While former Miami Heat member Dwyane Wade is enjoying life with his new team, the Chicago Bulls, the Heat are having a difficult time adjusting to life without him.
Feeling the Burn
With Chris Bosh also not playing due to blood clots, the Heat knew there was a chance the season could be a rough one. They are currently 5-12, tied for the second worst record in the Eastern Conference, and have lost four of their last five games including a 112-104 loss to the Boston Celtics. Following that loss, head coach Erik Spoelstra criticized the team for its lack of organization. They’re one of the worst offensive teams in the league, ranking 28th in points scored per game (96.1), 27th in field goal percentage (42.5), and 27th in offensive rating (101.6).
Defensively, however, they are solid as they rank 5th in opponent points per game (98.2), 2nd in field goal percentage defense (43.1) and 6th in defensive rating (103.9). Hassan Whiteside, who leads the team in points per game, rebounds per game and blocks per game, has a defensive rating of 96 which is the lowest on the team.
First day out west? Going to work in Denver!
— Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) November 29, 2016
The Heat are next set to begin a road trip out west. Their first opponent will be the Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets are currently 7-10 and in 10th place in the Western Conference. Unlike the Heat, whose strength is on defense, the Nuggets are just average across the board. Denver ranks 18th in offensive rating (105.8) and 20th in defensive rating (107.7).
The Heat have had moderate success against the Nuggets, winning their last three regular season matchups against them. The one thing that could hurt the Heat is the fact that they’re 2-5 against Western Conference teams so far. The Nuggets, however, are just 2-4 against teams from the Eastern Conference. If the Heat can take advantage of Denver’s poor defense, they could win the game. However, if the Nuggets defend well against Miami’s below-average offense, the game could swing in their favor.
— Denver Nuggets (@nuggets) November 30, 2016
The game begins tonight at 9 in Denver.