Originally Posted by rserina
First of all, I never said it was an act of genius. But tell me how many other teams have tried to go "positionless." Rivers couldn't do it and that's one of the reasons Allen left.
Second, the 2010-11 team was very ill-fitting. Your two best players (James and Wade) were both ball dominating wings who can't spot up. You had very little floor spacing at all because the fives (Anthony, Dampier, Ilgauskus) had limited range and were fairly to terribly slow footed. Your third and fourth best players were both fours, neither being a good rebounder or ball screen defender. They desperately needed a point guard who could shoot, which is why they made Bibby their starter after picking him up midseason. That team was ill-conceived and ill-fitting and lost when it faced a team in Dallas with the offensive balance to expose mismatches and the presence around the rim to defend the finishing abilities of James and Wade.
Then last year they failed to upgrade their two weakest positions (one, five) and brought another wing in Battier while returning one from injury in Miller, giving them a surplus of twos, threes, and fours. Spoelstra did a great job in my opinion of convincing that frontline of Bosh, James, and Battier what "positionless" responsibilities would mean for them and it resulted in a pretty impressive championship run, despite injuries to two of its three best players.
What you are talking about are issues involving personnel and their individual limitations and not necessarily the system that was being employed.
My opinion has been that the NBA has effectively been "positionless" since pretty much the mid '90s. Once the great center run of the '80s and early '90s guys were gone. The league has revolved around the pick and roll. Which means you have to have a top notch ball handler (could be a PG but not necessary). You need a athletic/versatile big man that can knock down an 18 footer. And you need a dependable outside shooter. Now preferably the outside shooter is 6'6+ more for defensive purposes.
is that a universal rule? no, of course not. But the point is that many teams have been successful without utilizing traditional personnel/positional uses.
Offensive systems are designed to create mismatches. When you have LeBron James on your team, I don't care who else you have. You automatically have a mismatch and a HUGE one at that. Dwayne Wade is another player that gives you a advantages in mismatches. They don't have to be "PGs" just guys who can create mismatches and make good decisions. Again, it doesn't have to be a traditional PG.
I think this whole "postionless" label is basically ridiculous to be honest with you. When you have 2 guys that are natural on the ball mismatch creators and argubly the best pick and roll 4 man in the NBA. You're going to be really good not matter what. I don't care what system you play or what you want to call it.
Kind of like the triangle offense. That "system" is really easy to look good considering the cast of players that you have had running it.
Jordan and Pippen
Bryant and Shaq
Bryant and Gasol
all hall of famers and 3 of those 5 are considered top 10 all time NBA players. So what is it really? The system or that fact that you had great players in the primes of their careers running it?
As for the Heat. The only real differences between year 1 and year 2 were defensive improvements in the surrounding cast, more dependable outside shooting, and the fact that LeBron didn't defer to Wade down the stretch in year 2.
The Heat were at their best last year when James had the ball and every one just got the hell out of the way. There was nothing really that complicated about it. That's why I said it didn't take genius.