Publish date:

Pat Riley Compares "Big Three" Heat To "Showtime" Lakers

(via Sportsnet)

(via Sportsnet)

LeBron James may be lighting it up in Los Angeles, but there was a time where he was doing the same thing on the southern shores of Miami.

From 2010 to 2014, LeBron James formed and created one of the greatest teams of the modern era with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Together, three achieved unprecedented levels of success with two Championships (and four Finals appearances) in four years.

But are they on the same level as the "Showtime" Lakers? While some scoff at the idea, Pat Riley (who has seen both superteams first-hand) says they are comparable.

“We put the big-three together and to me, those four years will go down in history in this franchise as being four of the greatest years ever,” Pat Riley shared to FOX. “Even though we won the championship in 2006, we were a domiant team. That team was like the Lakers. It was like the Lakers of Showtime. It was like the Bulls in late 90s. It was like Detroit and it could’ve gone on a lot longer than it did.”

To compare LeBron and the Heat to the Showtime Lakers to the MJ-led Bulls is really saying something. While no franchise stays on top forever, those two teams were invincible for nearly a decade and are still known today as two of the greatest ever assembled.

To be fair, nobody is more qualified to speak on the subject than Pat Riley. He won four Championships as head coach of the Showtime Lakers and literally built the Heat "Big Three" in 2010 as team President.

Unfortunately, the numbers don't quite add up. In total, the Showtime Lakers era in L.A. lasted 11 seasons and resulted in four Lakers championships. The LeBron, Wade, and Bosh superteam only lasted four years in Miami and came out with half as many titles.

So while Riley may deserve the benefit of the doubt, not everyone is going to but into what he's saying here.