After the announcement of the NBA concerning the withdrawal of the number 6 of Bill Russell through the whole of the League, one can ask questions in relation to certain particular cases. Example: the Heat, where a certain LeBron James carried out madness with #6 on his back for four seasons. How is Miami going to honor the King? The answer is just below.
The NBA had never offered such a tribute to one of its legends. We are therefore in an unprecedented situation and in the case of the Miami Heat, we wondered if the Florida franchise was going to withdraw number 6 twice, once to honor the icon Bill Russell like all the 29 other NBA teams, and once to salute the huge contribution of the King between 2010 and 2014. Obviously, this is going the way. Indeed, according to Ira Winderman of South Florida Sun Sentinel, the Florida franchise plans to withdraw #6 a second time when James hangs up the sneakers (see you in 2030). Having two of the same numbers retired in a single franchise may seem paradoxical, but know that this is not a first in the NBA. FYI, this is also the case with the Knicks and Blazers. On the New York side, #15 is retired in honor of both Earl Monroe and Dick McGuire, while in Portland #30 is retired in honor of Terry Porter and Bob Gross. Also note that several NBA franchises had already retired the number 6 before the NBA decided to honor Bill Russell, namely the Celtics of course, but also the Spurs (Avery Johnson), the Sixers (Julius Erving), the Suns ( Walter Davis), the Magic and the Kings (in honor of the sixth man aka the public). We are therefore in the opposite situation to that of the Miami Heat with LeBron, but in the end there will logically be two #6s hanging from the ceiling in these teams. And to return to the Florida franchise, it will be an additional “oddness” after the retirement of #23 Michael Jordan, who never wore the Miami jersey, and #13 Dan Marino, legendary… NFL quarterback who spent his entire career with the Miami Dolphins.
LeBron in Miami:
4x All Star
4x First Team All-NBA
Hall of Fame resumes in a 4 year span. pic.twitter.com/oBOzJLI2Yj
— StatMuse (@statmuse) August 12, 2022
Despite the questions that could therefore surround LeBron’s jersey retirement in Miami, his contribution to the Heat is indisputable. The King only spent four seasons in Florida, but that may have been the period when LeBron played his best basketball of his career. Two MVP titles won, two Finals MVP titles and two championship rings, all that in 2012 and 2013, in other words, he won absolutely everything at that time alongside Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. He was both in his prime athletic, more confident in his outside shooting compared to previous years, while possessing the maturity and experience to guide his team to the top. In short, a monster among monsters. So if Wade will remain as the true face of the Florida franchise, the latter has witnessed an absolutely all-time combination of power, versatility and efficiency that we may never see again. All that to say that the number 6 worn by LeBron must – one way or another – end up on the ceiling of the Heat room alongside those of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Alonzo Mourning, Shaquille O’Neal, Tim Hardaway and therefore Bill Russell.
If you were one of those who couldn’t sleep following this problem of LeBron James’ jersey removal in Miami, you’re probably relieved. We can’t wait to see what the Pacers will do with their own legend Lance Stephenson, also wearing number 6.
Text source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel
ICYMI: NBA to retire No. 6 (Bill Russell), with Heat expected to retire it again (LeBron James) https://t.co/TmErKiE7DG
—Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) August 12, 2022