RTD: Takeaways from the Miami Heat’s loss to the Warriors

Feb 24, 2016; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Heat guard Josh Richardson (0) drives to the basket as Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) defends during the second half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 24, 2016; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Heat guard Josh Richardson (0) drives to the basket as Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) defends during the second half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports /

There are a lot of takeaways from the Miami Heat’s close loss to the Golden State Warriors.

Following the Miami Heat’s thrilling game (and loss) against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday night, the All U Can Heat staff comes together to digest everything that happened.

1. On a scale from jaywalking to grand theft, how illegal was Draymond Green’s screen at the end of the game?

Kristopher Keaton (@kmkeaton2): It was premeditated murder. As blatant as an illegal screen could possibly be. He took the defender almost into the backcourt. Definitely worthy of a call.

Allana Tachauer (@ChitownHeiress): This is a trick question, right? Asking this is like someone trying to contest a red-light ticket by saying “it wasn’t me,” while holding up the printed photo of them blatantly driving the car in question. SHAME ON YOU, MONEY GREEN.

Ehsan Kassim (@Ehsan_Kassim): Green should be happy Bush isn’t president anymore, otherwise he’d have declared war on Green for having screens of massive destruction for that illegal screen. Let me add, that screen is not why the Heat lost though.

Wes Goldberg (@wcgoldberg): Look, people set illegal screens all the time in the NBA. The pick-and-roll and pick-and-pop game, not to mention all the off-ball stuff teams do now, is too prevalent to call every moving screens. But, if you’re going to call one, this is the one you call! For God’s sake, Green set the screen and basically pelvic thrusts Josh Richardson further and further away from Curry. The refs dropped the ball on this one.

2. How impressed were you by Josh Richardson (15 points, 3-of-3 from the 3-point line tonight in 29 minutes)?

Keaton: Pretty impressed, especially given the competition. With Tyler and Beno out for the year, it’s the perfect opportunity to get some reps for the rookie. He took full advantage tonight.

Tachauer: Definitely impressed, but not necessarily surprised. I’ve been rooting for Richardson since I saw what he was made of via the Summer League. I will say though, his confidence is increasing with every game and I think that’ll only propel him further.

Kassim: Very and I’m glad we get to see him develop for the next couple of weeks instead of another 32-year old PG with no future in Miami stealing Richardson’s minutes. While the Heat are going to the playoffs more than likely, the are not a finals contender, so might as well see what the young ones can do. Especially if Bosh is done for the season.

Goldberg: With Beno Udrih out for the season, a lot of people talked about the Heat picking up another guard. Tony Wroten has been mentioned. Me? I wanted to at least see what Richardson could do. He’s been impressive since the All-Star break, and he had the best game of his career against the Warriors (of all teams). He looked like the 3-and-D guy the Heat need him to become, defending Curry tightly and hitting all three of his 3-pointers.

3. Hassan Whiteside came off the bench, again, to score 21 points and grab 13 rebounds. What did he show you tonight?

Keaton: I’ve been on the “Trade Hassan” train all season, and I still am. But the talent he has is unable to be ignored, which has always been my stance. He dominated GSW’s frontcourt and he’s been great in his bench role.

Tachauer: What did Whiteside show me? That all of you who wanted to trade him at the deadline, were wrong. Leaving me to ultimately be right, thank you very much. Also, that perhaps the fear of being traded was enough to give him a swift kick in the rear in regards to adjusting his mindset and attitude.

Kassim: I was actually the first one on the trade Hassan bandwagon and it had nothing to do with his talent. To me, the game showed me he’s probably the best player on the court for the Heat most nights (Wade included) and the team really needs to find ways to get him more offensive touches to score. If you do that, the eventual double teams will help a lot with spacing.

Goldberg: He showed me that he’s possibly the best bench player in the league when he’s at his peak. Whiteside came in early and scored 11 points in seven minutes, and he ignited a Heat run to give them an eight point lead.

4. Do you buy that this is a moral victory for the Heat? Are you feeling better about this team after the game?

Keaton: As an athlete, I was always taught that moral victories don’t exist. I think they played great but lost to the better team on this night. I don’t really feel better about the team, given the long-term outlook, but they played very well tonight.

Tachauer: Um, absolutely. Look, a win would have meant more, obviously. But they really grinded this one out. And given that they are down a few bodies, as well as need to make some roster adjustments period, I’ll take it. More than that, they should be applauded for their efforts tonight.

Kassim: Do I believe in moral victories? No. But this is probably as close to one as you can get in the league, playing without Bosh and two of your backup PGs. Heat played really well, but all night it felt like only a matter of time till the Warriors would steal the game.

Goldberg: I am a big believer in moral victories. Whether or not they should exist is another debate, and usually the debate people are actually having when they talk about moral victories. If you’re the Heat, how do you not feel good about this game? Dwyane Wade rose up to the challenge, sure. But that’s expected. Look at Deng. Look at Winslow. Look at Richardson. Look at how Whiteside forced the Warriors to go away from the death lineup late in the game. Miami had a chance to win the game and Curry got spicy and nailed a pair of 3s to end the game. That’s going to happen and it’s happened 50 other times already this season. Teams don’t beat the Warriors. Teams usually don’t even come close. Miami almost had them. TWICE. The Heat can hang their heads high after this one, and I think they are.