Tonight’s matchup: Whiteside-Gobert matchup highlights Heat’s game at Jazz

Miami’s Goran Dragic drives past Utah’s Rudy Gobert in the Heat’s win at Utah last season.

MIAMI HEAT VS. UTAH JAZZ

When: Friday, 9 p.m.

Where: Vivant Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, Utah

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Sun/WAXY 790AM, WAQI 710AM (Spanish)

Records: Miami 5-6, Utah 5-6

PROJECTED STARTING LINEUPS

Heat

F: Justise Winslow

F: Josh Richardson

C: Hassan Whiteside

G: Dion Waiters

G: Goran Dragic

Jazz

F: Joe Ingles

F: Derrick Favors

C: Rudy Gobert

G: Rodney Hood

G: Ricky Rubio

Scouting report: The Jazz have lost three straight, giving up an average of 116.7 points during the streak. Utah has been solid defensively otherwise, allowing the fourth fewest points in the league, 100.5 per game. Utah’s problem is offensively where it is 28th in scoring at 99.1 points per game and 26th in field goal percentage at .434. … Keep an eye on the center matchup with Gobert (14.1 ppg, 10.4 rpg) against Whiteside (16.5 ppg, 12.0 rpg). Gobert was runner-up in defensive player of the year voting last season. … Rubio leads the Jazz in scoring, averaging 15.8 points as they look to replace Gordan Hayward’s 21.9 ppg. … The teams split the season series last year, with each winning on the road. Goran Dragic had 27 points in Miami’s win at Utah. James Johnson averaged 19.5 points in the two games while Whiteside pulled down 12.0 rebounds per game. … The teams are tied in turnovers with 16.5 per game, the fourth most in the league. … The Heat are 2-2 on this season-long, six-game road trip. … Tyler Johnson, who missed the Heat’s victory in Phoenix because of illness, is probable.

[Ray Allen says Heat made the 2013-14 season “tough” on team by not “adjusting” to having older players]

[Hassan Whiteside lives up to Heat ‘standard’ in win over Suns after benching vs. Warriors]

[Should Justise Winslow be the Heat’s long-term starting power forward?]

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Whale hunting? Miami Heat linked to Gordon Hayward sweepstakes as team ‘worrying’ Utah Jazz

Gordon Hayward #20 of the Utah Jazz walks off the court looking at scoreboard, as they lost 102-91 to the Golden State Warriors in Game Three of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Vivint Smart Home Arena on May 6, 2017 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images)

MIAMI — During his season-ending press conference, Pat Riley revealed that he regretted saying the Heat were “looking for a whale” last offseason.

“I regret ever making that statement because now that’s always out there,” Riley said in April.

“You don’t have to go… whale hunting. I think you can acquire — and I think you’ll be required sometimes to get key players via trade — in that aspect instead of going out laying out $38 million for a guy. Some of these guys’ max contracts are ridiculous. But that’s the nature of the new collective-bargaining agreement.” Continue reading “Whale hunting? Miami Heat linked to Gordon Hayward sweepstakes as team ‘worrying’ Utah Jazz”

Where would an all-time Heat roster rank compared to other NBA teams?

Shaquille O'Neal and Alonzo Mourning helped the Heat win the 2006 NBA title.
Shaquille O’Neal and Alonzo Mourning helped the Heat win the 2006 NBA title.

The Miami Heat have made a sizable impact on the NBA landscape since joining the association in 1988, but how would a roster of the Heat’s all-time best players stack up against other teams’ historic collections?

PointAfter, a data-driven sports-research website, created rosters of the 12 best players that have played for each NBA organization and ranked the teams based on the win shares that the players on the roster accumulated over their time with that franchise. The player were chosen based on “a combination of All-NBA team nods, All-Defensive teams earned, All-Star appearances, championship rings and overall contributions to the organization,” according to PointAfter.

The Miami Heat’s starting five features a quintet of familiar faces: Tim Hardaway at point guard, Dwyane Wade at shooting guard, LeBron James at small forward, Chris Bosh at power forward and Alonzo Mourning at center. It should come as no surprise that the “Big Three,” with their championship runs and award-winning seasons, are well represented among the Heat’s hypothetical starting five.

The Heat’s all-time roster boasts a deep bench consisting of Shaquille O’Neal, Glen Rice, P.J. Brown, Eddie Jones, Rony Seikaly, Ray Allen and Udonis Haslem. O’Neal likely lost out on a starting spot due to the brevity of his stay in Miami, while the face of the franchise Udonis Halsem’s longevity no doubt helped earn him a roster spot.

As a whole, the Heat’s all-time roster combined for a total of 549.3 win shares, placing them 21st out of 30 teams. Miami finished ahead of the Toronto Raptors, Minnesota Timberwolves, Los Angeles Clippers and in-state rival Orlando Magic, among others.

Not surprisingly, the Boston Celtics feature the greatest all-time roster, led by Hall of Famers Larry Bird and Bill Russell, PointAfter says. Rounding out the top five behind the Celtics are the Los Angeles Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers, Utah Jazz and San Antonio Spurs. Despite the efforts of Hall of Famer Michael Jordan, the Chicago Bulls ranked only seventh on the list.

For more, read PointAfter.

Five takeaways from the Miami Heat’s 102-91 loss to the Utah Jazz

MIAMI — The Heat’s struggles continue.

Miami fell to 2-6 this season in a one-sided 102-91 loss to Utah (7-4) on Saturday night in AmericanAirlines Arena. The Heat have now lost four consecutive games and are 1-4 at home to start the season. Continue reading “Five takeaways from the Miami Heat’s 102-91 loss to the Utah Jazz”

Joe Johnson set to make return to Miami as member of Utah Jazz

Utah Jazz forward Joe Johnson (6) drives on Dallas Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes, rear, during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Utah Jazz forward Joe Johnson (6) drives on Dallas Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes, rear, during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

MIAMI — Joe Johnson didn’t spend much time with the Heat, but he left an impression on at least one of Miami’s young players.

After signing with Miami for a prorated minimum contract in February last season, Johnson played in 38 games for the Heat between the regular season and playoffs. It was enough time for Josh Richardson to learn an important lesson from Johnson. Continue reading “Joe Johnson set to make return to Miami as member of Utah Jazz”

Miami Heat: Our reporters’ predictions for the 2016-17 NBA season

ANTHONY CHIANG

With a bunch of new faces and no Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh, this Heat’s roster is full of question marks. But Miami’s new brand of basketball should be fun to watch, as the Heat will play fast and shoot a lot of three-pointers. A core of Goran Dragic, Hassan Whiteside, Justise Winslow, Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson should keep Miami in the playoff race for most of the season. Record: 40-42

Playoff predictions:

(Click for a larger version)
(Click for a larger version)

TOM D’ANGELO

Although the Heat are rebuilding, they will be entertaining. Miami is athletic, is going to hoist a lot of threes, will play hard and still has Hassan Whiteside and Goran Dragic leading the way. But it doesn’t have Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh and all that youth means the Heat will be sitting at home when the playoffs start for just the third time in the last 14 seasons. Record: 38-44

Playoff predictions:

(Click for a larger version.)
(Click for a larger version.)

DAVE GEORGE

Too much depends on what the record looks like by the trading deadline in February to make much of an intelligent forecast. If Hassan Whiteside develops a more reliable offensive game and a thicker skin, Miami could be flirting with .500 by then. On the other hand, if Goran Dragic and the other guards don’t mesh into something comprehensible, Pat Riley could decide to blow the whole thing up by midseason. We’ll split the difference and say no disaster but no playoffs either. Record: 36-46