2013 NBA Championship Power Rankings From WhatIfSports.com image

Miami Heat vs. last 25 NBA champions

We simulate the 2012-13 Miami Heat head-to-head against every NBA champion from the past 25 years

June 25, 2013

Using our NBA simulation engine, we placed the 2012-13 Miami Heat in a round-robin tournament featuring every NBA champion from the past 25 years. Every team in the tournament played every other team 51 times. The simulation generated each team's winning percentage (Win %) and average points per game (PPG).

To simulate these games or any other theoretical matchups of your choosing, try the WhatIfSports.com NBA SimMatchup tool.

2012-13 Miami Heat vs. Last 25 NBA Champions
RankTeamWin %PPGSimulate vs. Miami Heat
12012-13 Miami Heat70.7104.7NBA Champions!
21995-96 Chicago Bulls62.1101.4SimMatchup >
32006-07 San Antonio Spurs59.4100.3SimMatchup >
41996-97 Chicago Bulls59.399.0SimMatchup >
52008-09 Los Angeles Lakers58.5105.0SimMatchup >
61994-95 Houston Rockets58.1107.6SimMatchup >
72007-08 Boston Celtics57.4101.2SimMatchup >
81991-92 Chicago Bulls55.6104.1SimMatchup >
92004-05 San Antonio Spurs54.998.5SimMatchup >
102011-12 Miami Heat53.6101.5SimMatchup >
112001-02 Los Angeles Lakers51.4103.3SimMatchup >
121990-91 Chicago Bulls50.5105.3SimMatchup >
132000-01 Los Angeles Lakers50.0104.2SimMatchup >
142010-11 Dallas Mavericks49.5104.3SimMatchup >
151992-93 Chicago Bulls49.3101.9SimMatchup >
162005-06 Miami Heat48.9104.0SimMatchup >
171999-00 Los Angeles Lakers48.5100.6SimMatchup >
182002-03 San Antonio Spurs44.497.7SimMatchup >
192009-10 Los Angeles Lakers41.799.9SimMatchup >
201988-89 Detroit Pistons41.5104.6SimMatchup >
211989-90 Detroit Pistons41.1101.5SimMatchup >
221987-88 Los Angeles Lakers40.7107.7SimMatchup >
231997-98 Chicago Bulls40.496.8SimMatchup >
241998-99 San Antonio Spurs39.597.2SimMatchup >
251993-94 Houston Rockets39.1102.2SimMatchup >
262003-04 Detroit Pistons34.097.5SimMatchup >

The Miami Heat dominated the league during the 2012-13 regular season, putting together a stretch of 27 consecutive victories en route to an NBA-best 66-16 record. They began the playoffs by winning eight of their first nine games, but needed a full seven-game series to oust the Indiana Pacers. Still, the Heat entered the Finals firmly entrenched as the favorite over the San Antonio Spurs. It quickly became apparent that the Spurs were no pushovers and the Heat found themselves trailing in the series three games to two. A clutch three-pointer from Ray Allen kept the team's hopes alive in Game 6 and LeBron James dominated Game 7 to secure a second consecutive championship for the franchise.

Now the Heat face another challenge. Using our NBA simulation engine, we "played" a tournament in which the 2012-13 Heat squared off against the past 25 NBA champions.

The newest Larry O'Brien Trophy-winners ranked first in the simulation, winning more than 70 percent of their games. Their 104.7 points per game ranked fifth among the simulation's participants. Included in the teams that the 2012-13 Heat edged out were two other Heat squads. The 2011-12 Heat finished 10th in the simulation, while the 2005-06 Heat ranked 16th.

The 1995-96 Chicago Bulls finished runner-up in the tournament, as Michael Jordan's fourth championship team yielded 101.4 points per game and a 62.1 win percentage in the simulation. The Bulls placed six teams in the tourney field and finished with three in the top eight spots.

The Los Angeles Lakers also had six teams in the tournament, but none better than the 2008-09 Lakers, which finished fifth. The best of the Spurs' four squads, the 2006-07 team, ranked third.


Jake Westrich is the Digital Content Coordinator for WhatIfSports.com. He can be reached at jwestrich@whatifsports.com.

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