Beal recorded his 21st straight game with 25 points or more on Friday, which was the longest streak in the NBA this season. However, that streak came to an end on Sunday, as the Heat limited him to just 23 points.
The all-time record was set by Wilt Chamberlain, who had 106 consecutive games with 25 or more points. Only three players in the past 10 years have had such streaks. Last season, James Harden had 40 games in a row and while in 2014, Kevin Durant had 41. Both players were in the MVP conversation in during their respective campaigns. That’s something to think about when we look back on Beal not earning an All-Star bid.
Coach Erik Spoelstra was asked whether it was Beal’s shot not falling or the Heat’s defense that slowed down the shooting guard.
“Probably it’s always a combination of everything,” Spoelstra told Heavy.com and other media members in attendance. “I think our disposition was where it needed to be. Then guys need to miss shots, but at least we didn’t have flat-footed, late communication on different things, guys were in a stance. You know, that’s due to a tremendous amount of respect that our locker room has for that player over there. We defended him, I thought, as well as we possibly could the game before this and he had 38. He can create something out of nothing and is as good as anyone in this league.”
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Beal believes the Heat did a good job of taking away his ability to drive to the hoop.
“They took away all my drives, everything to the paint. They wanted to force me to shoot jumpers all night,” Beal told Heavy.com and other media members in attendance. “They are a really good rebounding team and that will play into their favor. Really, they just loaded up. They were switching pick-and-rolls with a double, late switch. They did a good job just keeping me off balance. We still got to find other ways to get to the basket and contribute in other ways when our threes aren’t falling.”
Bam Adebayo Showcases his Respect for Beal
After the game, Heat center Bam Adebayo rocked a signed Bradley Beal jersey while conducting interviews. He said it was “out of respect” for the shooting guard
Wizards Happy With Their Centers
GM Tommy Sheppard participated in a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Sunday. The executive was asked about the resources the team might spend at the center position this summer.
“If you look at the way the game is played, it’s harder and harder to have significant money tied in to one player at the center position. We found it as a necessity to do center-by-committee. We’re pleased with the progress of Thomas Bryant, Moe Wagner, and Anzejs Pasecniks,” he wrote on Reddit.
The team has Ian Mahinmi’s contract coming off the books and it’s possible that he returns on a much cheaper deal. However, don’t expect the team to sign anyone at the five to major money.
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