Miami Heat: 13 player grades for the first half of the regular season

MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 08: Head coach Erik Spoelstra of the Miami Heat directs his team against the Denver Nuggets at American Airlines Arena on January 8, 2019 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 08: Head coach Erik Spoelstra of the Miami Heat directs his team against the Denver Nuggets at American Airlines Arena on January 8, 2019 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
14 of 14
Next
MIAMI, FL – JANUARY 10: Josh Richardson #0 of the Miami Heat dribbles with the ball against the Boston Celtics at American Airlines Arena on January 10, 2019 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL – JANUARY 10: Josh Richardson #0 of the Miami Heat dribbles with the ball against the Boston Celtics at American Airlines Arena on January 10, 2019 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Miami Heat. JOSH RICHARDSON. A-. . SG

The Miami Heat’s Josh Richardson has proven that he can ball out in this league if given the opportunity. Richardson, undoubtedly, gets the highest player grade of this entire column because of his improved play this season.

It was truly the rumors of him being traded for Jimmy Butler that would have sent the 25-year-old to Minnesota that lit a fire under him to be better, not sure he is a fan of the cold.

Richardson is averaging 18.0 PPG, 3.9 AST, 3.9 TRB, 1.1 STL, with shooting splits of 40.8/37.5/86.0.

Not that far off from Butler’s stat line, with Richardson barely making double digits in the millions ($10-11) over the next few years, keeping J-Rich happened to be one of the bigger steals around the league. Not to mention the insane presence that he also presents on the defensive end, being one of the longer and quicker guards to play off-the-ball and constantly disrupting his opponents.

Ultimately, J-Rich deserves the highest grade on this team, and it isn’t much of a fight for the no. 1 spot. Goran Dragic has been the Heat’s best player for the past few seasons, and it may just be Richardson who takes the cake for the near future.

Next. 5 trades for Bradley Beal. dark

This Heat team as a whole was graded pretty above average, which is ironically where their 21-20 record puts them in the NBA standings as well, with the 15th best record in the league. Basketball purgatory is a rough place to leave once you get comfortable, but Miami is not complacent, so expect them to turn it up during the second half of this season.