Does Max Strus necessarily get squeezed from Heat starting lineup? – The Denver Post


Q: Who is the better fit next to Kyle Lowry in the starting unit, Victor Oladipo or Tyler Herro? – Eddie, South Bend, Ind.

A: First it remains to be seen how the Heat handle power forward. But assuming a lineup of Bam Adebayo at center, Jimmy Butler at small forward and Kyle Lowry at point guard, you are talking about one additional starting wing. Considering that such a role has gone almost exclusively to a 3-point shooter during this three-year run that has included a trip to the NBA Finals and a trip to the East finals, it would appear that Max Strus would have a leg up. Even if Tyler Herro upgrades his 3-point shot, his slashing style of scoring does not necessarily make him a floor spacer. For Tyler or Victor to crack the starting lineup, it would have to mean consistent 3-point shooting from the starting power forward, and perhaps from Adebayo.

Q: P.J. Tucker barely limped home down the stretch, while Victor Oladipo and Caleb Martin showed more upside potential. – Greg, Jacksonville.

A: I agree that the loss of P.J. Tucker has been overstated. Yes, his veteran presence made a significant difference in the run to within one win of the NBA Finals, but it’s not as if his skill set is irreplaceable. Erik Spoelstra designed a system that played to P.J.’s strengths. Now he’ll have to design a different system. That’s what coaches do.

Q: Is the Heat’s (Pat Riley’s) premise of defense first built on a flawed system? Defense is important, but at the highest levels of competition in the NBA (playing against the best players/ teams in the world), you need players who can create offense. – Stuart.

A: Thus the interest in Kevin Durant and Donovan Mitchell. But Jimmy Butler, Tyler Herro and Victor Oladipo all can be shot creators, which gives the Heat a reasonable variety of choices. We have yet to see the Heat when all three are at the tops of their games collectively. This season provides such an opportunity.



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