4️⃣ The good from New York
I know we don't even remember it, but the Heat had some pretty good moments in Friday's game against the Knicks, especially in the third quarter. Let's go over what went well for the Heat, including an impressive 19-0 run in the first five minutes.
- First possession, aggressive Bam. Two fakes, attacks big Mitchell Robinson, wins space inside and finishes with a comfortable turnaround.
- Pushing pace after a steal, Bam runs the break, finds Highsmith on the wing with the size advantage over Quentin Grimes. Quick move to go inside, spins the other way and earns free-throws.
- Another turnover, Highsmith again making himself available by running out on the wing. Adebayo finds him, Highsmith attacks the middle and dishes to a trailing Lowry, with the Knicks running out to protect the paint.
- Lowry pushes the pace after the rebound, Highsmith is yet again running the floor, cuts behind the defense and hits Josh Richardson in the corner. The Knicks are scrambling, Richardson finds Butler for an open 3 off movement.
- Butler has the ball in the corner in this halfcourt set. Lowry clears space when he sees Butler initiating his work in the post, forcing the help to come from Jalen Brunson further away from the ball, which gives time for Butler to read the floor, turn the other way before Brunson arrives and get the call by winning position over Grimes.
- More half-court offense. The Knicks double Bam, then watch how the ball moves and especially how Butler is screening for the open shooter in the corner, well inside the paint, opening up a ton of space for Highsmith.
- Highsmith matched up with Brunson. The Knicks' guard in isolation, Highsmith denies every possible path to the rim and forces Brunson baseline where he throws an off-balanced, pressured pass. Turnover. Lowry runs and gets another two easy points for Miami.
- After another Knicks miss, the Heat push the pace with Lowry and have an immediate advantage. Butler is the first to run and Richardson is right behind, cutting inside to the same side as Butler. Good pass from Lowry and the Knicks have to foul.
- Simple action with Lowry coming off a Bam screen with Julius Randle on him. Lowry attacks left and quickly stops for a mid-range shot in rhythm after the Knicks had gone on a tiny 5-0 run.
- Empty corner pick-and-roll between Richardson and Bam. Robinson is focused on Bam so Richardson has a path to the rim. He ends up missing, but Adebayo is there for the easy rebound after Robinson had to help on the drive.
The result is a 37-20 quarter that should've been enough for the Heat to go on for the win. The Heat pushed the pace, got everyone involved and found mismatches to punish the Knicks defense. (Side note: Highsmith played all 12 minutes in this quarter and only 1:04 in the fourth.)