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Q: You have been very defensive of Duncan Robinson and his value to spacing and motion in the offense. However, his play the first 19 games of the season has been quite dreadful. Not only is he missing shots, his defense, rebounding and turnovers are concerning. At what point does a change become necessary? At least Max Strus adds defense and rebounding, hustle and can get to the rim off screens. — Aaron.
A: But that isn’t happening. At the moment, Max Strus hasn’t even been in the rotation the past two games. But I will meet you halfway. The shooting struggles are overstated. Duncan Robinson still is among the NBA leaders in 3-pointers. But there are other elements that have been concerning, namely the rest of his game. The fouls and defense remain an issue, even some of the ballhandling. So it comes down to whether you want more complete, or a unique skill set that when clicking gives the lineup an X-factor.
Q: What say you now about Gabe Vincent? — Eric.
A: What I had said from the get-go, that he arrived as a shooter, developed into a quality NBA-level perimeter defender, and should not be forced into the mold of a traditional NBA playmaking point guard. So the change has been as much on the Heat’s end as Gabe Vincent’s. He now is getting minutes alongside Kyle Lowry, which is getting him back to his spot-up strengths on offense. And with Erik Spoelstra’s shift to more zone defense, it has allowed the Heat to play dual smallish guards together. In this role, Gabe Vincent has the look of a rotation player, which is what he has been now for the third time in a week. What seemed unlikely at one point now has become reality, with Vincent ahead of Max Strus in the rotation.
Q: Good to see Grant Long “The Human Vitamin” the “Take Charge Man” again, now one of the TV announcers for the Pistons. Do you think there is any chance the original Heat lineup will be in the rafters one day? They are a part of Heat history. At least maybe they could replace Michael Jordan’s jersey. — Jamie, Fort Lauderdale.
A: For whatever reason, so much of the Heat’s historical perspective basically is portrayed from within as starting with the 1995 ascension of Micky Arison and the arrival of Pat Riley. And, for good reason, considering that is when the Heat started spending and started winning. Still, if there wasn’t Glen Rice, there might not have been a trade for Alonzo Mourning. So a case could be made for a position of prominence somewhere at FTX Arena for Glen. Yes, fully understand that Championship Alley and its accompanying mural is reserved for champions, but it’s as if the first seven years have been erased for the team’s lore.