Erik Spoelstra has changed it up a bit. We are not playing as small as we were playing a month ago. We have been starting UD instead of Battier for a while now and Anthony is actually getting minutes as opposed to the beginning of the season. Yes, we occasionally see the small lineup, but i don't think we are seeing it as much as we were before.
As for Wade, i trust that he can turn it up in the playoffs.
FWIW, I think of the top teams in the West, the Heat would gladly welcome playing OKC again.
OKC may be arguably the best team out of the West, but in terms of match ups OKC is one of the more favorable match ups.
I can see Memphis, the Spurs, and the Clippers all giving the Heat a harder time than OKC. OKC strengths just seem to be too much of a head on match up of strengths, whereas Memphis, the Spurs and Clippers play directly into their weak areas (rebounding, ball movement, size, outside shooting and depth).
As for the East, Chicago and Boston I think are the worst match ups for the Heat due to rebounding for Chicago and experience for Boston. The Knicks can beat the Heat, but they would need to shoot well from the 3 point line and they need their bigs to be healthy (hopefully Sheed will be back for the play offs).
I just don't see Brooklyn having the right team mix to beat a team like the Heat. Don't get me wrong, they're playing well, I just don't see them beating the Heat. You either have to out shoot the heat (3 point), out move the heat (passing), or out rebound the Heat (size), and I don't see Brooklyn doing enough to match up well.
The Heat are still the favorites, but I don't think the odds are nearly as much in their favor this year as it was last year. Too many tough teams out West, and the East has a few teams that could knock them out if they play well at the right time.
Oh man I just had a crazy thought. What if Spo is the East team head coach for the all star game? Get ready for stupid rotations and a lack of ability to get everyone play time. He might also just bench Wade and Bosh in the 4th quarter to save their legs. Spo you crazy diamond. Lebron will probably play 20 minutes total.
Im not even scared of the heat. You guys keep bringing up Ray Allen but he isn't the closer he used to be. We have Novak. We have Amare. We have melo we have shump J.r. we have young legs. Adding Amares 20 ppg to our already high scoring games plus Shumps 10-15. And as for the record we have. We haven't even had half of our team. STAT is going to be right back on top soon he looks like he is re-inventing his game to go around Melos and so far its working. When Felton gets back STAT is going to be a monster. Don't say we cant compete because our team truly is mobb deep.
Yes the Heat are deep. But honestly the only thing you have over us is LBJ. Shump can guard Wade easily if he can shut down Rose he can shut Wade down have you not seen how fast and good on defense he is? You have Battier which will be great against Melo, but as for Bosh... STAT and Chandler will do him in. He cant bang around with the big guys. I think Felton has the upperhand on Chalmers but that is really close there. It just depends on health really when it comes to us. Camby, Sheed, Thomas. All of these supposedly ticking time bombs arent even big factors. Even if Jason Kidd goes down some time this year we have Felton, Shump, brewer, J.r. to move back and forth between the 1 and the 2.
im not even scared of the heat. You guys keep bringing up ray allen but he isn't the closer he used to be. We have novak. We have amare. We have melo we have shump j.r. We have young legs. Adding amares 20 ppg to our already high scoring games plus shumps 10-15. And as for the record we have. We haven't even had half of our team. Stat is going to be right back on top soon he looks like he is re-inventing his game to go around melos and so far its working. When felton gets back stat is going to be a monster. Don't say we cant compete because our team truly is mobb deep.
Yes the heat are deep. But honestly the only thing you have over us is lbj. Shump can guard wade easily if he can shut down rose he can shut wade down have you not seen how fast and good on defense he is? You have battier which will be great against melo, but as for bosh... Stat and chandler will do him in. He cant bang around with the big guys. I think felton has the upperhand on chalmers but that is really close there. It just depends on health really when it comes to us. Camby, sheed, thomas. All of these supposedly ticking time bombs arent even big factors. Even if jason kidd goes down some time this year we have felton, shump, brewer, j.r. To move back and forth between the 1 and the 2.
I dont know if the Heat are creating a "perfect storm" whatever that even means. But I certainly dont think its a foregone conclusion that they repeat, and I dont think their the best team in the league. Best team in the east? Probably. But OKC/SAS/Memphis/LAC are all more than capable of defeating the Heat. I dont think the Heat have "created" anything, but there are other really good teams in the league and repeating is hard.
The reason I am saying this is because their team is so small. Wade has regressed athletically speaking and Bosh's decline in rebound rate is astounding. His last years in Toronto he was pulling down 9.5-11 rebounds a game. Now he's at 7.5. They don't have much depth and while Lewis/Allen have been good, I don't think it's been as scary as advertised.
Chicago will be very, very strong when Rose comes back. They're 22-15 after all and Deng, Noah and Boozer will be a strong supporting cast, now more than ever.
New York *WHEN FULLY HEALTHY* has all the pieces to dethrone the Heat. They are incredibly deep, with Shumpert and Stoudemire back now, Felton back in two games. They have so many weapons to beat you and when LeBron is off the court, the supporting guys on the Heat will have a hard time keeping up.
Brooklyn also has a very good team and Boston will always be there. That's just the East and Miami's likely going to have to play two of these teams on the way to the Finals.
If they get there, OKC clearly looks like the better team this year and has the size to beat them.
they play better without rose, he may not help them, just kill everyone else's rythym.
miami is still the favorite, but now that they are playing with this much smller lineup then last year, the defence isnt the same. the east isnt that deep, theres only 3 teams i think good enough to beat heat in 7... knicks,bulls, hawks (forget them if they trade smith)