Forget Chris Bosh for a minute, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade playing together through their prime years are going to be a lethal duo which should have an NBA title within their grasp each year pending any bad luck or karma dished out by the basketball gods.
Still, I can't help but think if the do indeed win an NBA title it won't be as sweet as the trio imagines. If they end up rattling off a few championships, it's only a matter of time before LeBron wonders what it would feel like to win one as the only alpha dog. Until he does that I think I'll refer to him as LeBron Horry, because Horry's 7 rings with 3 different teams don't put him in any conversations about the best players in NBA history.
Listening to Reggie Miller and Charles Barkley, two ring-less former NBA superstars, after LeBron's decision was interesting and revealed a generation gap with hoop stars. Both Barkley and Reggie thought a title as sidekick with Bosh and Wade wouldn't be as sweet as if he had won a championship in Cleveland. Reggie thought 3 or 4 titles in Miami would be the equivalent of 1 title in Cleveland. Reggie never ended up chasing a championship despite the temptations and Barkley tried to with Houston but it was too late in his career, similar to Karl Malone and Gary Payton with the Lakers. But they wouldn't have it any other way.
LeBron and Bosh are part of the AAU generation where the best players seek each other out to create super-teams in various regions of the U.S. Miami is now that super-team, assuming they can gather enough players willing to play for a ring and the minimum salary.
So how does this impact the Indiana Pacers?
Well, there won't be any super-teams forming in the near future in Indy. It helps that Cleveland will likely join the also rans of the Eastern Conference and put another playoff spot in play. On the other hand, Miami was always a draw at the Fieldhouse with Wade alone. Obviously they'll still sell out and the tickets scalpers will make their yearly quota thanks to the demand. But Cleveland with LeBron always filled the Fieldhouse twice a year and now that draw is gone. With all of the penny pinching going on at the Fieldhouse, losing a couple of overflow crowds (not to mention the great show LeBron and Co. would put on) will hurt in the short term.