Tyler Herro has had his struggles this season, but should the Miami Heat legitimately be concerned about his focus?
After a trip to the NBA Finals in the bubble last season, things haven’t quite been the same for the Miami Heat this season. Tyler Herro is one example of the drop-off, particularly with a markedly lower conversion rate from beyond the arc this year after a nice rookie season.
Herro is actually averaging more points, assists and rebounds per game than he did in the regular season as a rookie. It’s really just his 3-point shooting percentages that’s down. But the Heat apparently have broader concerns about the 13th overall pick in the 2019 draft.
On a recent edition of the “Inside The Paint” podcast, Heat writers Ethan Skolnick and Ira Winderman revealed the Heat have been concerned about Herro’s growing celebrity status.
Tyler Herro chose to become a celebrity,” Winderman said. “He chose to become something outside the game, as is his right. With his breakfast cereal, and his Tyler Tuesdays, and his Chipotle Bowl and that’s all well and good. But you know what? Other players when they see a player doing that before they’ve truly reached it. I don’t know if I want to say there’s a jealousy. … They sort of take a scant view of the guy and say, ‘Wait a minute buddy. You haven’t done anything yet.’”
Skolnick added a punchline.
“Ultimately, the team starts to get a certain level of concern,” he said. “In this particular case, the team has been concerned now for months.”
The trappings of quick stardom, coming off a breakout performance during the Heat’s run to the Finals, could very well be hard for Herro to navigate. People want to talk you, they want you to endorse their product, etc. Teammates surely have noticed if his work ethic has changed. In particular, Jimmy Butler would be one to call someone out specifically, privately or publicly.
Herro has struggled lately. In his last four games, before missing Monday night’s game against Houston with a foot injury, he is 2-for-14 from 3-point range and 12-for-41 from the floor with single-digit points in three straight. But that can be chalked up to the injury. Over 13 games prior to his last four, he averaged 15.3 points per game while shooting a little over 36 percent from beyond the arc.
While there may be legitimate concerns internally about Herro becoming a “celebrity”, it hasn’t really shown in his broad performance this season. He’s had up-and-downs, sure, but a short offseason followed by a compressed season has caused that for plenty of NBA players.