Winners and Losers of Miami Heat's Week 3 of the NBA Preseason

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Winners and Losers of Miami Heat's Week 3 of the NBA Preseason

I'd say wait until the regular season for the Miami Heat to establish what type of team the really are.

The 5-2 record indicates a healthy start and another step in the right direction towards an NBA title, but it won't be until midseason rolls around where we'll begin to get a firm grasp on just how devastating and lethal this particular Heat team can be. 

Through seven games and two weeks of the NBA preseason, the Heat have given the indication that they could be a team like no other in the franchise's rich history of deep postseason runs and Hall-of-Fame caliber players on its roster. The roster and the potential implies that of a Heat team that could easily be on pace for a third consecutive championship if key players are healthy.

That means Dwyane Wade, who has played excellent basketball in his four appearances. Wade's health will be imperative in a fourth consecutive legitimate run at a title with a number of teams in the East improving and looking to take the Heat's crown. Miami has gotten by the skin of their teeth the past two years, going to Game 7 in the 2012 Conference Finals, the 2013 Conference Finals and the NBA Finals.

The road will only be more difficult. The preseason can be used not only as a way to weed out who will fill in the final roster spots, but will allow the coaches to see the final players added to the roster and if they're capable of breaking into the rotation.

Although it's unlikely now one of the newcomers can break the current rotation of Shane Battier, Ray Allen, Norris Cole and Chris Andersen, there is always the possibility a shooter or Greg Oden, if healthy, can earn consistent minutes. 

Nearly every aspect of the Heat has shown out so far. Coach Erik Spoelstra has experimented to the point of borderline embarrassing futility, but Miami has been relatively competitive in most instances.

Perhaps the most important of this preseason is the hot start Miami has gotten off to defensively. That wasn't seen last year when Miami was attempting to integrate Ray Allen into the system. The team as a whole appeared to be a step slow, but that doesn't appear to be the case this year. 

Miami is a game away from putting an end to their lengthy preseason schedule, finishing up with a home game against the Brooklyn Nets for the second time. Before then, we take a look at who or what have come up as the biggest winners and losers of the Heat preseason. 

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