No one knows if the Miami Heat will return to the NBA Finals, but there are reasons to believe they will be better this regular season.
It’s been written and said in other spaces that the Miami Heat got worse this offseason. While I agree with the sentiment that this offseason was a failure (when you go after a star and don’t get him, that’s a big miss), but that does not necessarily mean that the Heat are worse — if that makes sense.
No one knows if the Heat will return to the NBA Finals, but the point of this piece isn’t to make predictions. Let’s also remember that the Heat won just 44 games last season and slipped from the No. 1 seed two seasons ago to the play-in tournament before making their miraculous postseason run. There are plenty of reasons to believe the Heat will be better this regular season than they were last.
1. More size
The Heat entered last season as one of the league’s smallest teams. Only one player in the rotation stood taller than 6-foot-9, and that player was Dewayne Dedmon, who played himself out of Miami’s rotation by December.
Since then, the Heat have added Kevin Love on last year’s buyout market and a pair of centers in Thomas Bryant and Orlando Robinson who grade out as elite rebounders. The 20-year-old Nikola Jovic should be ready to play a bigger role after playing in 15 games as a rookie. He’s 6-foot-10. Rookie Jaime Jaquez Jr., at 6-foot-7, adds size and strength on the wing.
In June, Pat Riley said the goal was to add length to the roster. They did that.
“I think overall we just added a lot more length and size,” Erik Spoelstra said this week. “And that, in my lense, leads to more versatility and more options of lineups we can play.”