It’s a chance to breathe.
The NBA All-Star break is here and the Miami Heat get an entire week off from basketball. Is that a good thing or bad thing? At 26-30, the Heat are on the outside looking in for the Eastern Conference playoffs right now and they have been mildly inconsistent.
So here we are going to take a moment have our State of the HEAT analysis. How are things going?
In regards to expectations, slightly below. Anyone who has been paying close attention to the team and who can take their Heat blinders off would know that they weren’t cracking the top 5 in the East. The goal would probably be back to the 6th seed and at least the 8th seed. The Heat are not far from either, but they haven’t given us much indication they will make either.
Yes, the loss of Goran Dragic to extended absence is huge. He truly is an engine that the Heat need to make other things work. But the true disappointment is that the Heat can have such huge differences in how they play. There is no other way to say it: they are inconsistent. One night they can score 120 points and do things easily and the next night they struggle to get to 90 points.
It doesn’t make sense and has left Erik Spoelstra speechless at times. It truly is “like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.”
The next issue they have had is winning at home. The Heat are 11-16 at home and 15-14 on the road. Explain that. You can’t. No one can. The Heat have not only dropped home games, but have dropped home games to subpar teams. It has been very costly for them in the standings and in their progress as a team.
Despite averaging 105 PPG as a team, they are still 27th in the league in scoring. This was a concern of ours as the HHH team previewed the season and it has become a reality. The culture of the Heat was hard work, grit and grind. But it hasn’t produced a fluid offense, and they just traded away two offensive players.
Probably the best thing you are seeing from them is the emergence of their young core. Josh Richardson, Bam Adebayo, and Justise Winslow have all showed tremendous promise. Maybe not franchise altering promise, but definitely promise of getting better and able to change games. It’s been great to watch them play. The mistakes happen, but the opportunity, they are making the most of it.
Next, what this season has been and will be about is Dwyane Wade. He has been great, a joy to watch and pretty consistent. He should be in the conversation for 6th Man of the Year. April 9th will be a special moment in Miami Heat history. Having Wade on the team makes excitement heading into every game.
And lastly, the good is that despite their play and record, they have a chance to turn it around. They are only 2.5 games back of 6th in the East and have a chance to create some momentum when Dragic returns and as Dion Waiters gets back to his former self. There’s always something to look forward to with the Heat.
Current Grade: C
They’ve been average and the hope is that they can get better.