The Miami Heat basically went through a non-contact practice today, which everyone on the team attended. Afterward, Erik Spoelstra, Jae Crowder, and Andre Iguodala talked with media about their mindset after that game three loss and some minor mistakes they will need to critique. Here’s what was said…
Post-Practice Comment #1:
Jae Crowder spoke about the hot topic heading into into game four on Wednesday, Jimmy Butler. He said, “He’s a guy who is about action. You can tell if he’s in one of those moods where he’s going crazy all game.” He followed that saying that the Heat need a more focused and intense Butler. That is indeed the truth. Many people have been saying that it’s time for Butler to start being a primary scorer, but that’s just not him. What he can do is intensify the team through his on-court actions as Jae mentioned, which would speak more volume than any scoring he could do. He did say at the start that Jimmy doesn’t do a lot of talking pregame, which is why you never know what Jimmy you’re getting heading in. But on Wednesday, I’m pretty sure Jae Crowder and this Heat team know what Jimmy Butler they’re getting.
Post-Practice Comment #2:
Jae also talked about some adjustments they will be making, without going into detail. He said, “I don’t want to give it away through you,” when discussing some match-ups they will be searching for. This may be the spark for not letting the game get away from them early, which he expanded on starting games better as well. He said, “Our spirit is right, our heads are right, our energy is there. We just want to see how we can play a complete game.” There’s no question that this Heat team has been better in the fourth quarter in all three games, but the key is putting that out there in the first three quarters as well. That’s something else that has to do with intensity, since they finally get a burst of energy down the stretch it seems.
Post-Practice Comment #3:
Erik Spoelstra touched on Duncan Robinson for a bit, mostly about the defensive side of the ball. He mentions that he “just has to do things with force and detail.” He knows that teams are going to continually try to attack Duncan no matter what, especially in the post, but he says that “he’s gotten much better at it.” There were many instances that Marcus Smart or Jayson Tatum would take Duncan to the rim, and Miami displayed zero help defense. Duncan struggles one-on-one defensively as it is, and with no help, it seemed problematic. Spo also mentioned that Boston came out with “great force off the dribble” and that they must do a “better job of that.”
Post-Practice Comment #4:
Erik Spoelstra was going into great detail about their young star Bam Adebayo. He said Bam is genuine and real, but on the court he’s as nasty as anyone in the league. “One of the best competitors on this planet.” That statement was on full effect in game three, when Bam was giving it his all even when they trailed by 20 points. Jimmy even recognized it post-game on Saturday, saying “He did everything he could to try to will us to this win all game long.” Spo also transitioned into selecting Bam on draft night, saying “He was the guy we wanted to take. We were just hoping he was going to be there.” He then said that he’s the “Anti-AAU player,” since he never played AAU basketball. Spo ends with “He’s wired differently, which we like.”
Post-Practice Comment #5:
Andre Iguodala touched on what it has been like to mentor Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, and others. He said, “I had really good vets…I like to take no credit at all.” He also said, “Once you master something, it’s your duty to teach it. So it’s my duty.” Bam Adebayo having Udonis Haslem as a mentor and Jimmy Butler taking Tyler Herro under his wing has shown to be very essential for this young group. Andre also talked about his recent play, which has been tough due to some issues with back spasms. He said, “One thing you don’t want to be is a detriment to the team.” He says that the Bubble “has been more good days than bad days,” but today is one of those tough days. He finishes off with “We are really built for this environment, it really puts us in an advantage.”