With that being the case, the Heat’s starting lineup likely won’t feature any unfamiliar faces against the Pistons, but there are still some unanswered questions about which five players will start in the opener.
Caleb Martin started 49 games in the 2022-23 regular season, but he’s currently experiencing knee discomfort and expects to play off the bench against the Pistons, seemingly opening the door for Kevin Love to start.
Caleb Martin said still experiencing knee pain. Says will be available Wednesday, but expects minutes limit.
— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) October 24, 2023
Caleb Martin said he likely will be uses off bench, which suggests Love would start. Martin said he still has knee discomfort but said he will play tomorrow
— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) October 24, 2023
While nothing is set in stone, the Heat could go with Kyle Lowry, Tyler Herro, Jimmy Butler, Love and Bam Adebayo as their starting five against the Pistons.
Love certainly got used to starting for the Heat during their run to the NBA Finals last season, as he started in 18 of his 20 playoff games. Now that he has had time to adjust to life with the team, he may be able to give the Heat a bit of a boost this season.
Miami is certainly hoping that Martin’s injury won’t linger, as the team could use a leap from him in the upcoming campaign. The 28-year-old turned some heads in the 2023 playoffs by averaging 12.7 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in very efficient fashion.
The Pistons are going to be without some key players in Wednesday’s matchup, perhaps opening the door for the Heat to take care of business without breaking a sweat. By record, Detroit was the worst team in the NBA last season at 17-65.
After facing the Pistons, the Heat will get a crack at one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference heading into the 2023-24 season in the Boston Celtics. The Heat and Celtics, of course, had an epic series in the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals and could end up in each other’s way once again this season.
Under normal circumstances, the Heat may end up rolling with a Lowry-Herro-Butler-Martin-Adebayo lineup this season, but it doesn’t look like that will be the case on Wednesday. With any luck, it won’t impact the outcome.