Observations and other notes of interest from Saturday night’s 129-100 loss to the Brooklyn Nets:
– For weeks, since the All-Star break, the Heat have been skating by on their offense.
– But in the playoffs (or play-in) more will be needed on the other side of the ball.
– Because against an opponent that moves the ball, slow-footed is not the best footing.
– So an expiration date on Kevin Love as the starting power forward?
– Getting back to Caleb Martin?
– At times Saturday, the Heat defense was atrocious.
– With all the Nets needing to do was move that ball.
– Yes, size helps against offensive rebounding.
– And that was a struggle Saturday, too.
– But a move has to be made with the defense.
– Saturday’s third quarter said it all.
– There was no there there.
– Two words not often heard about the Heat: defensively inept.
– Lately, the words have been hard to avoid.
– Even when masked by winning.
– It again was the Heat opening with Bam Adebayo, Love, Jimmy Butler, Tyler Herro and Gabe Vincent.
– With the start, Adebayo tied Brian Grant for 11th on the Heat all-time list.
– The game was the 750th in the regular season of Butler’s career.
– Haywood Highsmith and Max Strus were the first two off the Heat bench.
– That meant Love shifting to center and no need for Omer Yurtseven.
– At this point, one has to wonder what is next for Yurtseven.
– Because it’s not as if he can fix the defense.
– Martin and Kyle Lowry followed for the Heat.
– To make it nine deep.
– Without Victor Oladipo.
– Whose defensive peskiness might have to be reconsidered.
– Lowry moved past Michael Jordan and Marvin Williams for 99th place on the NBA all-time games list and tied Byron Scott and Charles Barkley for 97th.
– Butler’s sixth free-throw attempt moved him past Julius Erving for 84th on the NBA all-time list.
– Love’s first defensive rebound moved him past Marcus Camby for 32nd on the NBA all-time list.
– Vincent’s first 3-pointer tied Keith Askins for 19th on the Heat all-time list.
– Lowry’s fourth assist tied Muggsy Bogues for 24th on the NBA all-time list.
– Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, who has spent offseasons studying with the Nova Southeastern coaching staff, watched the Sharks win the NCAA Division II while he was working out ahead of Saturday’s game.
– “That’s incredible, really, to go undefeated and then winning the championship,” Spoelstra said. “They were a lot of fun to watch. It’s hard not to like that style of play, how much they press and run and score a ton of points. But congratulations to all of them at Nova. That’s a year for the ages and something that they’ll take for the rest of their lives.”
– Spoelstra added, “It was really fun to even see those practices at the beginning before they even started training camp.”
– Even with having been to the play-in tournament last season with the Nets, Brooklyn coach Jacque Vaughn downplayed Saturday’s stakes.
– “Well, you see how this March Madness is and you’re one and you’re done,” Vaughn said pregame. “And that’s part of it. I have not discussed any of the standings with this group. Really we have gone day to day and try to get a win.”
– Vaughn added. “I haven’t tried to complicate it more than that. Talked about the standings not at all.”
Source: Berkshire mont
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