Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra is reportedly upset that his team plays down to inferior opponents at times, per an unnamed Heat player's remarks to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald (via Jonathan Sherman of Heat Nation):
Spoelstra may get even madder that someone spilled the beans to a major media outlet, but he has bigger problems to tackle with 42 games left.
The 20-20 Heat are coming off a dominant 115-99 win over the Boston Celtics, and they led by as many as 26 points in that contest. However, Miami has some puzzling losses on its resume, including three defeats to the 12-29 Atlanta Hawks and another to the 17-25 Washington Wizards.
That inconsistency is a bit alarming, though the Heat can take solace in the fact that teams in the bottom half of the league won't be their potential playoff opponents.
If Miami won those four aforementioned games, though, we could be talking about the Heat as a surprise team for a top-four seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. However, they are closer to missing the postseason than earning home-court advantage in the first round.
They look like they have turned a corner, though. Spoelstra's team is 13-7 in its last 20 games following a 7-13 start. Miami can count wins against the 29-11 Milwaukee Bucks, 23-17 Houston Rockets and 24-17 Los Angeles Clippers during that stretch.
We'll soon see if the Heat can take better care of inferior opponents. Three of their next four games are against teams with losing records.