5 Factors Fueling Miami Heat's Strong Start to Playoffs

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5 Factors Fueling Miami Heat's Strong Start to Playoffs
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
So far, the Miami Heat are soaring high above the Bucks.

When they speak to the media, Miami Heat players and coaches invariably show respect to their opponents, even when those opponents are quite obviously overmatched.

So no one on Miami said anything, after taking a 2-0 lead in the first-round series, that could be interpreted as a sign they aren't taking the rest of their assignment seriously. 

"We held court," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "We protected it for two games. We did what we're supposed to do. And that's it."

That's true, but they also held the Milwaukee Bucks to an average of 86.5 points over those first two contest, dominating Game 1 and then playing below par in Game 2—and still showing they can pull away offensively whenever they press the pedal. 

So far, the Heat are what we thought they were: a juggernaut led by the game's best player who is surrounded by two other stars and a variety of pieces that appear to fit perfectly. 

The competition will get tougher as the playoffs proceed, with the rugged (if battered) Chicago Bulls or balanced Brooklyn Nets waiting next.

But, in reality, either team would need the Heat to slip some simply to have a shot.

Instead, for a variety of reasons, Miami appears to still be surging.

(All quotes in this piece were collected through the course of the author's coverage of the Miami Heat for the Palm Beach Post. All statistics were accurate though Game 2 of the first-round series against the Milwaukee Bucks.)

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