The 2019 first-round pick out of Kentucky was the team’s only bright spot during their embarrassing blow-out 144-97 loss to Milwaukee on December 29 by shooting a team-high 23 points. In the Heat’s bounce-back 119-108 win against the Bucks on December 30, he drilled another 21 points.
With Jimmy Butler sidelines with a right-ankle sprain, Herro started on Wednesday as the team’s point guard alongside Avery Bradley, Andre Iguodala, and Bam Adebayo. The 20-year-old was clutch with a career-high 15 rebounds, four assists, and an impressive three-point third-quarter buzzer beater.
“Tyler can be more like who he can be, in his strength, when he’s receiving passes and generating offense, in that way,” Heat’s head coach Erik Spoelstra said, “rather than always having to set us up as a point guard.”
“He was very assertive, but he also read the defense better,” Coach Spo continued. “I thought he made some really nice plays throughout the course of the game versus their good defense. Even some of the plays where we weren’t making shots, it was the right read.”
Adebayo is also confident in Herro and understands the growing pains of becoming a starter, as he did last season. “He’s in the transition I’m in,” Adebyoa said.”You go from a role player to a starter, so it’s a different feel. Usually when you come off the bench, a bench player is a spark. So he’s learning, he’s manifesting, he’s soaking in all the knowledge, so sky’s the limit for that kid.”
Herro Says He ‘Just Got his Rhythm Back’
Following the Bucks win on Wednesday, Herro couldn’t exactly pinpoint why or how he started playing so well. “Honestly, I don’t really feel the difference whether I’m on the ball or off the ball, because I think it is position-less,” Herro said. “I don’t know. I think I just got my rhythm back.”
Fueling the team’s performance on Wednesday following their crushing defeat the night before, Herro said the team went into the game “with a lot more energy and lot more focus knowing the Bucks had something against us,” referencing when Miami basically swept them 4-1 in the playoffs last season.
“They’re looking forward to playing us, and I think that’s going to for every team that’s going to step in this building,” Herro said.
Goran Dragic Said of Herro, ‘You Want Him to Be Him’
Heat veteran Goran Dragic, who scored a team-high 26 points against the Bucks on December 30, believes that Herro is destined for greatness.
“He’s going to have to develop that in the next stage, trying to organize everybody and maybe get those reads on the pick-and-roll,” said Dragic. “But you want him to be him. He’s a great scorer.”
With the constant shifting starting lineup, Dragic knows it can be difficult to find that groove. Following the team’s monster loss to the Bucks, “We had to fight and get that win back. I feel like the beginning of the season, we’ve played the four games, we’ve had four different starting lineups and we need to start getting better … It’s going to come when we get Jimmy back and we still have to get to know each other.”