The Miami Heat is roughly one-fifth of the way through its regular season schedule and it’s still too early to make any firm judgements on what this can team be by season’s end (still mostly likely a playoff team). But at 7-9 there are some early troubling signs Pat Riley’s decision this summer to bring back 11 players from last year’s 41-41 team and invest large chunks of the team’s salary cap in future years to a handful of players might have been a mistake. It’s a lot to ask for a team with a couple new pieces to gel from the get-go and pick up where it left off when it finished with the second-best record in the league (30-11) over the second half of last season, but the Heat’s uneven play between the first and second half of games this season is concerning. Though Miami has maintained itself as one of the better defenses in the league, ranking ninth in opponent field goal percentage and 14th in defensive rating (103.9), it isn’t elite like it was a year ago. The team’s consistent struggles in the second half of games (Miami ranks 30th in scoring, field goal percentage and three-point shooting) has been baffling for coach Erik Spoelstra. So has the overall increase in turnovers, which have gone up from 13.4 per game (11th last season) to 16.6 per game (26th).
Is it too early to judge construction of Heat’s roster? Early returns are troubling
Miami Herald | Nov 23