The Heat’s first scrimmage game comes this Wednesday against the Kings, which is exciting for one reason. Basketball is back. This will be similar to a preseason game since players will try to get their bodies back in game shape.
Here’s five things to expect from the Heat’s First Scrimmage on Wednesday.
#1: Every player on the roster will be utilized in the Heat’s First Scrimmage.
This became pretty clear after this week’s zoom call with Coach Erik Spoelstra when he said: “Everyone available will probably play.” That means that the minutes will be pretty much split across the board. This allows the team to see which guys are in game shape, and more importantly playoff shape. Coach Spoelstra will also be able to get a good look on who he will be able to trust in a playoff setting. But for now, every player will have a chance to show that they can play a major role on this team.
#2: There’ll be an abundance of -point shooting.
Three-point shooting is something that has become essential due to the game transforming into that style of play. Well, it’s something that we will probably see even more in this format. The G-League and Summer League are two great examples of this since there are more three point attempts in these games than a regular NBA game. For one, these scrimmage games will have the feel of a pickup basketball game, which usually is a lot of shooting. And the second reason is that guys will not be attacking the rim as much when they’re trying to get their legs back under them. These first few scrimmage games may be sloppy, but that’s why they’re having them. Either way, be prepared to see a lot of shooting from beyond the arc, especially with this team.
#3: Spoelstra will “tinker” with different schemes during the Heat’s first scrimmage.
Another thing that Spoelstra’s seemed to discuss on zoom calls is the use of different possible schemes. As he’s said, this format gives them even more time to drill stuff like zone-defense or basic switching principles. We’ll definitely see this in the scrimmage, so Spoelstra can get a feel for what will work in this format. As there’s been a lot of talk about players getting acclimated to this unique style of play, the coaches have as difficult a task as anyone. Coaches will need to be very flexible with their approaches since this is something they’ve never seen.
#4: They will try to find fitting lineups.
This is one of the only things that the Heat have not been able to figure out yet that other teams have. This is only because they weren’t able to see Tyler Herro and Meyers Leonard mix in with the new acquisitions in Jae Crowder and Andre Iguodala. These scrimmage games will give the team the opportunity to try out different lineups that Spoelstra can trust in tough spots. The players also have an idea of what lineups work and what don’t. Meyers Leonard started raving about the defensive versatilities of a lineup with Jimmy Butler-Derrick Jones Jr-Andre Iguodala-Jae Crowder-Bam Adebayo. All the players on this roster are invested in finding the best lineups that will help them win. This is exactly what will be exercised in the scrimmage games.
#5: Bold Prediction: A Gabe Vincent display.
The game against Sacramento on Wednesday will allow all the players on the roster to get some playing time. This includes Gabe Vincent. There has been a lot of talk about guys like Duncan Robinson, Goran Dragic, and Kendrick Nunn playing in this type of environment. Well, the player who has played in this environment most recently is Gabe Vincent. Not only did he play in the G-League recently, he was outstanding.
He won the G-League’s most improved player award for this season. We’ve seen his capabilities of being a lethal shooter. Though it’s been slightly inefficient when he’s gotten playing time this season with the Heat. But, he’s one of those guys that can get hot or that can spark your team. This was displayed in early February against the Clippers when he hit 3 consecutive threes. Don’t be shocked if Gabe goes on a shooting tear in the scrimmage games. He may earn himself some minutes for the regular season and postseason.