Should the 2017-18 Miami Heat be enticed by roster teases?

MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 22: Josh Richardson
MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 22: Josh Richardson /

It’s time to bury the excuses for the ups and downs of the Miami Heat season.

If five weeks into the season was too early to speculate on if the Miami Heat roster was equipped enough to compete, how about 10 weeks?

Multiple reasons have been given for Miami’s inconsistency this season: the injury bug, the comfort of new deals and a few players adapting to new roles. At a certain point it all starts to sound like built-in excuses. And that point is when games become four quarters of a lack of effort.

Do not get me wrong, the Heat have sustained plenty of missing bodies to avoid dropping below .500 before the new year. However, their play has not been true to the system that works in Miami.

The Sun-Sentinel’s Ira Winderman seemed to agree after the Brooklyn Nets debacle:

"“A playoff contender might throw in one of these occasionally, but this was the fifth time the Heat trailed by 30 or more in a game this season. And we’re not even at midseason yet. Yes, there hardly has been lineup continuity, but that was supposed to be where the “culture” part of the equation entered the equation. Only it didn’t. Again.”"

Coming back from an 18-point deficit versus the Orlando Magic–the following night–may say something different, but being down by 30 points or more in five contests says a lot about the mindset of this squad.

Heart, defense and determination have often given way to sleepwalking, pouting and lack of focus. Often times placing the gauge for Miami more along the lines of the Philadelphia 76ers without Joel Embiid, than the San Antonio Spurs minus Kawhi Leonard.

Every team goes through roster peaks and valleys. Their rosters are also usually built to deal with it. The Heat roster? Not so much when there are no old or impending stars to carry the burden.

As a result, thoughts about Miami’s future become a little scattered. The disappointment brings for calls to hit reset and ride it out with the likes of Tyler Johnson, Josh Richardson, Bam Adebayo and maybe James Johnson. Yet the flashes of good are at a level that gives hope that something could come out of the collective.

Next: Miami Heat entirely outrun by Brooklyn Nets, falling 111-87

It is on the Heat to figure out if the positives are more of a tease or second half noise maker.