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NBA Draft 2020: Picking Jalen Smith could add some much-needed defensive integrity to the Miami Heat

Jalen Smith
Jalen Smith
Modified 20 Oct 2020, 19:53 IST

The Miami Heat were the NBA's Cinderella story last season, going from a team that wasn't expected to crack the postseason to one that was only two games away from winning it all. With the self-proclaimed underdogs looking to get stronger ahead of next season, the NBA Draft 2020 could be an interesting place to start for the franchise.

The Miami Heat have the 20th pick in this year's draft. While it isn't a lottery pick, there is plenty for the franchise to be excited about one player: Maryland forward Jalen Smith.

While many fans may understandably not recognize the prospect's potential just yet, the 20-year-old could undoubtedly take the Miami Heat to the next level. And so, here are two reasons why the franchise must look to draft Jalen Smith during the NBA Draft 2020.

NBA Draft 2020: The Miami Heat need more size and versatility

Size was where the Miami Heat seemed deficient in during the 2020 NBA Finals.
Size was where the Miami Heat seemed deficient in during the 2020 NBA Finals.

While the 2020 NBA Finals was interesting, the Miami Heat were clearly the inferior of the two teams. On too many occasions, the LA Lakers dominated the Heat, using the lack of size in their opponent's roster to take huge leads in the games.

While Bam Adebayo is one of the best big men in the league, having just one versatile big in the team is nowhere near enough. This is exactly where Jalen Smith could help the franchise.

Smith is a 6'10" forward who can not only put the ball on the floor but also has a reliable outside shot. As a 20-year-old, Jalen Smith matches up perfectly with the young Miami Heat roster. And when you consider how good the franchise is in developing young players, the Maryland forward could very well become an All-Star for the team pretty soon.

Considering all these factors, the Miami Heat have a player who could potentially be a star in the NBA and also take the franchise to the next level in the near future.


NBA Draft 2020: Jalen Smith would make the Heat's defense far more resilient

Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo need to do far too much at the defensive end.
Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo need to do far too much at the defensive end.

While the Miami Heat are an above-average defensive team, even elite on their day, Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo have to do far too much to maintain the team's defensive integrity.

The phrase "Defense wins championships" in the world of basketball could not be more true, something the Miami Heat need to take to heart.

Picking Jalen Smith in the NBA Draft 2020 could take a massive load off the two players. While Smith's offensive upside is high, his potential at the defensive end is simply staggering.

Not only is the 20-year-old versatile as a defender, he is also an elite rim protector. If given time to develop, the 20-year-old could form one of the most resilient frontcourts in the NBA along with Butler and Adebayo, which could help the Miami Heat become a more formidable team next season.


Considering his attributes, Jalen Smith would be an absolute steal as the 20th pick, so the Miami Heat need to do whatever they can to acquire him on Draft Night 2020.

Also Read: NBA Free Agency 2020: Top 5 small forwards available this off-season.

Published 20 Oct 2020, 19:53 IST
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