Takeaways from the Wizards Loss

Wade and Dragic

By far, the greatest achievement Dec. 7’s game was getting to see Dwayne Wade and Goran Dragic work together. The two each brought in 9 assists. To be honest, this is one of my greatest points of pride with this team. We have great talent, but every game is a team-game.

With little surprise, Wade lead the team in scoring with 26 points. 10 of those points were scored against Otto Porter. Wade was like a shark on the court, aggressively hunting down and converting a number of midrange jumpers, floaters, and banks-shots, while also helping out his teammates score. Wade was completely on his game.

Dragic performed remarkably himself. His half-court work was on point and the corner three that he nailed in the fourth corner was impressive. With 4:06 left on the clock, he managed a sweet pass to Wade who went in for the shot.

Other Notes

With nine rebounds, Chris Bosh’s game was also in pretty great shape.  Grom the get-go, Whiteside was doling out great frontcourt work, and he had some pretty impressive dunks to his name. Noticeably, Whiteside made a great slam at 2:26 in the second quarter.

The Three-point Problem

With more than a minute on the clock, Bradley Beal went up near the rim and then lost the ball and touched it without a defender touching it (although both Bosh and Dragic were close). Shortly thereafter, Neal made the three. It’s unfortunate that Beal’s traveling play went uncalled. Yes, the final deficit was 11 points. But Beal’s traveling 3-pointer scored with more than a minute on the clock, allowed the Wizard’s to basically score 5 when they should have only scored 2. I don’t need to tell you how every point counts. But what I will say is that Chris Bosh faced his second ejection of his career just shortly after that three-pointer was deemed legitimate. It can be demoralizing to see a violation go uncalled.

Moving Forward

Calls set aside, the Wizard’s brought their game. I’m looking forward to tonight’s game @Charlote.

Let’s do this.


Miami Heat Open Season with a Win Over Charlotte

The Miami Heat opened the 2015-2016 season with a win at home against the Charlotte Hortets 104-94. The Heat started Dwyane Wade and Goran Dragic in the backcourt, Luol Deng and Chris Bosh in the frontcourt, and Hassan Whiteside at center. The Hornets send out Kemba Walker and P.J. Hairston in the backcourt, Nicolas Batum and Marvin Williams in the frontcourt, and Al Jefferson at center.

The Heat had stellar play from their top 2 stars Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade. Bosh finished the night with 21 points and 10 rebounds while Wade had 20 points and 5 assists. Off the bench, Gerald Green gave the Heat 30 quality minutes scoring 19 points. Jeremy Lin, a new guard with the Hornet came off the bench to score 17 points on 5-10 shooting. Walker added 19 points while Jefferson chipped in with 17. Justise Winslow had a great slam over three Hornets. Check it out below.

The Heat looked good together. Ideally, they’ll want to see more from Hassan Whiteside, the 7 foot center who came on big last year. Whiteside had just 4 points and 6 rebounds after averaging 11.8 points and 10.0 rebounds last year. Another player they’ll want to step up is Goran Dragic. Dragic signed a max deal this summer but contributed just 8 points and 6 assists.



Miami Heat Enter Training Camp

The Miami Heat open 2015’s training camp with a lot of familiar faces. The Heat return super stars Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. They also return recent key additions like Luol Deng and Goran Dragic. Josh McRoberts, an offseason signing from last summer should be getting healthy for this coming season. Let’s take a look at some key additions as well as some training camp players hoping to make the regular season roster.

amare stoudemire miami

Stoudemire joins the Heat

Amare Stoudemire
Once upon a time Stoudemire was a bonafide stud. You can count on him for 20 points and roughly 10 rebounds a night. He has since had many injuries and has aged to the point where he’s a shade of himself. He split last season between the New York Knicks and Dallas Mavericks averaging 11.5 points and 5.6 rebounds in roughly 20 minutes a game. He’s no longer a starting power forward but is great for spot starts. He can bring a lot of energy and intensity off the bench for the Heat. He’s a lock to make the regular season roster.

Gerald Green
Gerald Green has had an interesting tenure in the NBA. Originally a 2005 1st round pick by the Boston Celtics, Green went onto win the 2007 Slam Dunk Contest. He had a rocky rest of the way in the NBA and eventually fell out of the league by the end of the 2009 season. After some stints overseas, Green joined the D-League and played well. The New Jersey Nets gave him an opportunity via a D-League call-up and Green impressed. He showed he could drive, shoot from outside and defend. His short time in New Jersey allowed him to get reserve roles with the Pacers and Suns. He should provide great athleticism off the bench for Miami.

Hopefuls looking to make the 15 man roster include the following:
Center Keith Benson – Signed a 1 year minimum non-guaranteed deal.
Guard Corey Hawkins – Signed 1 year minimum non-guaranteed deal.
Guard Tyler Johnson – Played last season for Miami. Is in the 2nd year of his deal which is partially guaranteed
Forward James Ennis – Played last season for Miami. Is in the 2nd year of a 3 year deal but salary is guaranteed if he makes opening night roster.
Forward Greg Whittington – Signed a 1 year minimum non-guaranteed deal.
Guard Tre Kelley – Signed a year minimum non-guaranteed deal.
Guard Josh Richardson – 2015 2nd round pick signed a 3 year deal that is partially guaranteed but fully guaranteed for this season.


Key Contributors for the Miami Heat in 2015-2016

Everyone knows the Miami Heat have Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. If the Heat are to be successful in the upcoming season, they’ll need them to be at the top of their games and stay healthy. To contend for a title, they’ll need a supporting cast to build off of last season or step up and become a bigger contributor. Let’s take a look at who some of these players can be.

Hassan Whiteside – Center

Whiteside burst onto the scene last season after spending most of his career in the D-League. Originally an early 2nd round pick by the Sacramento Kings in 2010, the 7 foot Whiteside played in just 19 career NBA games prior to his call-up to the Heat. In 48 games and 32 starts for the Heat, Whiteside averaged 11.8 points, 10.0 rebounds, 2.6 blocks, while shooting 63% from the floor in just 23.8 minutes a night. He’ll need to continue on this path next season for the Heat to contend in the ever-so improving Eastern Conference.

Goran Dragic – Guard

Goran Dragic

Goran Dragic

Dragic was acquired last season in a trade with the Phoenix Suns and resigned with the Heat following this past season. Dragic brings an interesting dynamic. With a backcourt of Wade and Dragic, you don’t really have a true point guard. But what you do have is two guys who can both handle point guard duties and bring something else to the table. Dragic is a great outsider shooter and Wade is a slasher. He’s a proficient shooter from the field, three point range, and the free throw line and can also rebound well for the guard position.

Amar’e Stoudemire – Center/Power Forward

With Amar’e Stoudemire signing for the veterans minimum at $1.5 million, the Heat are essentially trying to catch lightning in a bottle. A low risk, high reward type deal, if Stoudemire can return to All-Star form then the Heat have themselves a great value pick and a formidable player to add to a team nucleus that consists of Dwyane Wade, Goran Dragic, Chris Bosh, Luol Deng, Hassan Whiteside, Chris Anderson, and 1st round pick Justise Winslow. If he doesn’t pan out, well the Heat are still rather deep with big men that can play with Anderson, Whiteside, Bosh, Haslem, and McRoberts.


Miami Heat Cutting Costs

With the Miami Heat now a season under their belt without LeBron James, they now see how talented their team is. Many teams don’t mind paying luxury tax if they’re a sure bet for a deep run into the playoffs. However, Miami learned that they are no longer that kind of team. With that said, the Heat have been looking to shed costs where they deem necessary. They have made a few moves over the last week that have helped them get closer to the luxury tax line. Let’s take a look at some of these moves.

Heat Trade Napier to Magic

The Miami Heat traded Shabazz Napier to the Orlando Magic in a lopsided deal. Napier, a former 1st round pick was sent for just a protected 2nd round pick in 2016. The move was a salary dump trade for the Heat who currently have Goran Dragic and Mario Chalmers under contract to play point guard.

Heat Trade Zoran Dragic to Celtics

While the Heat re-signed Goran Dragic, they shipped his younger brother Zoran to the Boston Celtics. Zoran came to the NBA last season joining his brother in Phoenix. However, at the trade deadline the two were both shipped to Miami. Miami is now sending Zoran and a 2020 protected 2nd round pick and cash to Boston for a 2019 protected 2nd round pick.

Heat Waive Henry Walker

You may remember him as Bill Walker from his time with the Knicks and Celtics but Bill returned to the NBA last season as Henry Walker. Walker’s contract for year two was due to pay him $1.1 million, $100,000 of which would become guaranteed if he was on the roster by August 1st. The Heat decided to waive him.

These three moves save the Heat roughly $11 million in salary and luxury tax penalty payments.


NBA Draft Night

Tonight marks the 2015 NBA Draft. A total of 60 players will be selected in tonights draft. While 60 players will be selected, not all will sign immediately for the 2015-2016 season. The Miami Heat hold the 10th pick and 40th pick in the draft. The Heat have a bunch of solid options at 10 whereas at 40, that could be 1 of many different options. Let’s take a look at who they could go with.

Devin Booker – Kentucky

Raanan Katz - devin booker

Devin Booker

Devin Booker is a product of the John Calipari one and done system. Standing at 6’6 Booker possesses the size to play and also has the shooting stroke to play shooting guard at the NBA level. During his one year at Kentucky, Booker averaged 10.0 points in just 21.5 minutes a game while shooting 41% from the three point line. The knock on Booker is if he may be too one dimensional. A couple of years back a similar player, Doron Lamb, came out of Kentucky as a great shooter but didn’t last long in the NBA due to his inability to do much else on the floor.

Stanley Johnson – Arizona

Stanley Johnson was a highly touted player coming out of high school and he showed why at Arizona. In his lone season with the Wildcats, Johnson averaged 13.8 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.5 steals, while shooting 37% from the three point line. Johnson stands at 6’7 and 245 pounds, a great fit to play the small forward at the NBA level. With Luol Deng likely looking for a new deal, Johnson would be a great pick for the Miami Heat.

Sam Dekker – Wisconsin

Sam Dekker is an interesting prospect. While some scouts have worried about his perimeter game, Dekker has shot well for teams in recent workouts putting that worry to rest. At 6’9 220 pounds, Dekker possesses great size and length in order to play small forward in the NBA. He shot 53% from the floor on a great Wisconsin team that was constantly tested by top 25 programs. He averaged 13.9 points, 5.5 rebounds, and .5 steals and blocks per game. He too would be a great replacement for Luol Deng.


Miami Heat Trade Updates

With just about 15 games left to play in the NBA regular season, the Miami Heat are holing onto a #7 slot in the eastern conference. The Heat hope to hang onto their playoff position, especially with the addition of the Dragic brothers, Goran and Zoran for Danny Granger, Justin Hamilton and two first round draft picks: one in 2017 and another in 2021. The Heat also Traded Norris Cole, Shawne Williams and Justin Hamilton to the New Orleans Hornets for guard John Salmons. The team also signed another guard in Tyler Johnson earlier this month. Below is a slide show of the Miami Heat players before the trade.

Raanan Katz and the Miami Heat Roster:


Miami Heat Fans Rank #1 in Forbes for Best Fans in the NBA

Raanan Katz Miami Heat FansForbes recently did a study on the NBA’s best fans. They use five variables in their algorithm to determine which team has the best fans. The first variable is hometown crowd reach, which is a percentage of local individuals who listened, watched, or attended a game in the last year. The other variables consist of three years worth of television ratings, three years of capacity reached for an attendance based approach, three years of merchandise sales, and social media followers, which is the combination of Twitter followers and Facebook likes. There are also factors that count in behavioral variables such as loyalty and television ratings. Social media reach was calculated as a percent of the city population. Dual city teams had their local population cut in half to account for multiple team options in a single city.

This year, the Miami Heat was calculated to have the best fans in the NBA. Although LeBron James leaving the Miami Heat might have something to do with their high score, the Heat fans have been ranked in the top 5 ever since 2004. With Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Shaquille O’Neal; the team’s merchandise sales have been among the top since 2004. The Heat are ranked 3rd in the social media metric with both the 3rd highest combined Twitter followers/Facebook likes and total percentage of social media followers combined with the population of Miami.

After LeBron left, the teams capacity and merchandise sales still ranked towards the top of the league. To even further prove the team’s momentum, Fox’s Sun Sports signed a network contract with the Miami Heat that pays triple today’s rights fee and is signed through the 2025 season.


The list of the top 10 best NBA fans:


1)   Miami Heat

2)   Oklahoma City Thunder

3)   San Antonio Spurs

4)   Chicago Bulls

5)   Los Angeles Lakers

6)   Boston Celtics

7)   Dallas Mavericks

8)   Indiana Pacers

9)   Portland Trail Blazers

10)  Los Angeles Clippers


Miami Heat’s Road Woes

Raanan Katz Miami Heat WadeThe Miami Heat are on quite the skid as of recent losing five of their last six games. Throughout their first 18 games, the Heat have struggled with continuity. They have used six different starting lineups in their first 18 games. Dwyane Wade has recently missed seven games due to a hamstring injury, and Luol Deng injured his right hand, leaving him questionable for a couple of recent games.

They started off their losing skid against the Golden State Warriors. Stephen Curry scored 40 points, 24 of which came from 3-ponters. Chris Bosh was the Heat’s leading scorer, raking up 26 points, but that was not enough as they lost 114-97.

The Miami Heat then traveled to New York City and beat the Knicks 86-97. Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade both returned to their teams starting lineup. Wade scored an impressive 27 points, leading his team to a comfortable victory.

The Heat moved their way South to play the Washington Wizards at the Verizon Center. The Heat could not contain John Wall as he scored 18 points and 13 assists. Chris Bosh lead the head with 21 points and 8 rebounds, but that was not enough as the Heat ended up losing 86-107.

The Heat then played the red-hot Atlanta Hawks and put up a good fight at home. Luol Deng injured his right hand in the middle of the game and was taken out. Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh lead the team by scoring 28 and 27 respectively. The Heat were shooting 56% from the field, which normally would result in a win. Unfortunately, they were playing the Atlanta Hawks, who have won 6 of their last 7. The Heat lost 102-112.

Dwyane Wade continued to play well on the road, scoring 28 points against the Bucks, but that did not help the team turn out a victory as the Heat still lost 85-109.

Sunday night was a similar turnout. The Heat traveled to Memphis and lost to the Grizzlies 87-103. Dwyane Wade scored 25 points.

The Heat continue their road streak tonight against Phoenix. They then travel to Denver and Utah.


With a team suddenly limited by injuries, #Heat coach Erik Spoelstra finds himself relying on Mario Chalmers

By Joe

HEAT (5-5) at NETS (4-5), 7:30 p.m., Barclays Center, Sun Sports/FM 104.3, AM 790 and WAQI 710 AM (Spanish)

LINE: Nets by 6 1/2 (Opened at 5 1/2.)

OFFICIALS: Derrick Stafford, Josh Tiven and James Williams

WHY WATCH: To see if the Heat can overcome all these injuries. Dwyane Wade (hamstring) and Josh McRoberts (foot) are both out and now Luol Deng is questionable with an injured wrist.

SPO-SPEAK: “We’re not making any excuses for injuries or guys in and out of the lineup. That’s this league. What we talked about today at shootaround, welcome to the NBA. Every team is dealing with it. If they’re not dealing with it now, then they’re dealing with it at some point. So, it’s how you manage that and how you respond. Are you getting better or getting worse?”

IS MARIO CHALMERS A STARTER OR BACKUP? “You have to get to know your team, and we need Rio to be out there, so I’m trying to balance him to do both. He needs to play 35 minutes plus. He needs to start the game, but he also needs to be our back-up [shooting guard]. Welcome to our team.”

…read more

Source:: Raanan Katz – Miami Herald – Miami Heat