The Cavs got their Christmas present early from a permanent visit from Shaqaclaus as Orlando did their magic with a swap of their own by bringing in swingman Vince Carter.
The Wizards summoned an improved offensive game with two legit scorers in Randy Foye and Mike Miller. While Atlanta reached new heights with the addition of Jamal Crawford.
It is clear - the Eastern Conference is in an arms race for title contention.
At the same time, Miami sits aside watching their foes improve drastically while their core stays intact.
Is this a smart strategy for Miami?
When you think about it, it isn't a bad strategy at all.
The biggest offseason rumor involving the Heat has involved Raptors big man Chris Bosh. Assuming that a blockbuster trade gets done and Miami acquires the All-Star/Olympian, will it solve Miami's greater problems and lead them to the promised land? It's tough to believe Bosh would be that end all, be all.
By staying away from the race and keeping the team united, Miami is saving a lot of money and leaving their options open for a more viable 2010 offseason that could fill up the many holes that the Heat have.
Pat Riley will continue to drive home the campaign for re-signing Wade to an extention in order to ensure that he is Miami's franchise player, today and tomorrow. Now it's up to Wade to decide whether he wants to fight it out with his teammates and wait another year before major improvements are made.
Let's not weigh out the possibility of Michael Beasley emerging as a better, more refined player that lives up to his hype. It would also be unwise to dismiss Mario Chalmers and his continued development at the point guard position. Potential is in abundance in Miami.
While many critical fans will shun Riley for his urgency to make a move (or lack thereof), there is a possiblity that the best move is to make no move at all. Patience is a virtue and sticking to your guns could be the best solution for a team.
A second round playoff appearance would likely be considered a success for Miami next season. Whether they make a trade or not, it is unknown as to how Miami will match-up against the revamped Eastern Conference - particularly against the Magic, Wizards and Hawks, which are all in Miami's division.