As the Miami Heat prepares for Game 6 of the NBA Finals on Sunday night, they’ll be quick to realize that without Tyler Herro’s tremendous postseason, the Heat simply wouldn’t be at this point.
Jimmy Butler has led the way, but without his supporting cast, Miami wouldn’t be competing for a Larry O’Brien Trophy. Youngsters like Herro, who is just 20-years of age, have stepped up in big moments throughout the playoffs while breaking records along the way.
In the Heat’s Game 5 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night, the former Kentucky star dropped 12 points, becoming the first rookie ever to post 10+ points in 20 consecutive playoff appearances. He also hit two massive free throws in the dying seconds to solidify the victory for Miami.
Throughout the NBA Finals, Herro is averaging 16.2 points and 4.4 boards against a very experienced Lakers team, while also shooting 39 percent from downtown. He’s also averaging 35 minutes per contest during the Finals, which is the most on the Heat besides Butler. For a rookie to be this reliable in his first season is remarkable in itself.
Erik Spoelstra has complete belief in the youngster, putting him on the court at the most important times. He’s also proven to be a lot more than just a shooter, facilitating the ball well while getting to the hoop and finishing amongst bigs. In the postseason as a whole, he’s playing 33.8 minutes per night, which is behind only Jimmy Buckets and Bam Adebayo.
Building block for Miami
Jimmy Butler has said it himself, Herro plays with ridiculous confidence and swagger for a rookie. Even after a disappointing Game 1 where he had just 14 points and shot just 2 for 8 from three-point range, he responded in the next two games with impressive performances while hitting numerous key shots down the stretch.
It’s extremely rare you see a rookie perform like this on the big stage. But, Herro has made it look easy. In Miami’s Game 3 win, he did miss a couple of important shots, but instead of folding and continuing to struggle, he converted an important layup late in the fourth quarter then proceeded to snarl at the Heat’s family section:
Okay, I guess the likes of Ja Morant or Zion Williamson would do something like this during the regular season. But strut your stuff like this in the NBA Finals? Unheard of. However, Herro has every right to do so. He’s been absolutely fantastic for Miami in all aspects, solidifying himself as a franchise piece in South Beach, all before his 21st birthday.
Blessed with tremendous quickness and athleticism, the sky is the limit Tyler Herro. He’s already built himself a very decorated NBA resume just one year into his career and surely, the best is yet to come as he develops more physically and mentally.