5 Things The Heat Need To Make A Deep Playoff Run

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For the Heat, the 2014-15 season was filled with injuries; and even though the Heat finished with 37 wins in a woeful Eastern Conference, the missed the playoffs by a single game. Missing the playoffs, however, turned out to be a blessing in disguise as the Heat were able to retain their top ten protected pick(owed to Philadelphia from the Lebron James trade). The pick, turned out to be consensus top five, and arguably the best small forward in the draft Justise Winslow. Winslow was a massive steal at ten, and he’s projected as a future cornerstone at small forward for Miami. Along with an almost flawless draft for Riley and Co. the Heat were able to resign both PG Goran Dragic and SG Dwyane Wade to a 5 year, $85 million, and a 1 year, $20 million contract respectively. In addition to those signings, the Heat also lured both SG/SF and dunk maestro Gerald Green, and C/PF Amar’e Stoudemire for the vet minimum to bolster a bench that ranked 28th in the league in points per game at only 26.6. Here are five things the Heat need if they want to snag a top seed in the east, as well as make a deep playoff run.

5.) Health

This one goes without saying. The Heat are going to need their players healthy if they want to make some noise this season, and that doesn’t just go for Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Josh McRoberts. Bosh missed about half of the season last year with blood clots in his lungs, and has yet to even set foot on the court alongside Dragic. If Bosh can stay healthy for the full season coming up he could very likely emerge as an MVP candidate. Before being lost for the season, Bosh was averaging 21.1ppg(4th among PF) and 7.0rpg(14th among PF) on 46.0% shooting while draining over 37% of his threes. Bosh and Whiteside should make for a formidable scoring and defense combo down low. Wade, after missing 20 games, has looked to be in amazing shape over the offseason. Wade is instrumental to Miami’s success, after a season in which he scored 21.5ppg(3rd among SG) and 4.8apg(5th among SG). Dragic and Wade will make for an explosive backcourt tandem, and will become a defensive nightmare for opposing teams. A healthy starting five of Dragic, Wade, Deng Bosh, and Whiteside in the playoffs will make Miami a team nobody will want to face. They pose a matchup nightmare almost everywhere on the court and game planning to defend all five will keep even the best defensive coaches up all night trying to figure out a way to slow them down. Even a healthy bench will be a big boon to Miami’s hopes of contention. Josh McRoberts, who signed a 4yr $23m contract in the summer of 2014, was lost for the season after appearing in just 17 games for the Heat after undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus. McRoberts is another player who Miami needs to be healthy, as he offers solid efficient scoring, decent 3PT shooting, and superb passing for a big man.

Click “Next” to see the number four key to the Heat making a deep playoff run!

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