Heat motivated to ‘Win another title’
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
MIAMI — Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra came to training camp prepared with at least one theme for the 2012-13 season.
“I’m not going to use the word repeat,” he said Friday at the Heat’s media day, just before the team begins practice Saturday. “We have an opportunity to win another title. … Being around winning teams and two championship teams, I have a deep-seated respect for how hard it is. It’s hard to win one. Everyone will be gunning for us this year. Teams have loaded up. They’re primed and ready to take on the championship. …
“You have to love that. It’s a different challenge for us this year. … This is a completely new journey.”
For all the grief the Heat took for celebrating in the summer of 2010 after forming the talented triumvirate of LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, Spoelstra is doing what he can to distance the team from last season’s championship.
It might simply be parsing words, but Spoelstra’s message is clear: Last season is not this season, and whatever obstacles the Heat had — they trailed in each of their final three series on their way to the championship in 2011-12 — the challenges will be new and different this season.
Spoelstra is fond of latching on to words and phrases, and he has a another one to describe the opportunity that awaits the Heat this season: invigorating.
“We know how difficult it is to start from that starting line and try to climb that mountain,” he said. “We’re looking forward to the challenge. There will be a lot of intrigue during the regular season.
“How do we respond to the success? Will it be as motivating and powerful a teacher as the pain and failure of the year before? I love that because we’ll find out more about ourselves in this new journey.”
The Heat didn’t sit idly this offseason while other teams, such as the Los Angeles Lakers, with their additions of center Dwight Howard and guard Steve Nash, made improvements. Miami added former Boston Celtics guard Ray Allen and former Washington Wizards forward Rashard … [For more on Heat motivated to 'repeat'? 'Win another title' more like it, click here.]