Sitting at fourth place in the Eastern Conference, one would think that the Miami Heat have at least one all-star on their roster. After all, the New Orleans Pelicans have two all-star starters on their team in Anthony Davis and Demarcus Cousins, yet are only two games above .500.
However, based on most NBA analysts, it seems very unlikely that this year’s Heat team will have any all-stars, even with the great amount of success they have had as a team.
Is this because the team as a whole is underrated, or is there simply no all-star caliber player on the roster?
Currently, the only two players on the roster that could even be considered to be an all-star would be Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside.
Taking a look at Dragic, he is currently averaging 17.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 4.9 assists per game this season, on 43.7% shooting from the field. He has been the team’s most consistent offensive player by far, and has been the main reason why Miami has been so successful this season.
If team success played a bigger role in the all-star voters’ decision making, then Dragic would definitely be receiving an abundance of votes. Unfortunately, this is not the case, and although his numbers have been impressive, there are several other guards in the East, such as John Wall, Kemba Walker and Kyle Lowry, that have also put up great numbers. If Dragic was to make the team, one of these three players would have to get snubbed, and this seems improbable.
As for Whiteside, in his last eight games, he has been averaging 16 points, 11.5 rebounds and 3.5 blocks per game, and it looks like he is finally returning to full form after his knee injury. Prior to the season, most Heat fans assumed that Whiteside would be an all-star this season after his impressive season last year. This may have been the case if Whiteside had been healthy, but he has been forced to miss 18 games this season with his nagging knee injury, which has essentially removed him from all-star consideration.
Even though the Heat do not have an “all-star,” they have asserted themselves as one of the deepest teams in the NBA and all their success has been due to every man on the roster, not just a select few. It is widely believed that an NBA team needs at least one all-star to truly be competitive, yet the Heat have been proving this idea wrong all year long.
The Heat pride themselves on not being “top heavy,” and unlike most other teams, if a role player like Kelly Olynyk is playing very well during a game, coach Erik Spoelstra always elects to keep the bench unit in the game for the betterment of the team. Although it may be tough for players such as Whiteside and Dragic to lose minutes to the bench unit, they know that Spoelstra is simply doing what is best for the team. This year’s Heat team is extremely team-oriented, and even though there will most likely be no all-stars on the roster, coach Spoelstra’s system will continue to allow the Heat to be successful in the future.
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