For the past few days, the Heat have taken control of the Eastern Conference, which makes sense as Erik Spoelstra’s players have been solid and consistent since the start of the season. But it’s also a scary prospect as Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler missed much of the first half of the season, and it feels like Miami has yet to show their full potential.
The franchise still has a few weeks to improve, but obviously they are not sulking their pleasure of being the best team in the East after almost 50 games.
“The competition is tough, so it’s fun”, explains the Heat coach au Sun Sentinel. “You shouldn’t be obsessed with the rankings and everyone reminds you that you have to arrive in good health for the playoffs. But when you have six months of the regular season to play, you have to find reasons to motivate yourself. Competitors love big challenges. There will still be change in a few months, but the guys are having fun. »
“I would not necessarily say that we control the Eastern Conference”
In addition to matches missed by executives, such as Bam Adebayo, Jimmy Butler or Kyle Lowry, and the Covid-19 which wreaked havoc last December, it should be remembered that Miami played 25 away matches out of the first 41. Rigorous and complete, the 2020 finalists have more than survived a complicated start to the season on paper.
“We are very proud to be able to win in different ways”, assure Duncan Robinson. “It doesn’t matter which players are absent, which players are present. This season is a bit crazy for everyone. We have depth and that’s an advantage. We are proud of this first place, that’s for sure, despite this chaos. »
As the Heat’s room for improvement remains significant and the competition is strong and also still has things to demonstrate, Erik Spoelstra does not want to get carried away.
“It’s always nice to win matches and test yourself against the best,” concludes the coach, double NBA champion. “We are aware of the classification, without having our nose on it either. Above all, we want to play fair, to continue to progress as the season progresses. I wouldn’t necessarily say we control the Eastern Conference. It’s very, very competitive. »