Is the Omer Yurtseven era igniting, as Heat falls? – Denver Post
Observations and other interesting notes from Saturday night’s 113-99 loss to the Chicago Bulls:
–It’s almost as if Heat coach Erik Spoelstra is just playing for time in the absence of wideout center Cody Zeller, who is recovering from surgery for the broken nose he suffered last Saturday in Orlando.
– This time, after three ineffectual minutes on his first stint, second-year Omer Yurtseven failed to return in the first half, with Kevin Love instead moving to center when Adebayo took his second break of the game.
– Then, when starting center Bam Adebayo took his first break of the second half, it was Haywood Highsmith who entered for the first time, instead of Yurtseven.
– Even with Love also out of the game at the time.
– In other words, Spoelstra was more willing to go with a front line of Highsmith, Jimmy Butler and Caleb Martin than to tempt fate with Yurtseven.
– Only grabage time saw the return of Yurtseven.
– With Zeller, Spoelstra’s confidence was immediate upon arriving at last month’s buyout deadline.
– With Yurtseven, there was nothing like it in the second year big man week.
– Keep in mind that Yurtseven will be a free agent in the offseason.
– So if the Heat decides not to re-sign, there is still time to clear that roster spot for Orlando Robinson.
– Which would make the Robinson playoffs eligible.
– The Heat opened again with Adebayo, Kevin Love, Butler, Tyler Herro and Gabe Vincent.
– The Heat’s first seven shots were all 3-point attempts. The first two-point shot, by Herro, didn’t come until 6:40 into the opening period.
– Max Strus and Yurtseven then entered together as the Heat’s first two reserves.
– Followed by Martin.
– And then Victor Oladipo for nine from deep.
– The appearance was Oladipo’s 500th career regular season game.
– Oladipo’s first flight was the 800th of his career.
– Then, in the second half, Spoelstra opted for Highsmith over Yurtseven when Adebsyo came out.
–Spoelstra declined to go into pregame detail about the reasoning behind Lowry’s outfit Saturday instead of Sunday against the lower Pistons.
– “Because it was part of the plan,” Spoelstra said, without giving details of the plan. “That’s what we had planned for the week and we’re sticking to the plan. That’s when we considered his next day at work.
– In a hurry, he only added. “That was the plan and we’re just following the plan.
– Lowry went through a full firing cycle with assistant coach Anthony Carter before the game.
– The Heat have two more straight games, one each of the final two weeks of the regular season.
– “We’ll see where we go from here,” Spoelstra said of planning with Lowry. “But that’s the plan for this week. We’re formulating the plan for next week and we’ll see where we go from there.
– When asked if Lowry was the only Heat player to participate in such a management program, Spoesltra replied: “Right now, yes. That could change. We will see.”
– Oladipo was back in the mix after being sidelined in Wednesday night’s home win over the Grizzlies.
– “You have to stay ready,” Spoelstra said of Oladipo. “Listen, there are things that happen for players over a long season. It doesn’t always go the way you plan, the way you hope.
– So, de Spoelstra, as usual, just be ready. “We need input from everyone on the roster,” Spoelstra said. “It could be different guys at different times for different circumstances, injuries. It’s about producing in the moment and helping the team win.”
– Adebayo’s second offensive rebound was the 900th of his career.
– Strus’ second 3-pointer was the 400th of his career.
– Butler’s second defensive rebound gave him 2,800 for his career.
— Butler’s sixth rebound lifted him past Keith Askins for 16th on the Heat’s all-time list.
– Butler’s seventh free throw lifted him past Amar’e Stoudemire for 70th on the NBA’s all-time list.
– Herro’s fourth field goal was the 1,500th of his career.
– Spoelstra spoke pre-game about the Heat’s offensive rise.
– “For us offensively, we tried to build good habits throughout the season,” he said. “There were times when we moved in the right direction and then we took a step back. It’s probably our longest streak where we’ve been the most intentional in playing to our strengths and maintaining a consistent shooting profile.
–Bulls coach Billy Donovan gave pregame praise for Butler.
– “I think the thing that isn’t talked about enough about him is that he’s really, really smart,” Donovan said. “He, I think, plays the game in a way that he gets a lot more enjoyment from involving his teammates and getting guys going and almost using himself as a decoy to help out.”
– Donovan added: “And then obviously in the big moments he’s not afraid to take the big hit. But you can just say when you watch him play, the only thing that comes to his mind is, ‘What do I have to do, what do we have to do to win tonight?’ I have a lot of respect for guys like Jimmy Butler.