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3 former Miami Heat players in a NBA "Most Hated Players" list

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One player is easy to guess, but the infamous list includes a Heat icon and a legend on defense.

Miami Heat v New Jersey Nets - East QF Game 3 Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The love/hate saga fills the NBA career of LeBron James. A recent piece includes him in the Miami Heat heritage as part of a “Most Hated” list.

Hated by: Opposing fans, entire city of Cleveland

Why? The hate for LeBron has diminished since his return to Cleveland, but during his tenure with the Heat you'd be hard-pressed to find an NBA fan outside of South Florida who didn't despise him.

Okay, some Heat fans would join the Cavaliers bandwagon today. The article refers to how creating Miami's "Big 3" created a media frenzy Miami hasn't been able to duplicate since then, maybe until now.

The another "Most Hated" Heat player is none other than the ultra-competitive Alonzo Mourning.

Hated by: Opposing fans, opposing players

Why? Mourning's intensity on the court was second to none, and it often rubbed his opponents the wrong way. He did nothing to discourage this reputation when, later in his career as a member of the Heat, he got into a well-publicized brawl with former Hornets teammate Larry Johnson.

Mourning received only a hate scale of 7, which is tame compared to Bill Laimbeer, who had the dubious distinction of topping the charts.

Hated by: Opposing fans, players, possibly his own mother

Why? Sound the alarm, the Hate Meter is at an all-time high. Laimbeer is arguably the most universally hated player in NBA history -- his dirty play, constant complaining and general arrogance seems to have rubbed everyone the wrong way. It worked for the Pistons, however, as Laimbeer helped lead them to back-to-back titles in 1989 and 1990.

Former Heat member Bruce Bowen also made the cut, but due to his style of play rather than personality issues.

Hated by: Opposing players, opposing fans

Why? Bowen helped pave the way for the "3-and-D guy" in the modern NBA, and boy did players hate matching up with him. Not only did Bowen make opponents' lives a living hell on the defensive end, but he also was repeatedly accused of intentionally trying to injure players by sliding under their feet as they landed after jump shots.

Who on today's Heat team can make other cities envious of Miami's success? When the Heat won a championship, other teams only objective was to destroy the alpha dog that was the Miami Heat.

My opinion three players have the tolerance to overcome hate and inspire a city to reach for the ultimate prize.


UDONIS HASLEM


JAMES JOHNSON


DION WAITERS


Statistics measure box-score performance. The list of players mentioned above include guys who thrived in the face of doubters and brought their teams a championship.

Those players had only one goal: to have a victory parade for their city in the face of overwhelming criticism. They had the singular quality of meeting adversity head-on and overcoming it. Will this team do the same?