The Miami Heat have been incredible in the bubble, but they're now on the ropes. After a 124-114 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 2 of the NBA Finals on Friday night, they're now down 2-0. And unfortunately for them, their injured stars aren't coming back to save them.
Bam Adebayo and Goran Dragic are both out for Game 3 on Sunday, the team announced. Dragic suffered a torn plantar fascia in Game 1, while Adebayo strained his shoulder. The Heat listed Adebayo's neck as the reason for his absence, though, so he is dealing with multiple issues at this point.
Those two have been a crucial part of the Heat's success so far in the playoffs, and without them, there's little hope for a turnaround. They'll keep fighting, but as Game 2 showed, the Lakers just have too much talent. To be honest, with LeBron James and Anthony Davis leading the way, that might have been the case even if everyone was healthy, but it certainly is now that Adebayo and Dragic are sidelined.
Adebayo was one of the most improved players in the league this season and only continued that maturation in the playoffs, where he had arguably been the Heat's best player at times. His game-saving block on Jayson Tatum in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals was one of the highlights of the postseason, and his versatility in the frontcourt was too much for all of Miami's previous opponents.
Dragic, meanwhile, took over the starting point guard duties in the bubble due to Kendrick Nunn's bout with COVID-19 and regained his All-NBA form. He put up 19.9 points, four rebounds and 4.4 assists per game prior to his injury, and was second only to Jimmy Butler in scoring for Miami during the postseason.
With those two on the floor, the Heat were outscoring teams by 5.7 points per 100 possessions in the playoffs. Without them, the Heat are getting obliterated, posting a minus-17.9 net rating when they sit. That really says it all. Without Adebayo and Dragic, Miami is in a world of trouble.