The Miami Heat enter the 2015 NBA Draft with the desire to select a player capable of making a big impact in his rookie season.
After a tumultuous 2014-15 season which saw the Heat not only finish with a losing record, but finish with a non-playoff season for the first time in seven years, Miami is in a state of reloading.
The team does have stars in Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, but it’s clear the team lacks depth. The Heat were one of the bottom-five teams in the NBA in bench scoring last season. With the exception of Mario Chalmers, Miami didn’t have a scoring option it could depend on from the bench.
This is where the NBA Draft in June becomes pivotal. There is only a minimal chance Miami doesn’t get a top 10 pick in this year’s draft. It’s safe to assume the Heat are likely to draft at the No. 10 spot.
The draft this year is heavy on prospects who can make immediate impacts for their respective teams. The University of Arizona’s Stanley Johnson is one player in particular that fits what Miami is looking for heading into next season.
Johnson is a 6’7,” 242-pound small forward who played one season at Arizona. What stands out most about the soon-to-be 19-year-old is his ability to play defense and his aggressive nature on offense.
He has drawn comparisons to Metta World Peace and San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard. Johnson would be a great fit for the Heat because he would be ready to start from day one. If Luol Deng declines his player option and walks in free agency, Johnson could fill Deng’s role and grow as a player within the organization.
With Bosh, Dragic and Wade being premier offensive players, the pressure on Johnson to be a go-to-guy would be alleviated.
Let’s go into detail of some of Johnson’s strengths and weaknesses entering the draft:
(Continue on next page for Johnson’s strengths)