Batman vs. Robin. It has been an ongoing argument since LeBron James joined Dwyane Wade in Miami before the start of last season. LeBron and Wade produced similar numbers last season and both struggled in the clutch, providing no clear answer to the Batman argument.
LeBron: 26.7 points, 7.0 assists, 7.5 rebounds, 51% field goals
Wade: 25.5 points, 4.6 assists, 6.4 rebounds, 50% field goals
Through three games this season the numbers look a little different
LeBron: 32.7 points, 6.0 assists, 7.3 rebounds, 59% field goals
Wade: 20.0 points, 6.0 assists, 3.3 rebounds, 49% field goals
However, Wade hit the game winning shot last night with 2.9 seconds left to give the Heat a 1-point win against the Charlotte Bobcats. Is Wade considered the Batman because he came through in the clutch and hit the game-winning basket? Or is it LeBron because he scored 35 points (to Wade’s 10) and was the reason the game was close in the first place? The real question should be, why can’t it be both? When Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant were teamed up in Los Angeles, it was obvious that Shaq was the more dominant player but the team often turned to Bryant in the clutch (although Robert Horry also hit many clutch shots for the Lakers). Despite the team rarely turning to Shaq in the clutch, the Batman vs. Robin argument was rarely brought up because it was obvious that they both brought things that were essential to the team winning. Take either one off that team and they would not have been even championship contenders. Although the dynamic between Wade and LeBron is different than between Shaq and Kobe because LeBron and Wade have similar styles of play the two couples are still similar in many ways. LeBron is often the more dominant player throughout the game but the team may turn to Wade in the clutch (at least last night). Many people say that Wade should be considered the Batman because he is the closer, the man who will take and make the game-winning shots. However, this argument is flawed. Since LeBron joined the Heat last season he has 1 game winning shot, to Wade’s 2. The fact of the matter is that LeBron joined Wade in Miami so that he did not have to do everything himself. He sacrificed personal numbers for a team accomplishment. Yes, it takes a team to win a championship. This does not mean that he is the Robin to Wade’s Batman. It is no longer Batman vs. Robin, but Batman vs. Batman.