Washington Wizards 2019-2020 Season Preview: the Miami Heat

Washington Wizards Bradley Beal and Miami Heat Josh Richardson (Photo by Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Washington Wizards Bradley Beal and Miami Heat Josh Richardson (Photo by Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images) /

Matchups between the Miami Heat and Washington Wizards will feature two alpha stars leading their supporting casts in efforts to contend in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Washington record versus Miami last season:1-3

Heat added: Jimmy Butler, Meyers Leonard, KZ Okpala, Tyler Herro

Heat lost: Josh Richardson, Dwyane Wade, Hassan Whiteside

As we continue our preview of the upcoming Washington Wizards season, we have arrived at a matchup that will feature a star talent playing with a new team against the Washington Wizards: Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat.

Washington faired pretty poorly against Miami last season, but both teams could be considered brand new heading into the 2019-20 season. The Wizards won just one of their four divisional matchups against the Heat last year, but the games were close. The Wizards’ average margin of victory was just four points.

Star vs. Star, or Potential Teammates?

But it’s a new era in Miami. The beginning of Jimmy Butler’s reign. Butler agreed to a sign-and-trade deal that sent the Heat’s best defender from last season, Josh Richardson, to Philadelphia, but brought home a superstar talent.

It’ll make this matchup a must-watch for fans of both teams, and all the more difficult for the Wizards. When suited up with Philadelphia, albeit in a lesser role, Butler still produced in his three games against Washington. As a 76er, he averaged 18 points, 7 rebounds, and 2.6 steals per game vs the Wizards.

So while Miami may have gotten rid of their best defender in Richardson, they acquired an even better one in Butler. Plus, Butler’s offensive game is far and away better than Richardson’s.

Still, Bradley Beal had his way in games against the Heat last season, averaging: 21.7 points, 4 rebounds, and 3 rebounds per matchup.

Now with two clear cut faces of their respective clubs, Miami versus Washington contests may turn into Bradley Beal versus Jimmy Butler.

Part of what makes this matchup so interesting is continuous rumors of Miami interest in trading for Beal. With an extension offer on the table, but yet to be agreed upon, the trade rumors will only grow in coming months.

In their search for a second star to pair with Butler, the Heat reportedly reached out to the Wizards about a potential deal for the star guard, per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.

It’s unclear what Miami would be able to offer that would entice Washington enough to offer up Beal, but their matchups in the coming year will be a good showcase of what the Heat’s roster has as far as potential trade pieces.

These games will also be a good showcase of two lottery draft picks from the most recent draft class in Tyler Herro (Miami) and Rui Hachimura (Washington). Maybe a battle between two potential Rookie of the Year candidates?

2019-2020 Game Predictions

December 6th: Away Against Miami

It’s fortunate for the Wizards that their first matchup against the newly armed Heat won’t be until December. They’ve got a number of players already dealing with injury that will likely be well enough to return by this point. However, it’s all the more time for Miami to adjust to life with Butler, their new focal point on the offense. Washington opens the series with a loss on the road.

December 30th: Wizards Host the Heat

These two teams will play for the second time in a month up at the Capitol One Arena, amidst a six-game homestand for the Wizards.

After playing the rebuilding New York Knicks in two of their last three games, it’s likely the Wizards are riding high and take a commanding win at home over the Heat.

January 20th: Miami Hosts Washington

Fast forward to January 20th, 2020. At this point, there’s a 50% chance Beal is still with the team, and the Wizards haven’t opted towards a full rebuild. Washington will open this four-game road trip with a loss to the Heat.

dark. Next. Washington Wizards 2019-20 Season Preview: Orlando Magic

March 8th: Heat visit the Wizards in garbage time

If you’re not watching a playoff team in March, you’re likely not watching great basketball. It can be fun basketball, sure, but that doesn’t make it pretty. Berthing the Eastern Conference playoff race is already a slim-chanced outcome for this Wizards team. And that’s if Beal’s there all season.

But if there’s any deal that sends Beal out of Washington in exchange for young talent/draft picks, then say goodbye to any more than 10 wins following the February deadline. Miami will close the seasons series with their third win of the season over the Wizards.