It’s Heatin Up in Miami…

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Adam Abougendia, STAFF WRITER

After the long awaited return of NBA hoops, things were bound to shake up in Orlando, Florida. As the regular season wrapped up, the hometown Miami Heat were placed as a number five ranked seed in the Eastern Conference. This meant Miami, led by five-time all star Jimmy “Buckets” Butler, would be going toe to toe against one of the most ferocious, yet injury filled Indiana Pacers who were ranked fourth in the conference. Little did The Heat know, this would be the start to something really special in Orlando….

 

  Miami natives have not seen the Heat in playoff action since the 2017-2018 season where the Heat were bounced out by the Philadelphia 76er’s. Sophomore, Manuel Villar who is a sixer’s fan expressed, “As much as I was happy that we won that series, Miami had tons of young talent at the time such as rookies, Bam Adebayo. Who as you know, is now an all-star caliber player. Also with veteran play coming from Goran Dragic and the career of Dwayne Wade was coming to an end, I knew that in a few years, The Heat would be a real force to be reckoned with.” In fact Manuel had a valid point and as he mentioned, three years later here the Heat are with a chance to secure their spot in the NBA Finals. But they had to put together a show of performances against some very real opponents. 

 

  They first took care of the previously mentioned Pacers in a sweep of 4-0. Jimmy Butler and veteran Goran Dragic performed great throughout the whole quarterfinal series. Winning that series, however, meant that the boys from South Beach had to go up against the dreaded number one seed and the team with the best record in the whole league, The Milwaukee Bucks. The bucks are led by the reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. Yet with the solid Heat core, the fans from Miami were confident going into the series and throughout the whole playoffs. 

 

  As to everyone’s surprise, The Miami Heat beat the favorites to win the whole championship in five games or a “gentleman’s sweep.” Heat fan and junior Carlos Betancur stated, “Everyone is playing amazing. We had a good defensive core with Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Jae Crowder, and Andre Iguodala. It’s truly inspiring and indescribable what the ‘dogs’ are doing in Orlando.” The next test is the very deep Boston Celtics. 

 

  For The Heat nation, it’s as Carlos said—“very exciting and hype,” The Celtics will be an extremely difficult challenge for this gritty Miami team, but their confidence flows from their players, to their staff, and their fans rallying behind them. As of now, Miami are up 1-0 in the series after a nail biter win in overtime with star center, Bam Adebayo contributing with a game winning block to save the game. Things are very well and truly, “heating up” in the bubble.