Miami Heat show a rare ‘attack mode’ in Milwaukee Bucks mini-series sweep

Miami Heat guard Victor Oladipo (4) drives to the basket against the Milwaukee Bucks(Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports)
Miami Heat guard Victor Oladipo (4) drives to the basket against the Milwaukee Bucks(Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Miami Heat are coming off two pretty good wins for them. Always looking to stack up victories, they just beat the Milwaukee Bucks in consecutive matchups Thursday and Saturday.

And yes, though the Bucks didn’t have Giannis Antetokounmpo or Khris Middleton going for them, you take the wins you can get them. Besides, the Miami Heat were without Tyler Herro, Kyle Lowry, and Caleb Martin—three starters of their own.

Nonetheless, Gabe Vincent stepped up in a big way to help carry the Heat to victory on both occasions. Setting a new career high in the first win with 28 points, he would almost do it all over again in the second victory.

Going for 21 in the first half alone in Saturday’s win over the Bucks, he would only finish with 27, though more than enough to help his team get the win. But along with Vincent’s otherworldly production, relative to the rest of his year so far, the Miami Heat, as a team, played above their heads in one particular area as well.

The Miami Heat rank near the bottom of the NBA when it comes to points scored in the paint. However, you wouldn’t know that based on their last two wins.

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Outscoring the Milwaukee Bucks, 112-44(58-18 and 54-26), in the paint across the two games, the Miami Heat were as effective in close as they have been all year and in consecutive games nonetheless. There are caveats to it all that must be acknowledged though.

Yes, it was the same team, so there may just be something there schematically. It also didn’t hurt that a Defensive Player Of The Year winner, perennial All-Defensive candidate, and one of the best players in the league in Antetokounmpo wasn’t there.

However, the Bucks did have Jrue Holiday, one of the best defenders in the league and Brook Lopez, a top candidate for the NBA DPOY award to some this season so far, in the game for them. That’s worth something.

It certainly has to be, especially for a Miami Heat team tied for the 22nd rank as far as points in the paint are concerned. What matters is that they attacked the paint and cup relentlessly, no matter who was on the other side, and it worked.

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Hopefully, they can take something away from this pair of wins that helps foster more of this same kind of “attack mode” as they continue their season. While the points are one thing and certainly needed, getting in close with purpose can only help other areas of the offense as well.