Spoelstra reminds Heat that 7-game series are long, tough

Miami Heat's Jae Crowder (99) and Jimmy Butler (22) celebrate their 104-115 win against the Milwaukee Bucks during an NBA basketball conference semifinal playoff game, Monday, Aug. 31, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) (Mark J. Terrill, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

ORLANDO – The Miami Heat are trying to stay humble following a resounding win in Game 1 of their series with the Milwaukee Bucks.

Jimmy Butler scored 40 points as the Heat won 115-104.

On Tuesday, Heat head Coach Erik Spoelstra said the team went over some of the aspects of their game that they want to do more consistently.

Spoelstra said, “You don’t want to try to reinvent the wheel right now. You just try to do what you do more consistently, better than what the other team is trying to do to their identity. You have a lot of maturity to understand that 7-game series are tough, they’re long. You just have to take it one step of the way.”

Spoelstra reminded reporters that the Bucks lost Game 1 of their series against Orlando and then went on to dominate the rest of the series.

Today marks 25 years since the Heat traded the Knicks for Pat Riley.

Spoelstra said at the time he was, “Super nervous. I thought I would probably be out. I would’ve been out. He couldn’t bring anyone from New York... He definitely was going to be his video guy. I thought there was strong potential that I was going to be out.”

As for working with Pat Riley, Spoelstra said “fast forward now, I’m extremely grateful for all these years working for the godfather. He really has been an incredible blessing in my life. You’re going to get me emotional now. That just takes me down memory lane.”

As for his rotations, Spoelstra said “We really want everyone to be ready. And you don’t know what the game, how the game is going to present itself.”

Spoelstra said that Jae Crowder’s defense is one of the main reasons that he played so many minutes late in the game.

The Heat and Bucks play Game 2 Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m.

About the Author:

David Lang is executive producer of the Local 10 sports department.