clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Five Stars: 2011-12

New, comment

Miami’s second NBA Championship season

Dallas Mavericks v Miami Heat - Game One
That’s Five Stars right there
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

In Miami’s 22nd NBA season, the Big Three would lead the Heat to their second title and their second Finals appearance in their two seasons together.

Due to a labor dispute, the NBA regular season did not get underway until Christmas Day, when in one of five games on the slate, the Heat defeated the Dallas Mavericks by a 105-94 final in a rematch of the prior season’s NBA title series. Over a 66 game regular season, the Heat put together four separate win streaks of at least five games, including a nine game streak which culminated in a 107-93 win against the Portland Trail Blazers on March 1st. After claiming the Southeast Division title with a 46-20 record, the Heat earned the second seed in the postseason.

Miami defeated their one-time nemesis New York Knicks in five games to open the playoffs before winning in six against the Indiana Pacers and seven versus the Boston Celtics. The Oklahoma City Thunder were no match for the winning machine from South Beach, dropping the NBA Finals in five games.

First Star

LeBron James 1976.9

James won both the NBA and the NBA Finals MVP for his efforts in his second season in Miami. He earned Player of the Week accolades six times and was the Player of the Month in both January and February. He led the league with a 30.7 PER, 14.5 regular season Win Shares, a 7.6 VORP, and a nearly incomprehensible NBA leading Box Plus/Minus of 11.0 (only the fourth best mark of his career). He also led the Heat with an NBA-third 32.0% usage rate.

James played in and started 62 games for Miami at small forward, although he found himself at each of the other four positions as coach Erik Spoelstra dictated and the Heat gravitated to a small lineup. He led the team with an NBA-10th 2,326 regular season minutes, or 37.5 per game. His NBA-second 1,683 total points (NBA third 27.1) led the team by over 600 points, and nearly equalled the collective output of the Second and Third Star.

James also lead the team with 492 rebounds (7.9 per game), 387 assists (6.2 per game), and 115 steals (an NBA-third 1.9 per game). His .531 field goal percentage was the highest of his career to that point, on 621-of-1169 shooting, and he also improved his three-point touch to a then-career best .362 on 54-of-149 attempts. His .771 free throw percentage was just nine points off his career best, as he sunk 387-of-502 through the season. Long story short, I think that the 2011-12 season represented the first season of James’ three-year career peak, as his numbers got better yet in the immediately subsequent seasons.

James had 23 double-doubles for the Heat through the season, and scored 20 or more points 50 times. In Miami’s Christmas Day win against the Mavs, he scored 37 points in 36 minutes, making 11-of-19 shots and pitching in with 10 rebounds, six assists, two blocks and two steals. On January 4th, he lit up the Pacers for 33 points and 13 assists, with eight rebounds and two steals in a 118-83 Heat victory. His best game of a formidably great season came on the Heat’s March 1st win over the Blazers, when he scored 38 points on 13-of-22 shooting, making both of his three-point attempts and adding 11 rebounds, six helpers, and five steals. On April 4th, in a 98-93 win against the Oklahoma City Thunder, he scored 34 points with 10 assists, seven boards and four steals.

James’ numbers didn’t tail off in the playoffs as they had the prior season, as he earned a 30.3 PER and avereaged 25.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 1.6 steals in 42.7 minutes per game. On May 20th, in Miami’s 101-93 Game Four victory over the Pacers, James scored 40 points with 18 rebounds, nine assists, two steals and two blocks, narrowly missing a very impressive triple-double. In Miami’s 98-79 win against the Celtics in Game Six on June 7th, James scored 45 points with 15 rebounds and five assists.

Second Star

Dwyane Wade 1221.0

Wade got rocked pretty hard by the sore-knee fairy in his ninth NBA season, but played his way into the Five Stars for the ninth time anyway. He played in and started 49 times for Miami at shooting guard, ranking fourth on the team with 1,625 minutes, fifth with 237 rebounds, second with 225 assists, third with 82 steals, and second with 63 blocked shots.

Wade made 416-of-837 shots from the field (.497) and 15-of-56 from three-point distance (.268), draining 235-of-297 from the foul stripe (.791). He averaged 33.2 minutes, a team-second 22.1 points, 4.8 rebounds, a team-second 4.6 assists, a team-second 1.7 steals, and a team-leading 1.3 blocks per game.

Wade was second on the Heat with a 26.3 PER, a 31.3% usage rate, 7.7 Win Shares, and 3.4 VORP. He had four double-doubles and scored 20 or more points 32 times. On January 27th, Wade scored 28 points on 11-of-19 shooting, with five steals, four assists, two blocks and two rebounds as Miami topped the Knicks, 99-89. On February 21st, in a 120-108 victory over the Sacramento Kings, he made 11-of-16 from the field with 10 assists, four boards, three steals and two blocks. He scored 30 points on 12-of-19 shooting with six assists, six rebounds, and three steals in a 113-101 win against the Toronto Raptors on March 30th.

Through the postseason, Wade averaged 39.4 minutes, 20.8 points, 4.8 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.5 steals, and 1.2 blocks. On May 24th, in Miami’s Game Six series clinching 105-93 win over the Pacers, Wade sunk 17-of-25 shots from the field and finished with 41 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals.

Third Star

Chris Bosh 915.4

Bosh appeared in 57 games for the Heat in 2011-12 through the regular season, starting each of them at power forward. He ranked second on the team with 2,007 minutes, third with 452 rebounds and 1,025 points, fourth with 45 blocked shots, and fifth with 103 assists and 51 steals.

Bosh’s 18.9 PER value was a distant third to James’ and Wades’ figures, although the three posted the only “above average” ratings on the club. Bosh made 393-of-807 shots from the field (.487) and 10-of-35 from outside (.286), sinking 229-of-279 free throws (.821).

Bosh scored 18.0 points per game for the Heat in a team-second 35.2 minutes. He pulled down a team-high tying 7.9 boards with 1.8 helpers, 0.9 steals and 0.8 blocks. He also ranked third on the team with a 24.2% usage rate and 6.9 Win Shares, but only placed fifth with a 1.0 VORP.

Bosh earned his seventh straight All Star game appearance and appeared at the Third Star position for the second season in second tries. He earned 11 double-doubles and scored 20 or more points 22 times. On January 21st, he made 11-of-19 shots from the field and totaled 30 points with seven rebounds, five assists and two rejections as Miami topped the Philadelphia 76ers by a 113-92 final count. Three days later, he had his best game of the season with a season-high 35 points, with seven rebounds and two assists in a Miami win against the Cleveland Cavaliers, 92-85. On March 30th, in Miami’s win against Toronto, he scored 30 with eight boards, three blocks and three assists.

Bosh played every game in the postseason’s first and final series, but only appeared four times through the second and third round due to injury. He saved his best for last, scoring 24 points on nine-of-14 shooting with seven boards and two blocks in Miami’s Game Five, series-clinching 121-106 win over the Thunder. He averaged 14.0 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.0 blocks with a 19.7 PER in 14 games overall.

Fourth Star

Mario Chalmers 671.8

Chalmers played in 64 games for the Heat, ranking second on the team to Shane Battier’s 65 appearances and started all of them at point guard. He was third on the club with 1,825 minutes on the floor and shot .448 from the field (223-of-498) and .388 from deep (101-of-260), with a .792 success rate from the stripe (80-of-101).

Chalmers totaled 627 points for Miami, ranking a distant fourth to the Big Three. He had 171 rebounds, a team-third 222 assists, a team-second 97 steals, and 11 blocked shots. His 13.0 PER was also fourth on the team as was his 4.3 Win Shares. He had a team-third 1.5 VORP and a 17.4% usage rate.

Chalmers played 28.5 minutes per game, and averaged 9.8 points, 3.5 assists, 2.7 rebounds, and 1.5 steals. He finished in double figures 33 times. He had his best game of the season on January 5th, by scoring a season-high 29 points with eight assists, seven rebounds, three steals and even a blocked shot in a 116-109, three-overtime victory over the Atlanta Hawks.

Fifth Star

Udonis Haslem 440.4

Haslem had his seventh Five Star season in 2011-12, and did more than his part in a supporting role to help Miami earn their second NBA title. He played in 64 games for the Heat, appearing in all but 10 contests off the bench. He was fifth on the club with 1,589 minutes played, and scored 385 points with a team-second 470 rebounds, 42 assists, 35 steals, and 24 blocked shots.

Haslem played just over a half a night (24.8 minutes), and averaged more rebounds (7.3) than points (6.0). Never an advanced stat stud, Haslem posted his lowest PER to date with a mark of 10.9, with a 13.5% usage rate, and 3.5 Win Shares. He made 151-of-357 field goals and 83-of-102 free throws (.423 and .814 respectively.)

Haslem came up with four double-doubles to bolster the Heat through the regular season, and finished in double figures 11 times. On January 13th, in a 117-104 win against the Denver Nuggets, he came off the bench and scored 12 points with 11 rebounds in 27 minutes. On February 7th, he scored 14 points with eight rebounds in a victory against the Cleveland Cavaliers, 107-91. In Miami’s win against Portland on March 1st, he scored 11 points with a season high 14 rebounds.

Haslem maintained his level of play through the postseason, with an average PER of 10.6 through his 22 appearances. He averaged just 4.8 points with 6.4 rebounds. On June 3rd, he scored a dozen points and crashed the boards for 17 rebounds in Miami’s Game Four, 93-91 loss to the Boston Celtics.

Haslem has stayed on with the Heat in the four years since that 2012 championship, appearing in 220 games and playing 15.1 minutes a night. He recently signed a one-year deal to stay on with the Heat through the 2016-17 season for his record-setting 14th Miami season. He currently sits 41 games behind franchise record holder Dwyane Wade with 814 career appearances, and stands a good shot at passing Father Prime this season.

The Rest

Shane Battier 399.2

Joel Anthony 315.5

Mike Miller 248.3

Bonus Mike Miller highlight reel.

Norris Cole 225.1

James Jones 158.1

Ronny Turiaf 69.3

Dexter Pittman 58.8

Terrel Harris 47.7

Juwan Howard 18.1

Eddy Durry 6.3

Mickell Gladness 0.9

The Big Three machine wasn’t done in Miami yet, not by a long shot. Check back here later this week as we continue to review Miami’s retroactive Five Star history with their third NBA title season, 2012-13.