Miami Heat fans are starting to worry. They have every reason to, as their team has yet to string together four solid quarters of basketball all season.
Their lack of height is proving to be costly. Chris Bosh stands tall at 6'11", but he isn't built like an NBA center. The only other two guys taller than 6'9", Josh Harrellson and Dexter Pittman, rarely see playing time.
Miami does not possess that big presence inside to scare other teams away. The Heat are obviously the team to beat in the league, but they intimidate no one right now.
More and more teams are starting to figure out ways to beat them. The opposition is realizing they can shoot more from the outside against Miami and put big guys down low to box out and dominate board play.
On Monday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Heat were out rebounded 17-3 in the first quarter alone. Kevin Love had nine rebounds himself in that quarter. The sub-par quarter was one of many for the Heat this year.
They often play down to the level of the opposition. I say down not to degrade other teams, but simply because the Heat have two of the top players in the NBA. It is unacceptable for guys like LeBron James and Dwyane Wade to look like they're not trying.
That often seems to be the case. I have noted many instances where the two stars are nonchalantly walking back on defense leading to easy buckets for their opponents.
I also find them making sloppy passes that result in turnovers.
The only thing they have working for them is that when it does come to crunch time and the game is close, they do start to amp up the heat a little bit.
In my eyes, that’s just unacceptable. You play to win the game. You play hard for four quarters. You need to execute on a consistent basis.
While their all-around athleticism and fancy ball movement usually makes up for it, ranking second-to-last in the league in rebounding will eventually catch up with them.
Everyone knows their game plan at this point: have LeBron or Wade drive to the lane and dish it out to guys on the wing if it's not open. Luckily for them, they still sit at 16-6, which is good for the second-best record in the Eastern Conference.
They shouldn't be settling for anything less than first. Having LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh all together on one team has obviously been great, but when is it time to start worrying?
Sure, they won the title last year. In order for them to become the dynasty they desire to become and win multiple championships, they are going to need some glass eaters. They simply don’t have any right now.
Only time will tell if their lack of height will prevent them from more success.