clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

So far, so good for Heat depth

Tyler Herro and Max Strus have shown themselves capable of scoring off the bench.

Atlanta Hawks v Miami Heat Photo by Michael Reaves/NBAE via Getty Images

In a podcast episode with Chris Herring last month, Zach Lowe said that the Miami Heat would be a worse regular-season team than projected. While he said that he loved Miami’s starting five, the depth worried him.

Three preseason games in, and Miami’s depth has proven up to the task. Last night, the Heat rested Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Kyle Lowry, P.J. Tucker and Dewayne Dedmon. Gabe Vincent, Caleb Martin and Marcus Garrett all sat out with injuries. Miami still defeated a San Antonio Spurs team that didn’t rest anyone.

Of course, these are just three exhibition games. But two key pillars of the Heat’s second unit — Tyler Herro and Max Strus — appear suited to score in bunches off the bench.

Herro, who will be the Heat’s sixth man until Victor Oladipo returns, has shown deft ball-handling and separation ability to lead the league in preseason scoring. In both Miami’s preseason opener against Atlanta and in San Antonio last night, Herro went on scoring binges. To do it against Dejounte Murray, a former All-Defensive Team player, is even more impressive.

Strus made six 3-pointers last night, but he also ran out for a breakaway dunk early in last night’s game. As I said before, if Strus can hit 3s at an above-average clip, he’ll have the backup wing spot over Caleb Martin — again, until Oladipo returns.

On the flip side, Markieff Morris has yet to make a 3-pointer in the preseason. He’s never been a great 3-point shooter, but he should at least be a respectable one. If not, defenses will sag off him, like they did to Andre Iguodala the last year-and-a-half.

Again, it’s just three preseason games. Herro and Strus are not going to play as well as they have all season long. Morris will hit some 3s. But it’s good to see Miami’s reserves playing well before opening night.