2005–06 Miami Heat season
The 2005–06 Miami Heat season was the 18th National Basketball Association season for the Miami Heat basketball franchise. During the offseason, the Heat acquired Jason Williams and James Posey from the Memphis Grizzlies, and All-Star forward Antoine Walker from the Boston Celtics, while signing free agent All-Star point guard Gary Payton. Early into the season, after a 15-12 start to the year, head coach Stan Van Gundy resigned, citing the desire to spend more time with his family, and Pat Riley resume coaching the Heat. The Heat went 39-23 the rest of the way, finishing with a 52-30 record, good enough for first place in the Southeast Division and second place in the Eastern Conference overall. Dwyane Wade and Shaquille O'Neal were both selected for the 2006 NBA All-Star Game.
|2005–06 Miami Heat season|
|Head coach||Stan Van Gundy and Pat Riley|
|Place||Division: 1st (Southeast)|
Conference: 2nd (Eastern)
|Playoff finish||NBA Champions |
(Defeated Mavericks 4–2)
|Television||FSN Florida, Sun Sports|
In the first round of the playoffs, the Heat defeated the Chicago Bulls in six games, and the New Jersey Nets in five games in the semifinals to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals against the Detroit Pistons in a rematch of last year's playoffs. After splitting the first two games of the series, the Heat defeated the Pistons in six games to advance to the NBA Finals for the first time in franchise history, where they faced the Dallas Mavericks. After losing the first two games of the series, the Heat recovered to win the next four games and the first ever championship in franchise history. The team was nicknamed "15 Strong".
- In August 2005, Shaquille O'Neal signed a 5-year-extension with the Heat for $100 million. Supporters applauded O'Neal's willingness to take what amounted to a pay cut, and the Heat's decision to secure O'Neal's services for the long term. They contend that O'Neal was worth more than $20 million per year, particularly given that considerably less valuable players earn almost the same amount. Critics, however, questioned the wisdom of the move, characterizing it as overpaying an aging and often injured player.
- On August 2, 2005, the Heat were involved in one of the largest trades in NBA history. It was a five-team trade which included the Heat, the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets, the Memphis Grizzlies, the Boston Celtics, and the Utah Jazz. The Heat traded Rasual Butler to the Hornets, Eddie Jones to the Grizzlies, and Albert Miralles, Qyntel Woods, a 2006 2nd round draft pick, and a 2008 2nd round draft pick to the Celtics. In return, the Heat received Antoine Walker from the Celtics, Andre Emmett, James Posey, and Jason Williams from the Grizzlies, and Roberto Dueñas from the Hornets. Walker would be a reliable bench player during the season. Posey and Williams would be starters at small forward and point guard, respectively. Emmett would be waived on October 31, while Dueñas would not sign with the team.
On the same day, the Heat would sign Kasib Powell. He would sign with the Chicago Bulls on September 29, and the Bulls waived him on November 2. Powell may not have played on the Heat during the season, but would join the team two seasons later.
- On August 12, the Heat signed Gerald Fitch. Fitch would be traded to the Houston Rockets on February 23 for Derek Anderson.
- On August 15, the Heat signed Matt Walsh. Walsh would be waived on November 18.
- On September 22, the Heat signed Hall-of-Famer Gary Payton. Payton would play his final two seasons in the NBA with the Heat.
- On October 3, the Heat signed Jason Kapono.
- On October 8, the Heat signed Earl Barron.
|1||29||Wayne Simien||Forward||United States||Kansas|
Miami Heat roster
- In the second game of the 2005–06 season, O'Neal injured his right ankle and subsequently missed the following 18 games. Many critics stated that Heat coach Pat Riley correctly managed O'Neal during the rest of the season, limiting his minutes to a career low. Riley felt doing so would allow O'Neal to be healthier and fresher come playoff time. Although O'Neal averaged career (or near-career) lows in points, rebounds, and blocks, he said in an interview "Stats don't matter. I care about winning, not stats. If I score 0 points and we win I'm happy. If I score 50, 60 points, break the records, and we lose, I'm pissed off. 'Cause I knew I did something wrong. I'll have a hell of a season if I win the championship and average 20 points a game." During the 2005–06 season, the Heat recorded only a .500 record without O'Neal in the line-up.
- During the 2005 off-season, it was widely speculated Pat Riley was attempting to run Van Gundy out of his coaching job and take over the job himself, as the team was in a position to contend for the championship. Van Gundy would resign from his position as head coach on December 12, 2005, just 21 games into the season, citing a need to spend more time with his family. Riley replaced him as head coach, and led Miami to their first championship that same season.
In Shaquille O'Neal's book, "Shaq Uncut: My Story", O'Neal responded to allegations of being a "coach killer" and that he forced Van Gundy out of Miami by stating: "Stan got fired because Pat (Riley) wanted to take over, not because I wanted him out. I had no control over it — not a smidgen of control. We all kind of knew it was coming because Pat and Stan were always arguing. Pat would come down and tell Stan how to do something and Stan would want to do it his own way, and that was a fine game plan if you wanted to get yourself fired."
- On April 11, 2006, Shaquille O'Neal recorded his second career triple-double against the Toronto Raptors with 15 points, 11 rebounds and a career high 10 assists.
Record vs. opponentsEdit
|2005-06 NBA Records|
|New Orleans/Oklahoma City||1–1||0–2||2–0||1–1||0–2||0–4||1–2||0–2||2–1||3–1||0–2||2–1||1–3||3–1||1–1||1–1||2–1||0–2||—||2–0||1–1||1–1||1–3||3–1||2–2||1–3||3–1||2–0||1–3||1–1|
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field-goal percentage||3P%||3-point field-goal percentage||FT%||Free-throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game|
* Statistics include only games with the Heat
* Statistics include only games with the Heat
2006 NBA PlayoffsEdit
Heat clinched a 2 seed at the Eastern Conference for the 2006 NBA Playoffs.
|2006 playoff game log|
First Round: 4–2 (Home: 3–0; Road: 1–2)
Conference Semifinals: 4–1 (Home: 2–1; Road: 2–0)
Conference Finals: 4–2 (Home: 3–0; Road: 1–2)
NBA Finals: 4–2 (Home: 3–0; Road: 1–2)
|2006 playoff schedule|
2006 NBA FinalsEdit
Dallas' Jason Terry scored a playoff-high 32 points as the Mavericks overcame a 31–23 deficit at the end of the first quarter.
|Miami Heat 80, Dallas Mavericks 90|
|Scoring by quarter: 31–23, 13–23, 24–24, 12–20|
|Pts: Dwyane Wade 28
Rebs: Udonis Haslem 8
Asts: Dwyane Wade 6
|Pts: Jason Terry 32|
Rebs: Josh Howard 12
Asts: Nowitzki, Howard 4 each
|Dallas leads series, 1–0.|
Dirk Nowitzki had a stellar 26 point-16 rebound performance, and the Mavericks cruised past the Heat to take a 2–0 series lead.
|Miami Heat 85, Dallas Mavericks 99|
|Scoring by quarter: 17–18, 17–32, 24–32, 27–17|
|Pts: Dwyane Wade 23
Rebs: Dwyane Wade 8
Asts: Payton, Williams 4 each
|Pts: Dirk Nowitzki 26|
Rebs: Dirk Nowitzki 16
Asts: Jason Terry 9
|Dallas leads series, 2–0.|
Led by Dwyane Wade's 42 points and 13 rebounds, the Heat rallied from a 13-point deficit with six minutes to go in the fourth quarter. The momentum-changing comeback was capped by a Gary Payton field goal from just inside the three-point line with 9.3 seconds left.
|Dallas Mavericks 96, Miami Heat 98|
|Scoring by quarter: 21–29, 22–23, 34–16, 19–30|
|Pts: Dirk Nowitzki 30
Rebs: Erick Dampier 9
Asts: Jason Terry 5
|Pts: Dwyane Wade 42|
Rebs: Dwyane Wade 13
Asts: Shaquille O'Neal 5
|Dallas leads series, 2–1.|
Dwyane Wade shined again for the Heat with 36 points, and Miami held Dallas to just seven points in the fourth quarter en route to a series-tying, blowout victory. The Mavericks' low-scoring fourth quarter was the lowest ever by any team during the NBA Finals. Jerry Stackhouse caught Shaquille O'Neal with a flagrant foul that resulted in him being suspended for Game 5.
|Dallas Mavericks 74, Miami Heat 98|
|Scoring by quarter: 25–30, 19–24, 23–24, 7–20|
|Pts: Jason Terry 17
Rebs: Dirk Nowitzki 9
Asts: Jerry Stackhouse 4
|Pts: Dwyane Wade 36|
Rebs: Shaquille O'Neal 13
Asts: Jason Williams 6
|Miami ties series, 2–2.|
Making a strong case for NBA Finals MVP, Wade was the star yet again with 43 points shooting as many free throws as all the Mavericks combined, leading the Heat to their third straight win over Dallas after being down 0–2 in the series. After a controversial play in which Mavericks owner Mark Cuban thought Wade committed a backcourt violation, Wade hit the game-winning free throws with 1.9 seconds left, and also made the shot that sent the game into overtime. He set an NBA Finals record for most made free-throws in a game with 21. The NBA, upon further review of the play, deemed that the officials made the correct call, and that there was no backcourt violation committed.
After the game, Dirk Nowitzki kicked a ball into the stands and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban caused many "acts of misconduct" resulting in both of them being fined $5,000 and $250,000 respectively.
|Dallas Mavericks 100, Miami Heat 101 (OT)|
|Scoring by quarter: 21–24, 30–19, 20–27, 22–23, Overtime: 7–8|
|Pts: Jason Terry 35
Rebs: Josh Howard 10
Asts: Marquis Daniels 4
|Pts: Dwyane Wade 43|
Rebs: Shaquille O'Neal 12
Asts: Wade, Williams 4 each
|Miami leads series, 3–2.|
Behind Dwyane Wade's 36 points, Miami edged Dallas to win their first championship in franchise history. Averaging 34.7 points per game in the championship series, Wade was named NBA Finals MVP (Most Valuable Player).
|Miami Heat 95, Dallas Mavericks 92|
|Scoring by quarter: 23–30, 26–18, 22–20, 24–24|
|Pts: Dwyane Wade 36
Rebs: Shaquille O'Neal 12
Asts: Jason Williams 7
|Pts: Dirk Nowitzki 29|
Rebs: Dirk Nowitzki 12
Asts: Jason Terry 5
|Miami wins series, 4–2.|
- Shaquille O'Neal, NBA leader in field goal percentage
- He joined Wilt Chamberlain as the only two players in league history to lead the league in field goal percentage nine times.
- Shaquille O'Neal, All-NBA First Team
- Dwyane Wade, NBA All-Star Skills Challenge Champion
- Dwyane Wade, All-NBA Second Team
- Dwyane Wade, NBA Finals MVP
- Dwyane Wade, Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year
NBA All-Star Game
- Dwyane Wade, NBA All-Star Game Appearance
- Shaquille O'Neal, NBA All-Star Appearance
- "Heat coach Van Gundy resigns; Riley returns". sports.espn.go.com. Retrieved October 23, 2015.
- O'Neal, S.; MacMullan, J. (2011). Shaq Uncut: My Story. Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 9781455504428. Retrieved October 23, 2015.
- usatoday.com, No backcourt violation on winning possession, NBA says, accessed May 5, 2007.
- espn.com, Cuban fined $250K for actions after Game 5, accessed May 5, 2007.