The Miami Heat has experienced a solid early start to the 2015-16 regular season but we’ve seen flickers of chemistry issues within a funky roster makeup. The team is fourth in the East at 18-12 but a mere two games separates the Hawks in second and the Pistons in ninth.
Miami is a team that ESPN’s Tom Haberstroh thinks “can finish anywhere from second in the east to out of the playoffs.”
“I think this is a team that’s going to finish in the bottom half of the Eastern Conference playoff picture,” Haberstroh said on Zaslow and Joy, “because they don’t have an identity.”
He talked about how some pieces on the Heat thrive playing fast like Goran Dragic and Gerald Green whereas someone like Dwyane Wade is better served playing the slow game.
Asked whether he’d feel comfortable giving a max contract to Hassan Whiteside, Haberstroh made some interesting points.
“I think he could get a max offer this offseason,” he said. “I think his box score numbers demand that but I do think that when you get Hassan Whiteside there’s just a lot more than just box score. It’s a lot of team defense issues and he doesn’t commit to himself. I think when you have a shot-block leader you can live with that as long as you know that it’s gonna pull your hair out as a coach when he’s not rotating correctly or he’s fouling when he’s not supposed to. I think these are things, kind of the gamble you take with Hassan Whiteside is he’s gonna get those blocked shots, start fast breaks but ultimately it’s very hard to build a defense around him when it’s just there are a lot of holes in it outside of those shot blocks.”
Could we see an active Pat Riley as the Trade Deadline approaches?