Months after falling to the Boston Celtics in the final minute of Game 7 of the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals, the Miami Heat are back for their 35th season. The Heat, largely bringing back last season’s roster, host the Chicago Bulls in their season opener Wednesday night at 7:30.
Over the off-season, Miami lost P.J. Tucker to the Philadelphia 76ers in free agency. They re-signed Victor Oladipo, Caleb Martin and Dewayne Dedmon and drafted Nikola Jovic, but that’s it. (Unless you count the new players on two-way contracts, Jamal Cain and Dru Smith.) And many pundits have downgraded the 2022 Eastern Conference top seed’s prospects, believing that other contenders have passed them by.
Yes, Miami still has a hole at the power forward position. But Jimmy Butler is coming off an amazing performance in the 2022 playoffs. This team can still contend.
The Heat face the Chicago Bulls, a team that started last year strong. Midway through the 2021-22 campaign, Miami and Chicago battled for the top seed in the East. DeMar DeRozan was an MVP candidate. But the Bulls consistently struggled against the top teams and won just eight games after the All-Star break. They bowed out in five games to the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round.
Former Heat point guard Goran Dragic signed with Chicago in the off-season.
- Heat -6
- O/U: 217.5
- Money Line: Heat -215, Bulls +185
PG: Lonzo Ball
SG: Alex Caruso
SF: Zach LaVine
PF: DeMar DeRozan
C: Nikola Vucevic
PG: Kyle Lowry
SG: Tyler Herro
SF: Jimmy Butler
PF: Caleb Martin
C: Bam Adebayo
TV: Bally Sports Sun, NBA League Pass
RADIO: 560 Sports WQAM and The HEAT Radio Network (Jason Jackson, Ruth Riley Hunter)
SPANISH RADIO: WAQI 710AM & The HEAT Spanish Radio Network (José Pañeda, Joe Pujala)