LeBron James almost had a flawless season in 2013 – until he lost to Marc Gasol and the Grizzlies in the Conference Finals. It was an agonising end to an otherwise remarkable campaign for the NBA’s best player.
The Toronto Raptors had a spectacular season in 2013. They were one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference, earning the number one seed in the playoffs and making it to the first round. There, they faced the Miami Heat, who had the number two seed, but were considered to be the second best team in the east.
Before this season, LeBron James had already lost three straight NBA Finals to the San Antonio Spurs. In 2010, it was a four-game sweep; in 2011, a five-game series loss. In 2012, he lost the Finals to the Heat, despite a 4-2 series lead. “Bronny” was just about to enter his prime, and he had every reason to believe it would be his crowning achievement.. Read more about pau gasol and let us know what you think.
Simply said, LeBron James dominated the 2012-2013 season. LeBron James almost won every major trophy a professional basketball player could win in his third season with the Miami Heat. During the regular season and the playoffs, he was a champion. His efforts were acknowledged by the NBA and the media, but one player ruined his near-perfection.
Marc Gasol of the Memphis Grizzlies, an All-Star big, was not going to let LeBron win everything. Gasol enjoyed a memorable season, guiding the Grizzlies to their first-ever Conference Finals appearance in club history. Simply stated, everything was OK until Gasol took something from LeBron. Overall, it was most likely LeBron’s greatest season in his professional basketball career.
NBA Champion in 2013
The Heat’s postseason performance is near-legendary. The Heat’s overtime victory against the Spurs in Game 6 gave the Heat an NBA-record.889 playoff winning % in overtime games. The Heat also broke playoff records with double-digit victories, but it was LeBron’s exceptional campaign that culminated to him earning his second championship and Finals MVP.
In Game 6 and Game 7 of the NBA Finals, LeBron scored over 30 points, making him the only player in NBA history to record consecutive 30 point games to rescue a team from a 3-2 hole. His 32 points, 10 rebounds, and 11 assists in Game 6 tied him with Oscar Robertson for the most 25 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists in a playoff game. His 37 points in Game 7 were his fourth consecutive game with at least 30 points, matching Elgin Baylor as the only player in NBA history to do so. In Game 7s, he averages 34.4 points per game, which is an NBA record.
MVP of the 2013 Finals
LeBron’s performance in the Finals was unquestionably legendary, which is why he was named Finals MVP for the second time in a row. Even when his team lost, LeBron did all he could to help them win. In a Game 1 defeat, for example, LeBron had a triple-double of 18 points, 18 rebounds, and 10 assists.
His Game 6 and Game 7 efforts will go down in NBA history as some of the greatest clutch basketball ever seen. Many people use Ray Allen’s game-tying three-pointer as a scapegoat for LeBron’s brilliance. The truth is that LeBron achieved things that only legendary players like Oscar Robertson and Elgin Baylor have ever done. His performance in Game 7 alone should have earned him the title of Finals MVP.
NBA MVP in 2013
LeBron was also named MVP of the league. His 19.3 win shares, as well as his 14.6 offensive win shares, topped the league. His offensive rating per 100 possessions that season (125) was the best of his career, according to Basketball-Reference. Just when you thought you’ve seen the best of him, the 2012-2013 season may have been his greatest offensive year yet.
The Heat won the division by 22 games over the Hawks in second place. The club had a 12-game lead over the Knicks as the No. 1 seed in the East. This season, the MVP was on another level, which is why he was voted the league’s top player.
Winning Streak of 27 Games
The Heat’s “Big Three” of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh were given the opportunity to defend their NBA title for the first time in the 2012-2013 season. During the season, the Heat went on a 27-game winning run, which was the second-longest in NBA history at the time. The Heat completed the season with an overall record of 66-16.
The Heat beat the 76ers on March 8, 2013, to become the first club in the league to secure a playoff spot. The run had lasted 17 games at the time. The Heat then beat the Pacers two days later, ensuring that the Heat had defeated every NBA team this season. The next week, LeBron clinched the Southeast Division with a game-winning jumper against Brandon Bass, extending his run to 23 games.
The Heat defeated the Cavaliers two days later after overcoming a league-high 27-point third-quarter deficit. On March 27, the Heat were defeated 101-97 by the Chicago Bulls, ending their winning run.
First Team All-NBA
Even without the winning run, LeBron, Wade, and Bosh were selected for the All-Star Game. The game took place in February, just around the time when the winning run began. The Heat were even more impressive in March, going 17-1 to become the first club in NBA history to win 17 games in a single calendar month.
Aside from the streak, LeBron had a fantastic year in terms of statistics. He had a 26.8 point, 8.0 rebound, 7.2 assist, and 1.7 steals per game average. Not only was he named to the All-NBA First Team, but he was also named to the First Team All-Defensive.
All-Defensive First Team
Tony Allen of the Memphis Grizzlies topped the league in votes for the All-Defensive First Team, while LeBron James was only one vote behind him. Allen received 53 votes, while LeBron received 52. Each player, though, got 25 First Team votes. He had 17 games with at least three thefts and 10 games with at least two steals and two blocks, in addition to helping the Heat to a 66-win season.
Marc Gasol wins DPOY for the second year in a row. Despite not being named to the All-Defensive First Team,
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When everything is said and done, LeBron led an unprecedented winning run, was named All-NBA and All-Defense, earned MVP, Finals MVP, and a title. What more could you ask for in the middle of a year like this? When it comes to Defensive Player of the Year, LeBron came in second behind Marc Gasol. Gasol was selected to the All-Defensive Second Team, while LeBron was named to the First Team.
According to advanced analytics, Gasol outscored LeBron 5.1 to 4.7 in defensive win shares. That’s not a huge difference. Gasol’s defensive rating (98) was worse than LeBron’s per 100 possessions (101). That season, LeBron averaged more defensive rebounds than Gasol. According to the statistics, LeBron should have won all of the honors throughout the season.
LeBron did everything right in the end. LeBron found a way to put the team on his back throughout the regular season and into the playoffs. It’s not unusual for a player to not win all of the big honors, but Gasol’s selection as DPOY is particularly unexpected.
Following 2012 champion Tyson Chandler, who was selected to the Second Team, this was the second year in a row that a player from the All-Defensive First Team did not win DPOY. Only Chandler and Gasol have won the DPOY when they were not selected to the First Team since 1996. There’s a strong argument to be made that Tony Allen deserved to win the trophy, but in any event, LeBron came close to achieving perfection this season. He was almost as good as Michael Jordan. The truth is that we didn’t enjoy it as much as we could have because of our hatred for the 2010 “ruling.”
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