5 reasons the Phoenix Suns will beat the Miami Heat

Phoenix Suns (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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Phoenix Suns, Dario Saric (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns, Dario Saric (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

3. Dario Saric’s confidence off the bench

When Dario Saric was first relegated to the bench in favor of Mikal Bridges, he, understandably, wasn’t too thrilled about it. Now, he finds himself in a similar situation with Johnny-come-lately, Cameron Johnson, usurping him in the rotation.

Dario is taking that perceived slight and proving to everyone he is a high-caliber NBA role player.  Saric has so much more freedom to do this thing with the second unit. His rebounding is unimpeded, his hustle is contagious, and his scoring ability becomes a focal point rather than a nice-to-have.

Jevon Carter is capable of knocking down shots and often generates layups with his defense, but no one is going to mistake him for a bucket-getter. Frank Kaminsky was a one-time consistent producer off the bench earlier this year, but seven months with no basketball and a kneecap fracture recovery are proving to be more debilitating than expected.

That provides Dario Saric the freedom in a half-court set to flex, and thus far, he has taken advantage. In bubble play, you can essentially mark him down for 16 points and eight rebounds. It is nearly automatic.

Dario’s confidence off the bench can exploit the Heat’s depleted roster, and I expect another good game out of everyone’s favorite big-butted Croatian.