Too Early To Judge Miami Heat Because Of Late Injuries To Jimmy Butler, Terry Rozier?

Mar 17, 2024; Detroit, Michigan, USA;  Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo (13) celebrates with guard Terry Rozier (2) after he hits a three point basket as time ran out to win the game against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 17, 2024; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo (13) celebrates with guard Terry Rozier (2) after he hits a three point basket as time ran out to win the game against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports / Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
In this story:

The real Miami Heat did not play against the Boston Celtics last year in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.

That group was only a shell of the actual team.

The Heat were without star Jimmy Butler and point guard Terry Rozier, who were dealing with injuries. So are fans overreacting about Pat Riley being almost silent during free agency for a second straight year?

"We barely got to see Rozier, Butler, [Tyler] Herro and Bam [Adebayo] together at all before everybody got injured at different time, including at the end of the season when they were completely helpless against Boston in the playoffs," ESPN's Zach Lowe said on his podcast this week.

Lowe does have a point.

The Heat were undermanned when it counted last season. Rozier arrived at the trade deadline, so their top players have little time to develop chemistry. The reality is this: when healthy, the Heat have four players who are capable of scoring at least 20 points on any given night.

Not many teams in the East can say that. In fact, not many in the NBA can say that.

Some feel the Heat are just as talented as any team in the league when not saddled with injuries. Just look at the last two seasons. In 2023, they made the Finals despite Herro missing the postseason. Last year it was Rozier and Butler.

This team hasn't had the chance to prove its worth when healthy in the playoffs.

Shandel Richardson is the publisher of Inside The Heat. He can be reached at shandelrich@gmail.com

Follow our updates and coverage on Facebook

Twitter: @ShandelRich


Published
Shandel Richardson

SHANDEL RICHARDSON

Shandel has covered the NBA since 2010, with previous stops at The Athletic and South Florida Sun-Sentinel.  He has covered six NBA Finals, one Super Bowl, the NCAA basketball tournament. He has also been a beat writer for the Miami Hurricanes and contributed on every major beat in South Florida since 2003, including the Miami Dolphins and Miami Marlins. He can also be read in the Sportsbook Review for gambling coverage from around the NBA. A native of Bloomington, Illinois, Shandel attended Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. He's also worked for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and Kansas City Star.  TWITTER: @ShandelRich EMAIL: shandelrich@gmail.com You can subscribe to our YouTube channel here Follow all of our Miami Heat coverage on Facebook here