The Miami Heat are recognized as one of the best organizations in the NBA because they have set a precedent about how their players will approach every game. The Heat employ a no-nonsense attitude in preparing for their competition and are focused on winning at all costs. Throughout NBA history, the Heat have achieved that by continuing to attract the best players in the game. Miami is, as expected, a very attractive destination for free agents and superstars looking to make a name for themselves.
Most recently, the Miami Heat made the NBA Finals on the back of their determination and willingness to outwork every team in the league. In 2020, nobody expected the Heat to make it to the Finals and stole 2 games from the champion Lakers despite missing two of their three best players. Clearly, Miami is an organization focused on winning at all costs whether they are underdogs or title favorites.
We have collected the 10 greatest scorers in Miami Heat history, in PPG, to uncover which players had the most impact when they were with the team. Longevity does not come into play here, because pure scoring power in the time each player played with the team is the only statistic that will be shown. By the end of this list, it will be clear that one of the most talented players in NBA history showed his true talents when he suited up for the Miami Heat.
10. Sherman Douglas - 16.0 PPG
(3 Seasons, 1990-1992)
Sherman Douglas was drafted in the 2nd round by the Miami Heat, taken No. 28th in the 1989 NBA Draft. A 6’0” point guard, Douglas impressed by making the All-Rookie Team averaging 14.3 PPG, 7.6 APG, and 1.8 SPG in 66 total starts. Douglas was rather miniature but had enough athleticism and speed to lead the offense quite well. After a strong rookie season, the Heat would hold onto their point guard for the following season.
Douglas averaged 18.5 PPG, 8.5 APG, and 1.7 SPG in 1991 in 73 starts. The point guard was easily the best point guard Miami had at the time, and appearing in 35.1 MPG helped boost his stats tremendously. The No. 28 pick would only last 5 games in his 3rd season before joining the Boston Celtics. Douglas is also mainly regarded as the pioneer behind the “floater” shot that many guards in the game use today.
9. Eddie Jones - 16.0 PPG
(6 Seasons, 2001-2005, 2007)
After making the All-Star Team with the Charlotte Hornets in 2000 by averaging 20.1 PPG, Jones was traded to the Miami Heat to start the 2001 season. Head coach Pat Riley signed off on this deal in order to boost his team’s title chances, because Jones was one of the best two-way guards in the game at the time. The Heat made the playoffs with Jones averaging 17.4 PPG and the player would continue to blossom as a scoring guard and defensive stopper with the franchise. In the next two seasons, Jones would average over 17 PPG for three more seasons.
By age 33, Jones was clearly starting to decline in his production but the team was bolstered with the arrival of 3-time NBA champion Shaquille O’Neal. With Jones mainly occupying the small forward position to accommodate superstar Dwyane Wade, he averaged 12.7 PPG in the season. Jones was traded before the 2006 season, which meant he missed the chance to win a championship with Miami as a role player.
8. Goran Dragic - 16.2 PPG
(7 Seasons, 2015-2021)
Miami Heat’s Goran Dragic was an incredible steady performer, despite only appearing in 26 games for the franchise after getting traded by Phoenix in the 2015 season. The Slovenian would become the Heat’s primary starting point guard, averaging 14.1 PPG in 72 games the following season. It did not take the clever offensive player to make an All-Star Team, averaging 17.3 PPG and 4.8 APG in 2018.
By far the greatest accomplishment of Dragic’s career was helping the Miami Heat make the Finals in 2020. Averaging 16.2 PPG in the 2020 regular season, the point guard took his scoring to 19.1 PPG and was a very effective offensive star for the team. In 2021, Dragic averaged 13.4 PPG in 50 games although he only started in 11 games. Dragic started slowing down in his production and is now a member of the Toronto Raptors.
7. Tim Hardaway - 17.3 PPG
(6 Seasons, 1996-2001)
One of the best players in Miami Heat history, Tim Hardaway was acquired from the Golden State Warriors in 1996 and averaged 17.2 PPG and 10.0 APG in 28 games. The following two seasons, Hardaway would make the All-Star Teams and prove to be one of the best offensive point guards in the NBA. Hardaway is responsible for one of the nastiest crossovers in NBA history and was an exceptional floor general.
Alongside Alonzo Mourning, Hardaway brought a ton of flash and excitement to the city of Miami. While Hardaway never had the type of postseason success he expected when he joined Miami, the point guard made 2 All-Star Teams and won an Olympic medal with Team USA representing the Heat. Not to mention, Tim is the all-time Heat leader in 3-pointers made.
6. Chris Bosh - 18.0 PPG
(6 Seasons, 2011-2016)
After years of making the All-Star Team with the Toronto Raptors, Chris Bosh famously joined LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in Miami to form a dynamic Big Three that would take the league by storm. Despite being reserved to the third option in the offense, Bosh wound up as one of the 10 greatest scorers in Miami Heat history. Due to his versatility as an attacker of the basket and a jump shooter, Bosh was key to the team making 4 straight Finals.
Whenever LeBron was on the squad, Bosh never averaged 20 PPG for a season after averaging over 20 PPG 5 times with the Raptors. 2 championships came as a result of that, and Bosh certainly won’t mind. Bosh had his highest-scoring season with the Heat in 2015 by averaging 21.1 PPG although he only appeared in 51 games. The future Hall of Famer would later retire as a result of blood clots.
5. Glen Rice - 19.3 PPG
(6 Seasons, 1990-1995)
Getting drafted with the No. 4 pick by the Heat in the 1990 season, Glen Rice was expected to have a major impact with the team and he certainly did. Making the All-Rookie Team averaging 13.6 PPG on 43.9% shooting, Rice showed potential as a scorer. Rice would see an uptick in his scoring numbers as he would average over 19 PPG for 4 seasons. More importantly, Glen Rice would develop into one of the best 3-point shooters in NBA history.
Rice would average 38.6% shooting from three during his 6 seasons with the Heat, taking that number to above 40.0% in his final season with Miami. Of course, Rice would use his time with the Heat to shoot over 40% with the Charlotte Hornets en route to making 2 All-Star Teams. Glen Rice even averaged 47.0% shooting from three in the 1997 season, and it was his development as a great scorer with the Heat that was the base for this growth.
4. Shaquille O’Neal - 19.6 PPG
(4 Seasons, 2005-2008)
Anywhere Shaquille O’Neal plays, he appears among the best scorers. After all, who can truly defend a man who is 7’1” and 325 lbs? Shaq, despite being slightly older and less dominant, was still a monster of a paint presence and helped a young Dwyane Wade flourish to lead the Heat to a championship in 2006. As an inside scorer and brick wall, O’Neal was still one of the best centers in the game as a member of the Heat.
The Lakers broke the news outlets when they traded O’Neal to the Heat in an effort to build around the younger Kobe Bryant. Nobody knew what to expect of O’Neal and the Heat, especially after failing to make an impact in the 2005 season. O’Neal averaged 20.0 PPG and 9.2 RPG in the 2006 season, proving to be the most impactful season in his Heat career.
3. Jimmy Butler - 20.9 PPG
(3 Seasons, 2020-2022)
Jimmy Butler has only played for the Heat for 3 seasons but has made a massive impact. After years of mediocrity following the “Heatles” era with James, Wade, and Bosh; Miami was searching far and wide for their next superstar. They found it in Jimmy Butler, an impactful two-way star who built his career off hard work and dedication.
Butler has fit like a glove with Miami, making the Finals 2 years ago and checking in as the 3rd highest scorer in Heat history. Jimmy has also improved other areas of his game including his playmaking and leadership ability and has certainly arrived as one of the best players in the game. A clutch scorer and dominant defensive player, Butler made the right choice in choosing Miami in his last free agency period.
2. Dwyane Wade - 22.7 PPG
(15 Seasons, 2004-2016, 2018-2019)
The greatest Miami Heat player ever, Dwyane Wade appeared in 15 total seasons with the Miami Heat and never had success with any other franchise he played for. Wade was always going to be a Heat legend, especially after his dominant 2006 Finals run when he averaged 34.7 PPG to win the championship. As a slasher, very few shooting guards can match up with Wade in terms of explosiveness and aggression.
While Wade never won an MVP, he was consistently one of the top-five players in the game in his prime and would win a total of 3 championships and 1 Finals MVP with the Heat. Playing alongside LeBron James in Miami allowed Wade to extend his career and give the shooting guard time to widen the gap in all-time Heat scorers in total points. But in terms of PPG, Wade is second behind arguably the greatest small forward to ever play the game.
1. LeBron James - 26.9 PPG
(4 Seasons, 2011-2014)
Despite not being the greatest all-time Miami Heat player, LeBron might have been the most dominant in the time he was a part of the franchise. The King had already won 2 MVPs with the Cavaliers and carried them to multiple postseason appearances before joining forces with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami. 2 more MVP Awards would shortly ensue for LeBron, along with the postseason success he craved.
With James on the squad, the Heat made 4 straight Finals and captured 2 championships in 2012 and 2013. We also saw the evolution of LeBron from the NBA’s hero to the ultimate villain, especially after “The Decision” and also the shocking 2011 Finals performance. James worked out the final areas of his game that needed improving, such as his killer instinct in the biggest situations. Of course, that can be attributed to playing alongside Dwyane Wade who already won a title in 2006. LeBron is the greatest scorer in Maimi Heat history and it is by quite a margin, evidence of an all-time great player.
Most Points In Miami Heat History
Here are the ten players with the most total points in Miami Heat history:
1. Dwyane Wade - 21,556
2. Alonzo Mourning - 9,459
3. Glen Rice - 9,248
4. LeBron James - 7,919
5. Chris Bosh - 6,914
6. Rony Seikaly - 6,742
7. Udonis Haslem - 6,529
8. Goran Dragic - 6,348
9. Tim Hardaway - 6,335
10. Eddie Jones - 6,194