More of the same is the theme for the Miami Heat in 2018. If you look through the team's depth chart, you'll see a lot of familiar faces. This is because the team neither lost, nor added any players of significance. The Heat finished the 2017-18 season with a 44-38 record. While this finish would have left the team outside the playoff hunt in the West, this was good for a 6th place finish in the East. The truth in the matter is that the team likes their back-up players and feels they are deep and consistent within role filling. Goran Dragic and Tyler Johnson continued to thrive off the momentum that would shift from starter to bench player. This two-guard combination also saw instance that left both players on the court, leaving the defense scurrying to cover both point guards. The grit and determination of center Hassan Whiteside was criticized heavily last season. His passion for the game seemed to diminish at times, leaving minutes for Bam Adebayo to claim. Adebayo rolled with his chances and solidified a heavy dosage of minutes in 2017-18. Whiteside took notice to the strong output Adebayo was putting forth, so hopefully this will fuel his growth into one of the league's best defensive centers once again.
|Point Guard PG|
|Shooting Guard SG|
|Small Forward SF|
|Power Forward PF|
|Point Guard PG||
|Shooting Guard SG||
|Small Forward SF||
|Power Forward PF|
A: Dwayne Wade has been the face of the Miami Heat since 2003. A few seasons of ring-chasing in Chicago and Cleveland returned Wade to the franchise that helped his career flourish. Wade came back late last season, but the team immediately started dolling out minutes in the 20-range. This was promising for the 36-year-old the has cited a history with knee problems. A strong off-season might climb his minutes and his presence creates higher usage rates for any of the talents alongside him.
A: The team was placed in a favorable position this year because they retained all of their guards. Pure shooters in Dion Waiters and Wayne Ellington keep the conversation at the wings locked-in, but both players come off the bench, creating limited presence within the paint in two-guard sets. Look for Josh Richardson to share some starts with one of these two players, so that the team can place a favorable dribble-drive scorer in the second unit.
A: This is the team's biggest question entering the season. They enjoy the blossoming prospect they have in Adebayo, but they haven't fully released him for smaller minute stints. If the team is willing to cut the Kentucky product loose this season, it is hard to believe they wouldn't try to move Whiteside in favor of lightening their cap space and chasing some of the bigger free agents in the 2018-19 off-season.