The Dragon Struggles

The Dragon Struggles
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Early in the 2015-16 NBA season, point guard Goran Dragic has struggled to find any sort of rhythm with the new and improved Miami Heat. According to Palm Beach Posts’ Jason Lieser, Dragic has averaged over 17 points a game while shooting 48.4% from the field over the past three seasons. After nine regular season games, Dragic is averaging just under 11 points per game, but people need to remember that this is the first season he is playing with some of his teammates. There are several new faces in Miami this season and it will take some time for Dragic to adjust to the new offense that head coach Erik Spoelstra has installed.

The ball movement has been fantastic to start the season for the Miami Heat and everyone on offense seems to be getting the touches they need. So why is Dragic struggling to find his role on the team? He is used to playing with a fast-paced offense with teams like the Houston Rockets and Phoenix Suns; teams that just want to run all the time and put up threes. This isn’t the case with Miami, and it seems like the middle of the paint is too clogged up for him. Dragic has been aimlessly dribbling around the paint to start out the season and he is trying to do too much. He needs to let the game come to him and be patient. Let guys like Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Hassan Whiteside create the offense for him and that’s how he’ll be successful. With Bosh and Whiteside playing near the basket on offense, there just isn’t much room for Dragic to do what he is accustomed to and he definitely needs to change his role in order for the Heat to be successful this season.

It’s not a matter of if he will find a nice rhythm with his new team, it’s when. Dragic is too good of a player to be playing this poorly all season long and it is only a matter of time until he fits right in with his team. In the starting lineup, the Heat shoot the occasional three-ball with someone like Luol Deng or Bosh, but someone else needs to step up and extend the court for them. Dragic is an outstanding shooter, especially when he is open, and he needs to let the guys around him create good open looks for him. Dragic is used to setting up his teammates for open looks, but now he needs to take a step back and play at a slightly slower pace. The Heat have come out strong to start the season, but when Dragic feels more comfortable with his role, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers will feel the heat of the Heat.