The Heat seem to know they need to find a way to get to the free-throw line more than just twice, as they did in their Game 1 road loss to the Nuggets in Game 1 of the Finals.
“Probably because we shot a lot of jump shots, myself probably leading that pack, instead of putting pressure on the rim,” star wing Jimmy Butler said, via Nick Friedell of ESPN. “Getting layups, getting to the free throw line. When you look at it during the game, they all look like the right shots.
“And I’m not saying that we can’t as a team make those, but got to get more layups, got to get more free throws. And whenever you miss and don’t get back, the game gets out of hand kind of quickly. We gave up too many layups, which we also can’t have happen. But that’s it as a whole. We’ve got to attack the rim a lot more, myself included.”
- Coach Erik Spoelstra offered some credit to the Nuggets. “Things have to be done with a lot more intention and a lot more pace, a lot more detail,” he told reporters. “We are an aggressive, attacking team, and so if we are not getting those kind of opportunities at the rim or at the free throw line, we have to find different ways to be able to do it.”
- Swingman Max Strus was 0-for-10 shooting in Game 1. Small forward Caleb Martin was just 1-of-7. It’s hard to win when two starters are 1-of-17 combined. “I love the looks, and I think we’ll get more looks,” Martin said. “I think this game was kind of a figure-it-out game; well, figure it out half. I think we started to figure it out the second half, but the looks that we got, the shots that we missed, it’s kind of laughable. We’re much better shooters than we shot tonight.”
- Butler predicted a better showing in Game 2. After all, Game 1 was never really close. “”You’ve got to attack and attack everybody, not just one individual,” Butler said. “I have to do a better job of creating the help, one, two guys, and getting to my shooter, otherwise finishing at the rim, making shots.”