Two seasons ago, the Miami Heat blazed a scorching hot path to the NBA Finals, shocking the entire basketball world in the process.
The Heat would end up losing against L.A. in the final round of competition, but their run through the 2020 playoffs was the franchise's best moment since the LeBron James era.
A huge part of their success was the play of Tyler Herro, whose shooting ability helped propel the offense to new heights.
Unfortunately, Herro didn't quite live up to expectations in the following season, scoring just 15 points per game on 36% shooting from downtown. His worst struggles came in the postseason, though, when Miami was swept in an embarrassing first-round defeat.
With the 2021-22 campaign approaching, Herro responded to all the doubts and criticism regarding his performance and explained why he's ready to step up both on and off the court.
“Last year, it was all mental,” Herro said. “I didn’t enjoy coming into work every day.
For me, one of the biggest things was hearing people say that I partied too much, that I’m not in the gym, that I don’t love the gym,” added the Heat star. “If you knew me, you’d know I try to be the hardest-working dude out here. So, I think you’ll see that this year.
I just feel good,” he said. “I feel like I have a reason now. Not that I didn’t before. But now I have another reason to be motivated every single day when I walk into the arena. I have to be the best I can every single day because I have a daughter now. And I’m in a very good spot right now.”
It remains to be seen what kind of season Herro will have. At just 21-years-old, he can't be relied upon to give a consistent performance on a game-to-game basis.
If the Heat hope to return to the Finals, however, it is true that they'll need the best from Herro. So far, they're trusting that he can be the guy they need.
For their sake, let's hope that trust is not misplaced.