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Horrible in the Half Court

January 28th, 2011 8 comments

The Heat’s half court struggles are confounding to all.

The Miami Heat is averaging 101.3 points per game thus far this season, while shooting 47.0% from the field.

That’s the best ever scoring output in the Pat Riley era and the second best efficiency mark in the NBA. Mighty impressive stuff for a team still very much a work-in-progress.

Yet hidden behind these statistics is a highly disturbing reality. The team simply cannot score in the half court. And Erik Spoelstra’s offensive system is to blame.

The expectation heading into the season was that the Heat would torment teams in transition, that Dwyane Wade and LeBron James would captivate us regularly with electrifying fastbreak dunks.

And, for the most part, they have. The Heat is shooting 61.3% en route to an average of 1.22 points on each transition possession, best in the league.

But the team only gets about 14 transition opportunities per game. While that’s actually quite a high total, it still leaves around 85 half court sets to deal with.

The problem, quite simply, is a fundamental lack of team basketball. Read more…

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