Sports

Five Takeaways From the Miami Heat's Preseason

Tyler Herro and Bam Adebayo during the preseason game against the Atlanta Hawks on October 4, 2021.
Tyler Herro and Bam Adebayo during the preseason game against the Atlanta Hawks on October 4, 2021. Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images
The Miami Heat's preseason schedule concludes when they host the Boston Celtics at 6:30 p.m. Friday at FTX Arena. After enduring two seasons in a 12-month span, the past summer of rest and recovery has led to an overwhelmingly positive return to the court for the Heat.

The roster changed over the offseason, energizing a seemingly fatigued team coming off a crushing four-game sweep at the hands of the Milwaukee Bucks in last season's playoffs.

So, what did we learn about the Miami Heat's new look this preseason? Here are the five biggest takeaways heading into their season opener against the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks a week from today. 

Kyle Lowry Looks Good in a Heat Jersey

If there's one thing we've learned this preseason, it's that the addition of Kyle Lowry will be as big an upgrade to the team as advertised. As much as Heat fans adored Goran Dragic, Lowry is a major improvement in the point-guard position.


Lowry does whatever is needed on a nightly basis, and it showed in the Heat's win against the Rockets last week. He had only scored two points by halftime, but ten assists. He's a winner and looks to be fitting in perfectly with the Heat.

Tyler Herro 3.0 Looks Legit

After a rookie season that ended with some incredible performances in the playoffs, Tyler Herro's sophomore season left Miami Heat fans, well, wanting more. Chalk it up to fatigue or off-the-court distractions, but Herro never delivered on the promise of taking his game to the next level last season.

This preseason, all signs point to that next level having been unlocked. Herro looks stronger, faster, and mentally prepared to lead the Heat's second unit. His play in the preseason has Heat fans believing the team was savvy not to give up on him after rumored trades.

Udonis Is Passing the Torch to Bam This Year

It's certainly beginning to feel like this will be Udonis Haslem's final season as an active player for the Miami Heat, now that he's finally found a worthy young leader with all the right characteristics to lead the Heat franchise for the next decade. Haslem hasn't been shy this preseason speaking about how Bam Adebayo is the future of the Miami Heat, and it seems as if the future is near.


Bam Adebayo has always felt like the future leader and cultivator of "Heat culture" moving forward, but Haslem has made it clear this preseason that he plans to pass the torch sooner rather than later.

Max Strus Is No Longer an End-of-the-Bench Player

The Strus is loose, folks. Max Strus is poised to play a bigger role for the Heat this season. If the preseason is any indication, he's ready for it.


After a solid Summer League showing that carried over to the Heat's preseason, it's clear Max Strus is the next shooter up when Duncan Robinson comes off the court. His confidence is sky-high, too. Now he just needs to demonstrate it in the regular season.

Stability Will Benefit the Miami Heat

The Brooklyn Nets are coping with the sidelining of Kyrie Irving due to his refusal to get vaccinated,adding a blow and distractions to their championship-level squad. The Philadelphia 76ers are dealing with the fallout of a messy situation following Ben Simmons' refusal to show up to the facility until this week after demanding a trade.


Meanwhile, the Heat is rested, ready, and fully vaccinated. That last will give them a tangible upper hand; the team will be able to collectively bypass many of the measures put in place for unvaccinated players.

They're already getting a head start on teams that are in disarray, which might just be all the advantage they need to wind up at the top of the Eastern Conference. 
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Ryan Yousefi is a freelance writer for Miami New Times, a lover of sports, and an expert consumer of craft beer and pho. Hanley Ramirez once stole a baseball from him and to this day still owes him $10.
Contact: Ryan Yousefi