— There is no pretense, no secret formula, no unexpected twist or Plan B.
It simply is Big Three. Or bust.
To put where the Miami Heat stand going into the postseason is to accept this reality:
Not only does it not matter who the Heat start at center or point guard, but those parts of the equation could easily change in coming weeks. And, if they do, not a single opponent will have to go back and adjust the game plan.
Last July, this was about LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. And for the next two months, this will be about LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.
Thirty times this season — more than one-third of the regular-season schedule — James, Wade and Bosh combined to score 75 or more points. That the Heat went 27-3 in those games is numbing.
And in the playoffs the minutes for those three only figure to increase, what with the reduced travel and lack of back-to-back games.
But it doesn't end there. Three times this season, James, Wade and Bosh have combined for at least, ahem, 94 points.
While scouting tends to even the playing field in the postseason, with the opposition able to lock in on a single approach, the Heat rob the opposition of much of that edge.
For the past six months, there has been little in the way of an offensive system. It mostly has been pick-and-roll, and, to an even greater degree, isolation.
And you can scheme all you want against talent, but double-teams and traps tend to be far less efficient when there are two other All-Star scorers on the floor.
So why didn't the Heat dominate instead of falling in behind the Chicago Bulls in the East?
Because over 82 games, depth counts plenty. And while there were 30 games when James, Wade and Bosh combined for 75, there also were 52 when they did not.
No, the offense should be fine. Even when their previous teams struggled in the postseason, James, Wade and Bosh got their numbers.
It is on the other end where opponents will attempt to expose the flaws.
And there are plenty.
Among the reasons James' Cleveland Cavaliers added Shaquille O'Neal a season ago was to get Zydrunas Ilgauskas out of the starting lineup, away from postseason matchups against Dwight Howard and other attacking big men.
Ilgauskas currently can be found in the Heat's starting lineup.
And among the reasons the Hawks moved Mike Bibby at the trading deadline was the reality that Bibby no longer simply was a single step behind opposing point guards.
Bibby is now the Heat's starting point guard.
As for the bench, body parts seemingly are falling off injury prone Mike Miller, Erick Dampier lost his starting job to Ilgauskas, Mario Chalmers lost his starting job to Bibby, and Joel Anthony is deemed worthy of a mild ovation when he catches the ball.
While Ilgauskas, Dampier and Anthony are capable of the occasional rebound, put-back and blocked shot, and while Bibby, Chalmers, Miller and James Jones can stretch the floor with their shooting, what is most lacking in support is anything resembling a defensive stopper.
The team that brought you Keith Askins, Bruce Bowen and James Posey, has nothing in that mode. Instead, if stops are needed, it will be up to James or Wade to pick up that responsibility, as well.
Because three players will have to carry such an exhaustive role, there are questions.
"The bench players are going to be the deciding thing, I think," Bobcats coach Paul Silas said last week. "If those guys don't play well, three players are not going to beat you."
That, of course, is how coaches have been programmed.
But playoff history is littered with individuals who have willed their teams to championships, including no less than Wade, who delivered title glory in 2006 despite the Heat dealing with the defensive deficiencies of Jason Williams and Antoine Walker.
With two of the top three scorers in the league and an All-Star at their flank, the Heat have changed the equation.
Where the Heat have been at their best this season is in transition. The question is whether such transition opportunities will be there in the playoffs, when the pace tends to slow.
"You can't turn the ball over against them, because that gives them transition," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "Wade was tough alone in transition last year, and LeBron was tough alone in Cleveland. Now you put them together and you turn the ball over now, you should just stay here and take the two points."
Then there is coach Erik Spoelstra's ability to get creative with his lineups, something practically mandated by the lack of skill in the middle. That well could leave Bosh with extended minutes at center in the playoffs, with James shifting to power forward.
"They have so many different options they can go to," said 76ers coach Doug Collins, whose team will face the Heat in the first round. "When they go to that small lineup, they are lethal because they put two other 3-point shooters out there, so they spread you with Wade and LeBron. They got Bosh, and they get you in pick-and-rolls and they spread you. So if you don't help, they get to the rim, and if you do, they kick out."
It is that style, with Miller and Jones (or another 3-point shooter, such as Bibby) that Collins sees as the Heat's most challenging to opponents.
"When you put LeBron at the four, that's his best position," Collins said. "That’s where he is monster, because you can't guard him. He's big enough to guard you, he's bigger than Karl Malone. He's got speed, quickness, power, grace, agility, and skill.
"When they go small, that's what you're going to see in the playoffs, as much as Chris Bosh probably doesn't want to play five. When they put Wade out there, and they put LeBron at four, and Bosh, and put a couple other guys out that can shoot that ball, they're tough."
Because it's all about LeBron, Wade and Bosh.
With everyone else just along for the ride.