Welcome to Guts Check by Greg Sylvander. A weekly Miami Heat column aimed at bringing readers my perspective on all the hot topics surrounding the team. You can expect a regular balance of sourced information, analysis and feeling the Heat down in my soul. In the name of Trusting the Spocess, let’s call these weekly columns position-less.
Since we last touched base:
- Won at Toronto 121-110
- Lost at Boston 112-93
- Won vs Washington 112-103
- Won in OT vs Chicago 110-105
- 3rd in the Eastern Conference, 17-6 .739
Put away your trade machines.
I know you love a good transaction, but now is not the time. Have the guts to be patient.
Until you see this group lose a handful of games in a short window or struggle for a month straight, the Heat is inclined to stand pat. As they should be. No Kevin Love proposals please. Even Blake Griffin and Chris Paul are no longer viable by my view.
Everything is going exactly to plan.
The goal was to have one star attract another star with the help of a core group that checks all the boxes. The ascension of Bam Adebayo and inevitable rise to stardom from Tyler Herro will make this Heat group as desirable as any Heat roster that went into free agency with max space to offer a superstar ever (aside when they had space to offer three maxes, but let’s exclude that for the rest of eternity)
Pat Riley is going to keep eyes open on the trade market. Particularly for any star players that may quietly get shopped and eventually shake loose that would accelerate this build. Or maybe they look at adding a win now vet that doesn’t compromise 2021. That said, reality remains that the type of player worthy of compromising 2021 flexibility is not likely to become available. Any option is more stop gap than gap fill.
This is about setting the table.
Head into summer 2021 free agent meetings with Riley & staff, flanked by Jimmy, Bam & Tyler. Nunn, Robinson, Silva, Okpala all ready to contribute. A core group that exudes this type of connection is noticed by other players.
I can tell you definitively that it was noticed by Bradley Beal.
He won’t be the last player to have that imprint left upon them.
While the urge will always be there to consider names like Kevin Love, Blake Griffin or Chris Paul being potential “missing pieces”, this urge will only intensify the better this team plays. Ignore it, suppress it until it dissolves.
Riley has been known to push all his chips to the middle the table, so any star that even becomes remotely available must be considered. I get that. But consider Riley’s chips not quite stacked high enough yet for him to go all in.
The notion that a Giannis-Miami pairing would end up being the best situation for the best player in the league is still a speculative theory all things considered.
By next December it may appear a no brainer.
The other no brainer? Trusting this organization to strike when the time is right in this scenario.
For now, enjoy THIS team. If you have the guts.