The 2021-22 NBA season will attempt to be as close to a normal NBA season as possible after two years playing through a pandemic. The COVID situation in the United States has not improved as much as expected, but the league expects to get a full 82 games in while pushing for its players, coaches and staff to get vaccinated.
DKNation will be going through all 30 teams ahead of the season, looking at how the roster shapes up for the 2021-22 campaign. Here we take a look at the Miami Heat, who will look to fulfill championship aspirations after a big offseason acquisition.
Miami Heat 2021-22 Outlook
Key additions: Kyle Lowry, PJ Tucker
Lowry was the big deal Miami wanted to get done, but adding Tucker from the defending champions Bucks was a great way to weaken a rival. Both players will further boost Miami’s defensively profile. Lowry is the offensive mastermind who can unlock Miami’s shooters Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro. If Butler can maintain his All-Star form, this is a bonafide contender.
Key departures: Goran Dragic, Precious Achiuwa
Dragic’s departure will hurt. The point guard was a steady presence during Miami’s Finals run in the bubble and kept the offense ticking. Achiuwa has upside, but didn’t contribute much last season and needs time to develop.
Lowry doesn’t leave Toronto for Miami if he doesn’t believe this is a championship-caliber team. The Heat are expected to make a deep run in the playoffs and challenge the East’s best for a spot in the Finals. Anything less than a conference finals run will be considered underwhelming. A core of Butler, Lowry and Adebayo doesn’t quite stack up with the East’s top teams, but Miami’s overall rotation can make up for the difference.
Fantasy basketball player to watch: Victor Oladipo
The Heat brought Oladipo back, although his injury situation is concerning. When Miami traded for Oladipo, he was expected to be a missing piece offensively next to Butler. Unfortunately, the guard suffered another quadriceps injury and ended up missing most of the season. If Oladipo ends up making a full recovery and returns to his All-Star form, it’ll be a massive boost for Miami. For fantasy purposes, he represents a late-round lottery ticket for those who have already accumulated top talent.