The Last Dance: Miami Heat’s Pat Riley, “3-Peat”, & why he’s one of the best ever

Pat Riley listens to Shaquille O'Neal of the Miami Heat during a press conference to offically announce his arrival to the Miami Heat (Photo by Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images)
Pat Riley listens to Shaquille O'Neal of the Miami Heat during a press conference to offically announce his arrival to the Miami Heat (Photo by Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images) /

The Miami Heat are a great organization because Pat Riley sits on top. In fact on top, he’s one of the best ever & his “3-peat” clairvoyance proves it.

The Miami Heat are a great organization. That is a fact. Nothing else to say there, it can’t be disproven.

While that may indeed be relative or subjective in all actuality, you can have faith that it is as close to truthful as humanly possible because of who’s in charge down there in South Florida. When it comes to people, leaders, coaches, and simply basketball minds in general, there aren’t many people who you could or who would rightfully rank themselves ahead of the NBA’s Godfather, one Pat Riley.

Pat Riley has always been ahead of his time, not just with the Miami Heat. Way back when he was coaching the Los Angeles Lakers to championships, but prior to them attempting to win a third straight, Pat Riley did something preemptively that only a genius-level thinker would do.

We now know winning three straight titles in any walk of life simply as a “three-peat”. We can thank Pat Riley for that, although Byron Scott is said to have originally come up with the word concept after the Lakers won their second of two straight titles, before ultimately losing a bid for the third to the Detroit Pistons in the 1989 NBA Finals.

Well, although Riley and his team weren’t the reasons for it to happen, he would end up having the chance to capitalize on the word. Here is a quote from on how the whole thing went down.

"When a friend suggested at dinner one evening that Riley trademark the term, he acted on the advice and submitted a trademark application for “three-peat” on 7 November 1988 through his Riles & Co. business concern. Riley’s registering of the trademark didn’t mean that anyone who uttered or printed the word “three-peat” had to send money to him, but it did grant him exclusive commercial use of “three-peat” on shirts, jackets, andhats — anyone who wished to manufacture and sell those items of clothing had to obtain a license from Riles & Co. in order to print “three-peat” on them.The anticipated surge in sales of “three-peat” items failed to materialize as anticipated when the Lakers were swept in the 1989 NBA finals by the Detroit Pistons. The profits were merely delayed for a few years, however, as the Chicago Bulls (with the phenomenal Michael Jordan) pulled off a “three-peat” by taking three straight NBA crowns from 1991 to 1993. Riles & Co. then filed two more applications to register the term for use on collector plates, mugs, tankards, non-metal key chains, and plaques, putting them in good position to capitalize on the Bulls’ second string of three consecutive NBA titles between 1996 and 1998."

That’s quite an interesting little tale. If that doesn’t fully illustrate the depth of the magnitude of the idea that Riley’s forward-thinking acquaintance presented him, maybe this will. Check out this tweet from the Action Network’s Darren Rovell’s Twitter account.

That’s right, Pat Riley has always seen things before they happen. That didn’t just happen when he came to the Miami Heat.

Drafting best All-Miami Heat team from 2000 & beyond. dark. Next

Either way it goes, we are sure glad to have the Godfather on our side. He knows what’s coming, it’s just about the chips falling where he wants them.