Miami Heat at Chicago 2020 All-Star Weekend
Since LeBron left Miami in the 2014 offseason, Miami hasn’t been well represented at all-star weekend. Since then, Dwyane Wade has been nominated to 3 all-star games, 1 as a special roster addition. Chris Bosh was a one-time selection before he was forced to retirement due to injury. Goran Dragic was also a one-time selection 2 years prior. The Heat, have not anyone represent them in the dunk contest/rising-stars game since Norris Cole was a rookie in 2012. The last time Miami had a dunk-contest representative was 1995, when Harold Miner won his 2nd title in 3 years, winning in also in 1993. And Wayne Ellington, since LeBron left was the only Heat member to represent them in the 3-point contest.
Half the Roster Could Be in Chicago
After years of sending one or even zero guys to all-star weekend, this year could be much different. Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Duncan Robinson, Derrick Jones Jr., Kendrick Nunn and Tyler Herro could all be in Chicago. That is a major increase from previous years.
Jimmy and Bam Playing on Sunday
The way things are shaping in Miami, they are poised for a deep playoff run. This is much thanks to superstar Jimmy Butler and rising phenom Bam Adebayo. These two could very well be running the pick-and-roll in February in Chicago at all-star weekend. Butler, this season has shown his value as a leader and playmaker. He leads the team with just over 20 points a game but also adds 6.5 rebound, 6.6 assists and just about 2 steals a game. Bam, on the other hand is having his coming out party averaging 15.7/10.6/4.6/1.5/1.3. This exiting duo could be seen in February but also deep in May/June. It is also very possible we can see Bam representing Miami and the big-men in the skills competition on Saturday.
Rook 1 and 2 on Friday
Both Kendrick Nunn and Tyler Herro have impressed as rookies. Both are tops in terms of rookies in total points and points per game. Nunn and Herro have both contributed to where the Heat currently stand as of Christmas. With Bam and Butler likely off to the all-star game these two rookie ballers should be nice compliments in the rising-stars challenge. Not only are they two of the Heat’s brightest young-stars, they are also putting the whole league on notice. Expect these two Heat studs to be competing for Team USA in Friday’s rising-stars challenge.
Saturday Night of all-star weekend has lost it’s excitement in years past. With that being said, two or three Heat players could be representing South Beach on Saturday. Derrick Jones Jr. one of the league’s most ferocious dunkers should very well be one of the 4 participants in Saturday’s dunk contest. And Duncan Robinson, should be one of the 8 three-point shootout contestants. Robinson is 12th in the NBA in three-pointers made per game as well as 7th in the NBA in three-point field goal percentage. Earlier this season he event tied the franchise record for 10 3s made in a game. Robinson and Jones Jr., two un-drafted players could showcase their skills to the rest of the NBA.
Should Be a Fun Weekend For Heat Fans
The 22-8 Miami Heat haven’t gotten enough recognition as one of NBA’s top teams. They haven’t been on national television as much and are not being talked about enough. Now, they are getting the recognition they deserve. ESPN is talking about them more on their shows, and they are also trying to fit them in on Wednesday and Friday nights more. All-star weekend could be nice for Pat Riley and company. He could see his two rookies light up Friday; see Bam, Jones Jr., and Robinson showcase their skills on Saturday; then see Bam and Butler take center-stage on Sunday with the league’s brightest stars. Miami may not have the star power like the Lakers or Clippers but they sure as do have players willing to fight.
Click here to read my last article on the Heat’s big win in Philly, and as always, follow me on twitter @Mikekormanik for Heat updates and live reactions and follow @oth_basketball for the best Heat previews, NBA reactions, Heat recaps and everything else basketball!