3 things Cavs’ J.B. Bickerstaff could learn from Heat’s Erik Spoelstra

Erik Spoelstra, Miami Heat. (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images)
Erik Spoelstra, Miami Heat. (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images) /
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J.B. Bickerstaff, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports) /

No. 2 thing Bickerstaff could learn from Spoelstra: Have a Plan B

One of the bigger issues that come to the forefront often when you watch Bickerstaff coach games is that he generally doesn’t have a “Plan B.” His ability to shift on the fly and adjust his game plan isn’t very noticeable. This is in sharp contrast to a coach like Spoelstra.

Van Gundy again was quoted recently as saying this about Spoelstra, in the story from Chiang.

"“By the time you get to the playoffs, you better have some alternatives based on who you’re playing….like can we switch, can we drop, can we blitz people, can we double team, can we zone? Erik builds that in. So when they get to these times of the year, you’re not trying to go into a walk through for one hour and put something in you haven’t done all year. They’ve done it throughout the year. He gets his team ready for this time of the year during the regular season.”"

That was on full display in the Heat’s recent Game 2 win against the Boston Celtics. Miami was able to crawl back into the game by installing a zone defense, something they had not deployed much at all up to that point.

That type of ability to recognize what is needed at the moment is something that is a real strength of Spoelstra and one big problem for Bickerstaff.

One could foresee in the Knicks series that the Cavaliers were not able to adjust on the fly, and in plenty of instances, they seemed to be way too predictable in set offense, especially, and the Knicks were able to force them into stagnation too frequently in games. One could see this type of issue potentially occurring, too, as prior to the postseason, Cleveland had difficulty getting the job done in games that were tight down the stretch, and on the road, they looked out of sorts.