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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Pat Riley is surprised people hate the Heat so much, says it was tough to overcome

Most people understand why everyone hates the Miami Heat. For starters, they’re good. They brought together some of the league’s best superstars and so far have accomplished exactly what they set out to accomplish with a trip to the Finals followed by an NBA championship. Then, there’s LeBron James. People hated LeBron long before “The Decision,” but that charade put him among the most hated athletes of all time. Dwyane Wade’s childlike antics at times this season haven’t helped either. Pat Riley, however, doesn’t understand where all the hatred came from.

“The unexpected was the absolute national, I think, disdain,” Riley said during an interview with Dan LeBatard on 790 The Ticket in Miami. “That was surprising. I was on a team that people loved and hated and coached it in L.A. I coached against a number of teams, like the Celtics and Detroit that there was the same kind of national disdain.

“But in today’s modern age, when you put together a team like this with these kinds of players who are really good people — LeBron and Chris and Dwyane, these are good people. … I think that’s the one unexpected and I think it was such a heavy weight on our guys … that it really created a tremendous amount of angst.”

Pat must be forgetting about the Three Kings intro party that was held in South Beach and LeBron’s famous “not one, not two, not three, not 15” speech. Is all of the hate warranted? Hardly, but Riley has been around long enough that it shouldn’t surprise him one bit. Like Chris Bosh said last season, hating Miami is the cool thing to do.

H/T Sports Radio Interviews
Photo Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

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