Winderman’s view: Duncan Robinson continues as revelation, leads Heat vs. Spurs
Observations and other notes of interest from Sunday night’s 118-113 victory over the San Antonio Spurs:
– Duncan Robinson.
– Value contract.
– For all that has been uneven for the Heat at the start of this season, the ultimate revelation has been Duncan Robinson.
– Because it hasn’t just been Robinson at the arc.
– It also has been Robinson inside the arc.
– As it was again Sunday.
– On this night, as much of a threat as Bam Adebayo.
– Yes, there still will be nights when the shot is off.
– As there are for most 3-point shooters.
– Which was the case Saturday in Atlanta for Robinson.
– But this is a far more complete Robinson than previously witnessed.
– Sunday, it even meant getting Victor Wembanyama sideways in the third period, on what turned into a driving reverse layup.
– When Tyler Herro went down with his ankle sprain, there was conjecture about the replacement.
– Erik Spoelstra’s choice was Robinson.
– It has proven prescient.
– Now it’s a matter of getting Jimmy Butler back to the top of his game.
– And Kyle Lowry to pick up where he left off before Sunday’s night off.
– All of the above said, it is difficult to envision sustained offensive success without sustained 3-point success.
– Which wasn’t there for the most part Sunday.
– Butler was back and back in the starting lineup alongside Adebayo, Haywood Highsmith, Josh Richardson and Robinson.
– Robinson started in place of Herro, who is out at least two weeks with his ankle sprain, with Richardson opening in place of Lowry, who was given the night off.
– “Yeah, this is the life in the NBA,” Spoelstra said. “So that’s why we’re grateful for our depth.”
– He added, “It’s great to have Jimmy back in the mix tonight.”
– Butler had missed Saturday’s victory in Atlanta for a personal reason.
– The Heat’s seven starting lineups are the most in the NBA.
– Butler’s third free-throw attempt was his 2,000th with the Heat.
– Inactive for the Heat were Lowry, Herro, Caleb Martin, who remains out due to knee pain, and two-way players R.J. Hampton and Jamal Cain.
– While Hampton is dealing with a knee issue, Cain was available for the Heat, but kept inactive in order to preserve the Heat’s limit of games they can have two-way players active.
– Cole Swider was the lone two-way player active for the Heat, who went with 12 on their active list, three below the maximum.
– Kevin Love and Jaime Jaquez Jr. entered together as the Heat’s first two reserves.
– That again had Love at backup center in place of Thomas Bryant.
– Love’s first 3-point attempt was the 4,250th of his career.
– Dru Smith then made it eight deep.
– Bryant eventually made it nine deep in the second period, when he, instead of Love, entered for Adebayo.
– But it was Love as the backup big man of choice in the second half.
– It was the 700th time Love has scored in double figures in his career.