Miami Heat put on the classic ‘letdown game’ in Memphis

Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra watches during the first half against the Memphis Grizzlies(Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports)
Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra watches during the first half against the Memphis Grizzlies(Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Miami Heat walked into Memphis on Monday with their heads held high. Beating the league and conference best, Boston Celtics, in a thriller on Friday night, the Miami Heat finally thought they had something they could build on.

The Big 4 had all played well, to quote Coach Erik Spoelstra himself, and the team was able to get consistent, cohesive, and complete showings from most of their parts for a change. Heck and also for a change, they had most of their parts in tow to actually be able to go to on Friday.

Carrying that good health over into Monday and setting the stage even more perfectly for a Miami Heat win, the Memphis Grizzlies would be without, arguably, their three best players in Jaren Jackson Jr., Desmond Bane, and of course, Ja Morant.

You always want to beat a team as healthy as you can catch them but you also play the team that is on the schedule that particular day and available for said team, plus you take a win how you can get it.

The Miami Heat had a chance to go into Memphis on Monday to snag an easy win. Instead, they would put on the classic ‘letdown game’, executed perfectly.

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But, of course, the Miami Heat couldn’t do that. Walking into FedExForum, this should have already been on the Miami Heat’s mind.

Knowing the Grizzlies are well coached, tough-minded, recently historically feisty against the Miami Heat, and looking to play above their heads without their top talent—this should have never happened.

This is always something you worry about though, especially coming off a big win and especially in light of who Memphis deployed. The Miami Heat looked uninterested from the start, showing all over them and their body language.

They didn’t do things with “purpose” or “intent”, yet, seemed to only go through the motions. It sounds cliche, however, Monday night was a night to actually be able to see what that looks like in real life if you haven’t.

The Grizzlies played tougher and wanted it more. That seemed absolutely apparent in how they went about scoring 64 of their 101 points in the paint on Monday.

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The Miami Heat will look to cleanse themselves of this one, hopefully only to bathe it away with a win over the bottom-dwelling Detroit Pistons on Tuesday, the second night of a back-to-back set.