Erik Spoelstra says Miami Heat excited about 'possibilities with our team'

Charlotte Hornets v Miami Heat
Charlotte Hornets v Miami Heat / Megan Briggs/GettyImages

With the NBA trade deadline having passed without much action from the Miami Heat, head coach Erik Spoelstra said he could sense an exhale from his players at Friday’s practice.

But that sense of relief, Spoelstra said, may also stem from his team's response to a seven-game losing streak by winning four of its last five games.

“I felt a great energy the last 10 days regardless,” Spoelstra said. “And the vet guys understand it’s a business and this time of year can just be really crazy and all the rumors and everything out there.” 

With the NBA trade deadline having passed, the Miami Heat are excited to move on to their playoff push over the next 30 games.

The Heat go into the weekend with a 28-24 record and are a half-game behind the Indiana Pacers for sixth place in the East. Sunday’s home matchup against the top-seeded Boston Celtics will provide a measuring stick for Spoelstra’s team.

“Everybody’s just excited about these final 30 games and the possibilities with our team now,” Spoelstra said.

The last time the Heat faced the Celtics (Jan. 25), they got blown out by 33 points at home. It was clear, then, that Boston was on a higher level.

That was in the midst of the Heat’s longest losing streak of the season and was followed by an intense team meeting and film session a few days later. 

But a couple of weeks can make a big difference. Terry Rozier, acquired last month, is settling into his role as the team’s starting point guard and Spoelstra’s revamped rotations appear to have energized Jimmy Butler, Tyler Herro and Bam Adebayo. 

Since Jan. 31, the Heat have beaten playoff teams in the Sacramento Kings and Orlando Magic, as well as lottery-bound teams in the Washington Wizards and San Antonio Spurs. 

There’s been a noticeable difference among the players in the locker room. 

“We’re really back to having fun again,” Butler said after Wednesday’s win over the Spurs. “We’re smiling, we’re joking around. Whenever we’re having fun, good things always happen.”