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Are the Heat demanding enough of themselves? – Boston Herald



Q: Jimmy Butler was fantastic, lights out against Boston. But there was no carryover in Memphis. After missing two weeks, it is too much to ask for two good games? – Steve.

A: Such seems to be the way of the 2022-23 Miami Heat, that good is good enough. It’s as if the effort/desire is not there to kick it to a higher gear. Monday night’s loss reminds me of the Heat’s overtime loss in Washington when they were severely shorthanded. The difference is that against the shorthanded Heat, the Wizards still found a way to come out on top. Against the shorthanded Grizzlies, the Heat never demanded that extra gear of themselves.

Q: Duncan Robinson is the fourth highest paid player on the team and has a guaranteed contract into 2026. Since so much has been invested in him, shouldn’t Erik Spoelstra do more to integrate him into the rotation? I do not see any team that will trade for his contract unless he regularly shows he is still an asset on the court. – Nathan, Miami.

A: Yet to eclipse .500, the Heat are well beyond showcasing at this point. One one hand, Duncan Robinson has been listed on the injury report with the sprained left ankle that had him out for four games before these past two “Did Not Play – Coach’s Decision” designations. So that could be an element at play. On the other hand, Erik Spoelstra has made it clear that he views Haywood Highsmith as a rotation player. Still, Monday night’s loss in Memphis begged for an offensive spark after the Heat lost their way after the first quarter. Because the bench was terrible against Memphis. So if not Robinson then, then when? And the reality is if the Heat do plan on eventually fully exploring the possibilities of Victor Oladipo, then the question might not be whether Duncan should be ninth man, but whether he should be 10th man.

Q: Is Orlando Robinson on the Heat G League team? – Eric.

A: Yes he is, closing Sunday’s victory for the Sioux Falls Skyforce with 27 points and 19 rebounds. The difference is that while Nikola Jovic, Dru Smith and Jamal Cain also played in that game for the Skyforce, all three are under contract to the Heat. Robinson, by contrast, can be signed by any NBA team. The Heat do not have control of Robinson’s NBA rights.

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