his efforts to defeat Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat were next to impossible.
On his “Gil’s Arena” podcast, Arenas offered a blunt but honest assessment (at the 38:35 mark) about the chances of his Washington Wizards team capturing the Southeast Division over the Heat.
“We was nice, we just didn’t win the division,” Arenas first remarked.
After a brief discussion of the top teams in the Wizards’ division, Arenas then noted the difficulty in getting past Wade’s Heat teams.
“No, we had Miami,” Arenas said. “I’m pretty sure Miami was in our division. Yeah, I couldn’t beat Wade for s—.”
Arenas spent the first two seasons of his NBA career with the Golden State Warriors before signing with the Wizards in 2003 as a free agent. Despite Arenas developing into a superstar and never lacking in confidence, his supporting cast with the Wizards wasn’t enough to get past teams like the Heat and Orlando Magic.
From 2004 to 2008, the Wizards reached the postseason each time, finishing in second place in their respective division in each of those four seasons. Despite winning over 40 games each time, the Wizards only managed to win one playoff series.
In that first season, the Heat captured the division with a 59-23 record, 14 games better than the second-place Wizards. The following year, the Heat finished with a 52-30 record, holding a 10-game edge over the Wizards and eventually winning the NBA title.
For the 2006-07 season, the Wizards had their best chance to topple the Heat, finishing just three games behind with a 41-41 record. In that final season of the four-year stretch, it was the Orlando Magic who the Wizards were unable to defeat for the division title.
During each of those final two seasons, injuries to Wade had a serious effect on the Heat’s ability to win. That became especially true during the 2007-08 campaign, when a nagging knee injury abruptly ended his season.
Arenas’ chances to get past the more potent teams in the Wizards’ division truly evaporated from that point. Off-the court woes and injuries eventually caused the Wizards to fall apart, with Arenas eventually playing elsewhere.
Of course, even without those issues, the likelihood of Arenas and the Wizards getting past the Heat was remote. That’s because wade was joined by LeBron James and Chris Bosh, which led to four consecutive Eastern Conference titles.
Coming up short against Wade is something many players experienced during their careers. Yet, it appears that Arenas’ frustration with that fact is something that he still thinks about.