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Pat Riley didn't make it a secret when he spoke of the Miami Heat and their intentions.
He let it be known that spacing the floor and opening up driving opportunities for his three stars would be essential for further success. Despite the team's apparent need for a presence down low, the Heat thrived so well on "small ball" throughout their postseason run that it may just transcend past this past season, which explains why they added two shooters instead of possibly one post presence.
Contrary to what you saw in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, the Heat aren't one of the league's top three-point shooting teams, as they finished 10th in three-point percentage and 20th in three-pointers made last year. Mario Chalmers supported the team from the perimeter for the majority of the season, while Shane Battier struggled with his shot, James Jones struggled to get minutes and Mike Miller struggled to stay healthy.
Those players are essential to the Heat's success on the offensive end. It is an absolute necessity for the Heat to have at least one perimeter threat for the offense to work as well it's projected to. Those perimeter shooters are the players who stretch the floor, which allows LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh more space to work within the perimeter and near the rim.
That's as complex as the Heat's offense gets. This team is extremely reliant on its three stars attracting attention and kicking out to the wide-open shooter. In turn, the perimeter shooters will need some respect from the defense, which will then allow the 'Big Three' to perform more efficiently without the traffic of the opposition packing the paint.
Ray Allen is going to become what the Heat hoped Mike Miller would be—an elite, consistent shooter who could knock down the open shots his superstar teammates gave him.
Miller never came to be due to injuries, so now the Heat will have no choice but to rely on the NBA's greatest three-point shooter. Allen has shot 40 percent for his career and most recently shot a career-high from beyond the arc at 46 percent, despite having injuries keep him out for 20 games.
Allen is a special type of player. His shot is pure and makes the net snap in a way you've never seen before. He has shot this well over a 16-year career because he relies heavily on a rhythm that he's established. No matter what type of defender is on him, Allen preaches to shoot the same way every single time.
With Ray on the court, defenders will have no choice but to guard him. He's too consistent and has too large a reputation as an elite shooter to allow to be left open. Because of the aura surrounding Allen, defenses will find it considerably more difficult to throw double-teams at any member of the 'Big Three.'
Allen knows how to get open, and he'll have no problem doing so in the Heat's offense, which is specifically designed to either allow shooters, like himself, to get open or for members of the 'Big Three' to have less resistance on their way to the rim.