Concluding his 12th year in the NBA, the 2020-21 season was yet another productive one for Miami Heat guard Goran Dragic. Dragic remained as a quality reserve this year and in 50 appearances (11 starts), he averaged 13.4 points and 4.4 assists, with a True Shooting Percentage of 55 percent.
He also shot a career-best 82 percent from the free-throw line. After being, arguably, one of the best players in last year’s postseason run for the Heat, Dragic showed flashes ,again, of what was the best stretch of his career.
After fully recovering from a foot-injury that forced him to miss four-consecutive games of the 2020 NBA Finals, yet another injury-plagued season was in store for him in 2021. However, Dragic showed determination to play in 50 of a possible 72 games with lingering knee and back issues.
Offensive Grade – B
In the past two seasons, Dragic has fully embraced a complimentary role off the Heat bench, which has been best suited for him at this point of his career. Although and no matter the circumstance, he’ll always be able to provide dependable offense, as he did in 2021.
Dragic’s best game of the season came in December of last year. With 26 points (9-17 shooting, 4-7 three-point) and five rebounds off the bench, as he stepped up in the absence of Jimmy Butler, he helped lead the Heat to a ,119-108, bounce-back win over the Bucks.
34 year-old Miami Heat veteran, Goran Dragic, has wrapped up his fifth season with the Heat and his 12th overall. How did the Dragon perform in 2021?
This was less than 24 hours after losing to Milwaukee in a, 144-97, blowout-loss. Goran scored double-figures in 35 of his 50 games played in 2021 and with his craftiness, it’s still a fun sight to watch Dragic aggressively play inside-and-out with those slashing and probing capabilities.
Defensive Grade – C-
While he does make the effort, Dragic remained as a top defensive liability for the Heat. In fact, it’s practically gotten worse every year.
He still continues to give shooters zero-room for landing and commits certain fouls that veterans shouldn’t, which has been an ongoing issue since he first donned a Heat uniform in 2015. Aside from his current age not giving him a strong backing, Dragic struggled to defend larger players — especially when the Heat were in zone coverage to pressure opposing offenses on the ball.
There were several Miami Heat breakdowns where Goran failed to rotate towards the rim, leading to easy interior scores. Dragic finished the year with a career-worst -1.8 Defensive Plus/Minus, ranking worse than other Heat perimeter players, Duncan Robinson (-0.9) and Tyler Herro (-1.1).
Overall Grade – B-
Once a second-tier Point Guard in the league, it’s inevitable that Dragic is in the final stages of his illustrious playing career. He is who he is at this point and his best years are far behind him.
The Heat hold a team option for Dragic this summer and if they decline, any organization that picks up the 34-year old veteran will, at least, know what they’re getting. However, a return to Miami next year would be beneficial for their younger guards to continue learning from him.
Plus, he’s still a microwave. The Heat still need all of that in which they can find.