Tag:Mario Chalmers
Posted on: October 5, 2010 10:59 pm
Edited on: October 5, 2010 11:01 pm
 

Highlight Factory: Notes on Heat preseason debut

Heat win hugely important game that does not count in standings against mediocre squad. LeBron James is good at basketball.
Posted by Matt Moore and Royce Young


Some thoughts from your F&R staff after the Heat's 105-89 win over the Pistons to open the Miami Triad era. Dwyane Wade left the game in the first quarter with a strained hamstring and did not return.


Royce Young: One thing mildly interesting: With Carlos Arroyo on the court, he typically ran the offense but when Mario Chalmers was in the game, LeBron seemed to control things a bit more. I don't know if this was by design or coincidental, but it seems the Heat are set on letting LeBron operate much in the same way he did in Cleveland. Now this (preseason) game isn't the best indicator because Dwyane Wade only played a few minutes and really all it turned into was the Cavaliers with Chris Bosh, but still, the usage of the point guard was minimal.

Matt Moore: Interesting that you mention that, because I thought the offense flowed a lot better with Chalmers in the game. He wasn't dictating the ball by bringing it to the timeline or setting things on the perimeter as much, but Chalmers was a through-point for the offense, and his shot looked much cleaner than Arroyo's. It's not just that this team can operate with James or Wade at point, but they may actually need to.

RY: Chalmers handled his duties pretty well though. Ten points, seven assists and just one turnover in 19 minutes. And he's coming back off a light ankle sprain. He'll be seeing more like 25-30 minutes this season but if that type of box score becomes semi-consistent, this team will be pretty awesome.

MM: Much better than I was expecting. Arroyo on the other hand was dreadful, even with a better line (4 of 6) than Chalmers. He just seemed like such an athletic downgrade from Chalmers. Then again, it's preseason, which is what I like to call "Marioworld."

RY: If you're even a casual fan of the NBA, it was hard not to be a little star-struck watching Wade, LeBron and Bosh all on the court at the same time. It was kind of surreal. Everyone has their feelings about this Miami team but even if you're on the side that absolutely despises it with every fiber of your being, watching Dwyane Wade try and follow a missed LeBron layup was something else. I wonder how long it's going to take for this newness to wear off and we can all start watching them just as a basketball team. I kind of think it might not really happen this season.

MM: It definitely had that All-Star feel to it. I kept waiting for Usher to break out at halftime. Bosh I thought was the weirdest part. He's doing what Chris Webber called "the dirty work" by cleaning up misses (and man is he going to get a ton of points that way this season). This is a premier offensive player in the league, and he's essentially playing the Anderson Varejao role. Of course, Bosh's line was great (20 points, 6 boards), but he had significant trouble with both the double-team and setting up in the block. He looked much more comfortable face-up on the wing, which isn't surprising if you've done your homework, but betrays what he's supposed to be for the Heat, which is the man down low. I would have liked to see more pick and roll with LeBron from them tonight, as well as more high-post work from Bosh.

RY: The DNP's for the Heat: Eddie House, Kenny Hasbrouck, Juwan Howard, Jamaal Magloire, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Mickell Gladness and Da'Sean Butler. Probably not too much to read into there because the notable ones (House, Howard, Magloire and Ilgauskas) are old veterans and are probably being limited in preseason.

MM: I thought more interesting was that Patrick Beverly got as much time as he did (a good nine minutes) as well as Dexter Pittman. The Heat are obviously still giving the youngsters a look in preseason.

RY: For a player like Udonis Haslem who is near automatic on an open 12-foot baseline jumper, LeBron is going to be incredible for him. Haslem was very good finishing with 14-13 and hit 6-9 from the field. More than likely, Haslem will become the rock on the Miami bench and in some games may prove to be that difference maker on the second unit instead of Mike Miller or Eddie House, who most think needs to step up.

MM: Z lived off of drive and kicks from LeBron for years, but Haslem is more athletic and has a closer range (Z has to have space to allow time to set up his shot at his age). I think Haslem's got a ton of potential to be the difference maker for this team on both sides of the ball. The best thing about him is he's reliable. Well, except for last year against the Celtics. That'll be a storyline down the road.

RY: Joel Anthony is set as the Heat's starting 5 right now and here was his line: 20 minutes, zero points, one rebound, two blocks, 0-0 from the field and four fouls. When you're Joel Anthony on the roster built like this, you better get used to lines like that.

MM: I almost feel like Dexter Pittman's 8 points, 4 fouls, 2 rebound performance was better. The effort was there from Pittman which is what the team needs. Anthony's not going to fill up the point totals, but he better get to rebounding and fast. This team absolutely must dominate the glass if they want to get where they're going, because they're not flush with elite size.

RY:  Granted, just one preseason game so it's way too early to start crowning this team, but that didn't stop me from thinking about 25 times, "Dang, this team is good." Wade only played three minutes so that's not a big taste of what it will be like, but with LeBron cooking there's just no stopping them. I think while we all questioned how Wade and LeBron would co-exist this summer we kind of forgot what an unselfish and great passer LeBron is. Yes, LeBron needs the ball in his hands just like Wade, but at the same time, LeBron is such a creator that you can picture them working fabulously together.

MM: How about that jab-step dribble and jump-whip pass to Bosh for the dunk in the first quarter? That's the kind of stuff you're going to see a lot. I think a lot of people put too much emphasis on one game of LeBron's career (Game 5) and forgot that this really is the best player in the NBA. He's still able to get to the rim whenever he wants. Having Bosh is good for him because he can finally trust the guy to get it done. The Wade-James experiment is still in testing phase with Wade's injury, but it's a matter of how it will work, not if. This is a preseason game, so there's going to be heavy limitations from what we can take away from it. But if you're a hoophead, you watched this team and it struck you. We have a new powerhouse in the NBA and teams better get ready to contend with them.

I will say this in closing. The chemistry on court seemed good, but there was a concern. Bosh seemed a bit awkward and out of place early on when he wasn't just given the ball in ISO to work. That's going to come in time, but right now, it's something they need to work on. And if you noticed, James took a hard hit on his right elbow in the first, grimaced, cursed, then missed two free throws (finished 0-3 from the line). I'm not convinced the elbow is better. I am convinced the Heat are going to be not only good, but interesting to watch develop this year. As overhyped as they may be.


Posted on: September 27, 2010 1:47 pm
This entry has been removed by the administrator.

Post Deleted by Administrator

This message has been removed by the administrator.

Posted on: September 20, 2010 12:26 pm
Edited on: September 20, 2010 1:42 pm
 

The Heat will stretch the X's and O's

Posted by Matt Moore

We knew the Heat were going to be different. That's to be expected when you import two superstars onto the same team to join another. But we're now learning that it's probably going to push even further than we expected.

Ira Winderman of the Miami Sun-Sentinel spoke with Pat Riley a few days ago and the Heat head honcho "strongly hinted" that LeBron James or Dwyane Wade would do considerable work at point guard . Erik Spoelstra then spoke with the Miami Herald and said that James and Wade would "handle the ball" a lot. Wade has been adamant that him running point wouldn't be a big differential from what he's done at the past, but there's always been a "true" point guard on the floor bringing the ball up-court.

How does a Heat team ran at point by James or Wade look like? Well, it's different, that's for sure. A lineup that may see considerable time for the Heat features Mike Miller at shooting guard. You can expect Miller to camp on the perimeter and wait for his man to commit to a double-team or subsequent recovery help. The center's irrelevant here. Joel Anthony, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, doesn't matter. They're rebounding  and setting off-screens. That's it. Here's the kink in this system. If we suppose Bosh is in the post (where, honestly, he's not at his strongest, versus face-up), and James is running point, is Wade in the high post? Or is he on the perimeter as well? His perimeter shooting isn't good enough for that to be a viable strategy. The backdoor cut is obviously a high-potential opportunity. But then you're risking injury as Wade's in an elevated, high impact position, focused on catching the lob while the guys underneath try and kill him.

This is the problem with Wade at point-forward. With a talented true-center, he could run the two-man game. But is Bosh able to work that way out of the post? Bosh in the high pinch post with James at point playing the two man game may be the best option, with Wade floating off back-door screens, then driving inside for a kick and drive.

Lots of options. Wade at point may be the better one.

James in the high post may be the right merger of his skills. Gives his top-level passing the ability to go low to Bosh, out to Miller, or off the cut to Wade. Wade working with Bosh feels like it would make more sense, on plays that allow James to take a possession "off." The biggest issue will be creating space without allowing teams to cheat inside and just smack them around in playoff-style basketball.

Oh, and there's Mario Chalmers...

Moving on.

The Heat are going to have a lot to figure out when they head to camp in a few weeks.
Posted on: August 27, 2010 11:58 am
Edited on: August 27, 2010 12:03 pm
 

Pop Quiz: Who will be the Heat's Robert Horry?

Posted by Royce Young

Fall is here, hear the yell, back to school, ring the bell ... The NBA season is right around the corner, and NBA training camp starts in just a few short weeks. To get you ready for the NBA season, we've put together 25 pop quizzes. Pencils ready? We continue our Pop Quizzes with this question...

What player on the Heat will be much more important than we expect?

People remember Michael Jordan first. Then Scottie Pippen . After that, the rest of the six championship Bulls teams featured a number of different players, pretty much remembered by being the other guys.

But Chicago wouldn't have won the 1993 title without John Paxson . Wouldn't have won the 1997 title without Steve Kerr. Wouldn't have won 72 games without Toni Kukoc and Ron Harper. It's easiest to look at the stars on a roster and forget about the role players that sometimes mean as much or in certain circumstances, more than the featured studs.

So with the triad of stars in Miami with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, most are forgetting there are 12 other players on the roster. I'm not sure many realize that the Heat intend on starting the traditional five players instead of three. And some of the extrras aren't bad players either. Between the rest of the Heat roster there are four combined All-Star appearances and two championships. Pat Riley did a masterful job assembling a power team based around three players, but he also did a pretty remarkable job of putting quality players around them.

And as the 2010-11 season gets going, we're going to start to get a sense about which of those guys will be the one that steps up in big situations. For the most part, one of the big three will handle things. But there will be nights Bosh is in foul trouble, LeBron is off and Dwyane Wade is sick. Or a night where the Heat run into another premier team and LeBron , Wade and Bosh aren't enough to carry the team. You'll certainly see that situation in the postseason. So who could be that hidden MVP for the Heat? Who could be the captain of the Robert Horry All-Stars, the role player that does his job and while it may not seem like a lot, means darn near as much as the primetime players?

The obvious candidates are probably Mike Miller and Udonis Haslem . Miller was signed to be a sharpshooter from outside and relieve pressure off of Wade and LeBron . With him hovering around the perimeter, lanes should stay open for Wade and LeBron to drive, and if the defense collapses, he'll be ready for an open 3.

Haslem is the classic role-playing big man. He rebounds, plays physical defense and has a feathery jumpshot that can be deadly. He understands his strengths and weaknesses and with Bosh with him inside, Haslem will be there just to spell Bosh and provide some interior assistance.

Eddie House is another player that will likely play a key role in a few victories. He was instant offense off the bench for Boston and his contributions were a large part in the Celtics winning the 2008 NBA title. When he comes in the game, he's ready to shoot from the hip. That might be a problem at times seeing as there are a lot of guys that need shots in Miami, but House understood his job in Boston playing with Kevin Garnett , Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, so I'm sure he'll get it with the Heat.

Those three are all prime candidates to play that big spot. But we expect those three to all play significant roles. The question is, who do we not expect to play a big role that will? My guess is third-year point guard Mario Chalmers.

The thing is, Chalmers is a starter. But he couldn't be more of a role playing starter. His job is to defend, get his team into an offensive set and then get out of the way. But there will be times opponents bracket the Heat's stars leaving Chalmers with the ball in his hands. He's going to have to make some shots. He's going to have to create some scoring opportunities. Wade and LeBron can't do this all on their own. They need their starting point guard to help.

Chalmers has already hit one big shot in his life. He's proven he can handle pressure. And he better. He'll have a ton of it on him in Miami and if he doesn't play well early on, fans and media will be calling for his head. In one respect, he'll have a ton of focus on him. In another, everyone has forgot that he's even on the team, much less a starter. But he's going to have a chance to prove his worth. And I'm guessing he will.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com