Predicting the Heat's perfect starting lineup after ideal offseason

If Miami ends up pulling off a perfect offseason, this is what their starting lineup could look like come opening night.
Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat
Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
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After their 2023 run to the NBA Finals as the eighth seed, the 2023-24 season felt like a massive disappointment for the Miami Heat. Being just three wins away from an NBA championship less than a year ago placed some obvious and reasonable expectations on this team to make a deep run yet again this past season.

Instead, the Heat wound up in the same eight seed spot as the season prior, but this time they were heavily outmatched against the Boston Celtics in the first round. Unable to replicate their miracle run from the previous year, Miami went home early with some major questions to answer. Namely, how can they take advantage of playing in what is decidedly the weaker of the NBA's two conferences?

One way will of course be upgrading the roster this summer. There have already been several names suggested as potential free agent targets for the Heat, and addressing key deficiencies could help this team get back to being a consistent regular season winner going forward. If Miami pulls off a dream offseason, this is what their starting lineup could look like come October.

Center: Bam Adebayo

There will be plenty of tempting names on the free agent market this summer, but one position the Heat will not want to adjust is center. Bam Adebayo remains one of the best defensive big men in the association, and he has obviously been one of the staples of this team's success over the last half-decade.

Bam's ability to be one of the few players in the league capable of switching 1-through-5 on defense is an incredibly valuable skill, and one that translates to the postseason in a big way. He creates an instant matchup problem for nearly any of Miami's opponents the moment he steps on the floor.

We know that Pat Riley will do whatever is necessary to build this roster into a winner, and the only way Bam could conceivably be moved is if a massive offer for a big-name star comes in. Even then, he would likely be hesitant to pull the trigger in the name of retaining consistency.