KEY POINTS

  • Heat is looking to make another good Finals run in the 2020-21 NBA season
  • Pat Riley feels the Heat could have forced an NBA Finals Game 7
  • Goran Dragic is expected to be re-signed but on a short-term deal

The Miami Heat is on the right track so it hardly comes as a surprise that team president Pat Riley plans to stay the course. The 2019-20 NBA Finals is over and done with, though the Heat top brass says there will always be an asterisk tied to that.

In an interview with the Miami Herald, Riley said things would have been different had the Heat had Bam Adebayo and Goran Dragic in the NBA Finals. Both players fell to injuries during Game 1 and missed key games for Miami.

"They beat us fair and squarely. But there will be always be that asterisk; if we had Bam and Goran 100% — Goran was our leading scorer [entering the Finals] — it might have gone to a seventh game," Riley said.

Regardless, the Heat gave the Lakers quite a challenge in the NBA Finals. Despite being undermanned, Jimmy Butler — who incidentally was not at 100% as well due to an ankle injury — led the way for the surprise team of the 2019-20 NBA season. Among those who stood out were Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson and Kendrick Nunn.

In preparation for the 2020-21 NBA season, Riley and head coach Erik Spoelstra will try to improve on what they have. There are calls for the Heat to lock Adebayo to a long-term deal, while the chances of Dragic returning remain up in the air.

Among those who batted for the Heat to seal the deal with Adebayo is former Heat big man Chris Bosh.

“If it’s me in the GM’s chair, I’m locking Bam up right away,” Bosh said on Complex’s "Load Management" podcast. “Will be no thoughts, nothing necessary. You can put that to the side.”

As for Dragic, he is fresh from a five-year deal which saw him earn $19 million last NBA season. He is currently an unrestricted free agent, although the consensus is that he will stay in South Beach. When asked to comment on his plans moving forward, here is what Dragic had to say via the Sun-Sentinel.

“I want to be happy,” Dragic said. “I’m at that stage of my career where it’s not only about me. It’s about my family, my kids, my wife. I do have to admit, I’m really happy.”

Pat Riley prior to the start of Game Four of the Eastern Conference Second Round
Pat Riley prior to the start of Game Four of the Eastern Conference Second Round Getty Images | Douglas P. DeFelice
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