3 Things Heat fans should root for, 2 to root against to close season

Here are five things Miami Heat fans should be rooting for as the team makes its final playoff push.

Indiana Pacers v Miami Heat
Indiana Pacers v Miami Heat / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
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1. Root against more injuries

It wasn’t a switch that flipped for the Heat last year, it was their 3-point shooting. The Heat went from making 34.4% of their 3s in the regular season (the fourth-worst rate in the league) to 38% in the playoffs (the best rate in the league). 

As the Heat aim to claw into the playoffs for the second straight year, what’s the switch that can flip for the Heat this time?

It’s not 3-point shooting. Miami is shooting a dependable 37% from beyond the arc this season. 

Perhaps this time, it’s health. The Heat have been extra unlucky with injuries this season. They have had the fifth-most games lost due to injury this season and have been forced to use 35 different starting lineups. Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro have played only 21 games with each other all season.

It could be argued that we have yet to see this team at full strength. The presumed preferred starting lineup of Terry Rozier, Herro, Butler, Nikola Jovic and Adebayo haven’t played a single possession together.

The good news is that lineups with Rozier, Butler, Jovic and Adebayo are out-scoring opponents by 11.5 points per 100 possessions, according to Cleaning the Glass. Herro is ramping up to return and Duncan Robinson is back from a back injury. Kevin Love has also returned from his heel injury and should help steady Miami’s second unit.

The Heat haven’t been healthy all season, but perhaps they will get healthy at just the right time and take everyone by surprise again.

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