Five Takeaways from Heat’s Win Over Jazz

The Miami Heat clearly needed this one…

Another clutch game down the stretch ends in a big Tyler Herro three with a minute to go.

Some takeaways…

#1: What’s been needed from Gabe Vincent the most showcased early on…

When it comes to early positives, Gabe Vincent came out played well early on. Why was that? Well that was the game-plan considering the Jazz were planting Lauri Markkanen on Vincent one-on-one. He clearly wasn’t afraid to attack that right out the gates, leading into 3 early triples off spot-up movement jumpers. But that isn’t even what’s been needed most from him. I’m going to talk about the defensive issues next, but he was everywhere defensively in that opening stint from an individual perspective, which is what we were used to last year. Point of attack hound who obtained a certain level of screen navigation that this team truly needed. We’ve seen less consistency with that this season it feels, which is why quick flashes showcase the real need from him heading down the stretch of the season.

#2: Heat defensive slippage coming from two Jazz areas in first half…

It feels like it’s the same thing every night when I illustrate the early first half defense for the Heat. Positional slippage is the main surprise for me, since it’s obvious the isolation defense won’t be superior when eyeing down this roster. But what has continually kept this Heat defense intact over recent seasons is the strong rotations, wise close-outs, and on-a-string type defense. Right now, that’s not the case, as this Heat team has been the 23rd best defense in first quarters post All Star break. To take it a step forward, the opposing formula this time around was even more odd, as two players combined for 41 points: Lauri Markkanen and Simone Fontecchio. The common thread still comes back to a drop-off in their specialty: Markkanen off secondary attacks and Fontecchio off spot-up movement threes. Two elements that reflect team defense and positional stuff. A weird, weird trend.

#3: The current rotation at (almost) full health.

Just to note what things looked like for the Heat roster wise, the one thing I was curious about was the rotation tonight. Erik Spoelstra said pregame that Gabe Vincent would continue to get the start, as he wants to ramp up the minutes for Kyle Lowry slowly, but the question became: Do they go 10? Will somebody be cut from the 9 man rotation? Duncan Robinson or Haywood Highsmith (who are the 11th and 12th looking in)? Well, the answer was that the Heat went 10. An early entrance for Omer Yurtseven, followed by Max Strus. Caleb Martin, Kyle Lowry, and Victor Oladipo came soon after, as we saw a very short stint of an all bench lineup. Way to take the non-Butler and Bam minutes up a notch (lol). For full-on rhythm purposes from both a coaching and player perspective, I’m not the biggest fan of 10, especially when depth hasn’t been your friend. My thing to watch is that if they inevitably bump down to 9, what group of guys does that consist of?

#4: Some Bam Adebayo slippage?

The hot topic over the recent stretch has been the back seat Bam Adebayo has taken along the way for Miami’s struggles. We keep saying Jimmy Butler is looking around an empty room at the moment, but Bam Adebayo was this group’s high level playing incredible basketball for the first 2 and a half quarters of the season. But lately, the effectiveness and comfort doesn’t seem to be there. The usual dotted line/ free throw line jumpers aren’t on high volume, as more stuff has included entry passes baseline and things going toward the rim. Why is that? Well that could have something to do with the spacing purposes in the new lineup with Kevin Love, as Caleb Martin used to be the baseline roamer and rim diver in those lineups. But it’s not about fit, he’s just flat at the moment. The defense hasn’t been as full force in your face either, which is the real element that makes you look twice. Late in the third they got him going on the break a bit in transition for easy ones into an eventual offensive board and put-back to finish the quarter, which is necessary when he’s pressing in the half-court. They need the pre All Star break Bam Adebayo again. Badly.

#5: Another late-game walk-through…

Around 8 minutes left in the fourth quarter of another close game to nobody’s surprise, the Heat were getting a decent stretch from Victor Oladipo. This came just after a couple of relief threes from Kyle Lowry that was much needed, but Oladipo hit a big spot-up three himself. Shortly after he caught his man sleeping and floated baseline off a cut for an easy lay-up. For this offense to flow correctly, that movement from him is needed immensely. Fast forward to 4 minutes to go, Jimmy Butler has a miscommunication with Bam Adebayo on a cut for a turnover, Jazz go in other direction for a lob to Walker Kessler. Jazz go up 2, Heat call timeout. What else would the play-call be? A Jimmy Butler triple on the left wing. A little over a minute to go, Talen Horton Tucker hits a tough turnaround to go up 1. The next possession, Tyler Herro does Tyler Herro things with a step back 3 to take the lead by 2. Gabe Vincent draws an offensive foul on the other end after review, but Heat come up short with a Herro tie up. Heat force a miss on other end, as Bam comes down with the rebound to ice the game with free throws.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *