3 Crucial stats that will determine if the Heat win or lose

Jun 4, 2023; Denver, CO, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) and center Bam Adebayo (13) talk
Jun 4, 2023; Denver, CO, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) and center Bam Adebayo (13) talk / Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
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The Miami Heat are a hard team to figure out. They went 11 out of 14 games from February to March, prompting many a talking ahead to announce some version of “Don’t count out the Heat.”

Then they responded to that stretch by dropping their last four games. Some games against the vaunted Oklahoma City Thunder on the second night of a back-to-back and even Wednesday’s home loss to the defending champion Denver Nuggets are excusable. But a Sunday swoon to the laughable Washington Wizards? Miami can’t afford those kinds of losses, especially not while in a car crash of a race to escape the Eastern Conference’s play-in tournament.

The Heat sit in eighth in the East, a full game out of sixth as of this writing. What was once an achievable goal of climbing the fourth and establishing homecourt in the first round now seems like a pipe dream. Rather, the Heat’s focus should be on simply avoiding the risk of the play-in tournament and earning a top-six seed.

The Miami Heat have gotten away from their winning formula and have lost four in a row. Here are three stats that generally determine whether the Heat win or lose.

Basketball Reference’s playoff odds tracker gives Miami a 26.2% chance of a top-six finish. The Ringer’s calculator is a bit more optimistic, giving the Heat a 38% chance.

But those calculations are exactly that, and won’t much matter if the Heat don’t start playing like their playoff lives are at stake. 

Here are three stats the Heat need to monitor over these next 17 games that will determine how many of those games they win, and how many more they will lose.