Could depth be the answer to the Miami Heat’s struggles?

MIAMI, FL - OCTOBER 30: Bam Adebayo
MIAMI, FL - OCTOBER 30: Bam Adebayo /

The Miami Heat have now lost three in a row, but the depth of this team could be improving.

There was a lot of hype around this Miami Heat team coming into the season, but a loss to the Orlando Magic in the season opener and now having lost three in a row, has changed that emotion.

The Struggle

Looking for answers, the Heat held a meeting to try and get things turned around before they went too far south. Coming out of the gates on Monday night against the Minnesota Timberwolves, it looked as if this was the team fans have been looking for.

But sadly, it wasn’t meant to be, as a few key factors held Miami from a win. The Heat ended up turning the ball over 24 times, a season-high. 15 of those turnovers coming from Goran Dragic (6), Dion Waiters (5) and Kelly Olynyk (4).

However otherwise, all three had a great showing. Dragic started the game going 5-for-5 in the first quarter, finishing with 18 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists. And Waiters was really the only reason why Miami even had a chance in the end, racking up 33 points and three steals. Needless to say, the Waiters we’ve been waiting for, officially arrived. Olynyk coming off the bench had a season-high 23 points, six rebounds, and two assists. But the team knew they shot themselves in the foot, despite their big performances.

"“Those turnovers hurt us tonight,” said Dragic. But you know I felt like we had good spacing this game. We had a couple of open shots. The ball was moving so it’s a little bit of an improvement. But we still need to do a lot of work.”"

There were still positives though. For one, Miami was moving the ball incredibly well. The only problem was when they found the open man behind-the-arc, they couldn’t hit. The team went 7-of-27 from downtown on Monday, shooting 32.9 percent. That ranks them No.22 in the league currently.

Still, all hope is not lost.

Later in the game, Olynyk missed yet another 3-pointer. That’s actually where we find hope. Off the missed shot was Okaro White for the putback dunk. He then drew a charge and gave the Heat the 79-78 lead, with a 3 of his own.

It was White’s first real playing time this season and he made the most of it. The stat-line won’t give him much credit, with only six points and a rebound in 17 minutes of play, but he played a huge role during vital points.

Monday was actually huge in the sense of what the depth of this team can do. The bench alone posted 51 points, with three players having ten or more points. The Heat were able to go ten deep against Minnesota and nine deep against Boston.

Without Hassan Whiteside, who’s still out due to a bruised knee, Bam Adebayo and Jordan Mickey have been the starters at center. Mickey had six boards and two points versus Atlanta, and six boards with eight points against Indiana in his two starts. But more impressive has been the rook.

Adebayo didn’t do anything too impressive in his first couple of starts but continued to improve. Against the Timberwolves is where he showed what he could do. In his third start of the season, he recorded his first career double-double, and it was clear Adebayo found his rhythm. The first-round pick posted 13 points and 13 boards.

Of course, once Whiteside comes back we all know both of these players will return to the bench. What’s exciting is knowing what kind of talent that is on the bench.

It allows starters to have an off night and the team not have to suffer for it. It means rest during long stretches or near the end of the season. Most importantly, it equals potential whenever you need it, and a nightmare for their opponents to guard.

Next: There were plenty of positives in the Miami Heat's loss to the Timberwolves

Even with the team struggling from 3 and the issues of turnovers, Miami was still able to force OT against Minnesota. There are some things the Heat have to figure out, but when they tweak those few issues, it could change the momentum of the season.