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  1. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the Toronto Raptors Thursday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT defeated the Raptors 104-89 in their last meeting on March 11. Tip-off is set for 7:30 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 7:00 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: What did the HEAT do well to get back on track against the Suns? Couper Moorhead: They played defense. Granted the starters came out a little slow on that end but once the bench unit was in towards the end of the first quarter the Suns were held to an offensive rating below 90 the rest of the way. Phoenix isn’t exactly an offensive powerhouse this time of year – Eric Bledsoe is being held out – and had plenty of unforced turnovers of their own but the opponent isn’t always the most important thing when it comes to getting back to your own established habits. Miami probably could have beat the Suns on Tuesday with scoring alone, but working on their game will help them in the long run with tougher opponents coming up. Joe Beguiristain: After a slow start to the contest, the HEAT got things going in the second quarter to take control of the game. In particular, Wayne Ellington caught fire towards the end of the period and helped Miami jump out to a 13-point lead at halftime. From that point on, the HEAT locked-in defensively (especially Hassan Whiteside) and held the Suns to just 39.5 percent shooting. Other than Whiteside, both Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson defended Tyler Ulis and Devin Booker quite well. In fact, Johnson led the team with five steals and helped Miami get some easy buckets in transition (the HEAT ended up with 19 fast break points on the night). In other words, Miami took care of business on its home floor against a depleted Phoenix squad. 2: Since Toronto didn’t have Kyle Lowry in the last meeting, what can we take away from that game? Couper: That the Raptors, despite an impressive comeback win over Chicago on Tuesday, miss Kyle Lowry. Last time these teams played the Raptors were playing on a back-to-back, which is always a factor, but despite a 26-point first quarter the Raptors never really seemed to get much of an offensive rhythm going as DeMar DeRozan was asked to do a ton of shot creation. Through the first three quarters, before the Raptors essentially played their bench the rest of the way, Toronto’s expected effective field-goal percentage, based on shot quality, was 47.6 – a number that would rank last in the league. Additionally, Toronto will be without the services of Serge Ibaka on Thursday. Ibaka was given a one-game suspension after an on-court incident with Robin Lopez on Tuesday. Joe: In that last matchup, the HEAT dominated the Raptors in nearly every facet. Six players scored in double-figures for Miami, while the team also held Toronto to just 37.5 percent shooting. Like Coup stated above, the Raptors did have some trouble initiating offense with Lowry out. As a whole, Toronto’s offense has dipped with its floor general out of the lineup. Before the All-Star Break, the team ranked fourth in offensive rating at 110.9 points per 100 possessions. In the 14 games since then without Lowry, the Raptors are ranked 16th with a 105.7 rating. Luckily, their defense has improved enough for them to go 9-5 since the break. New addition P.J. Tucker has had a lot to do with that, as the versatile forward is holding the opposition to 6.5 percentage points less than their usual field goal percentage since joining Toronto. We’ll see how things transpire on Thursday night. 3: If Miami is without Hassan Whiteside (hand laceration), how will Miami adjust? Couper: Likely as they always have this season, with Willie Reed starting and heavy doses of James Johnson as a small-ball center. This isn’t the easiest matchup for that configuration considering Jonas Valanciunas is a load to deal with and Toronto can put out just as many versatile lineups as Miami with Ibaka, Patrick Patterson and new arrival P.J. Tucker. Even if Ibaka isn’t available, the Raptors can still play small with Miami. And of course Udonis Haslem is always an option, one that Erik Spoelstra can trust to adhere to the defensive system as well as anyone. Joe: If Whiteside can’t play on Thursday night, we’ll likely see Willie Reed in the starting lineup. In his five starts this season, Reed has averaged 14.8 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game on 68.6 percent shooting. After practice on Wednesday, the 26-year-old stated that his role doesn’t change in the starting lineup and that it’s still about bringing energy. “It’s not about the points. It’s about the energy that I can bring to the team, you know, holding down the inside [and] the paint, rebounding and trying to provide what Hassan provides.” Things will be tough with a skilled big in Jonas Valanciunas on the other side, but Reed has the mental makeup to get the job done. INJURY UPDATE: Coach Spo said Whiteside (hand) was a full participant in Thursday morning's shootaround and still intends to play. Highlights: March 11-Raptors at HEAT Game Notes: The HEAT have won three of four and are 35-36 on the year. The Raptors have won four of five and stand at 42-29. Miami is 16-3 at home in 2017. DeMar DeRozan leads Toronto in scoring at 27.0 points per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 105.1 (17) HEAT Defense: 104.0 (5) Raptors Offense: 109.9 (5) Raptors Defense: 105.3 (10)
  2. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT defeated the Phoenix Suns 112-97 Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Hassan Whiteside led the way for the HEAT with 23 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  3. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon At 3:30 PM EST, I will ask a trivia question for a pair of tickets to tomorrow night’s game against the Raptors. Please keep in mind that you must be at least 18-years-old in order to qualify and must reside in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach or Monroe County. Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this calendar month. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.
  4. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the Portland Trail Blazers Sunday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT fell to the Portland Trail Blazers 99-92 in their last meeting on December 3. Tip-off is set for 6:00 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 5:30 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: What did Miami do so well in their high-scoring victory over the Timberwolves? Couper Moorhead: They, well, scored. Which is an understatement. The HEAT had some trouble corralling the deadly combination of Karl-Anthony Towns and the newly transformational Ricky Rubio, same as just about every team lately, but were able to outscore them all the same posting an offensive rating of 125.1. Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside used 19 pick-and-rolls between the two of them and produced an extremely high 1.42 points-per-pick – to the point where Minnesota’s defenders appeared flummoxed as to what sort of coverage they were supposed to apply. And that’s a good part of what’s been so incredible about this recent Miami run. This is a defensive team through and through, but it seems just about whenever they need a sustained offensive burst they execute with precision and make shots, from everywhere, in bunches. Joe Beguiristain: The HEAT operated like a well-oiled machine against the Timberwolves. Since Coup already mentioned the excellent two-man game between Goran Dragić and Hassan Whiteside, I’ll touch upon the Brothers Johnson. While their sharp play off the bench is nothing new at this point, they took it to a whole other level on Friday night. James Johnson got things started with a superb first half in which he played excellent defense and kept Minnesota guessing with his varied offensive approach. From attacks to the basket to pull-up jumpers, the forward did a little bit of everything. Of course, he also set up his teammates with some fantastic passes throughout the evening. T. Johnson, meanwhile, stepped up in the absence of Dion Waiters (who sprained his left ankle) and scored 15 of his 23 points in the third quarter on a perfect 6-of-6 shooting. Furthermore, the HEAT outscored the Timberwolves by 25 points in the 27 minutes that Johnson & Johnson were on the court together on Friday night. That’s impressive. 2: What should we remember from the last meeting with Portland? Couper: For starters, that game took place during the portion of the season in which Dion Waiters was injured, and given that he had to exit Friday’s game with a sprained ankle of which we do not know the severity, this could be another Blazers game they don’t have Waiters for. That Blazers game was fairly even throughout despite James Johnson being ejected after playing just 17 minutes, and Miami even held a six-point lead with three minutes to play. But C.J. McCollum nailed a three off a designed set immediately after a timeout and Miami managed just one more point in those final three minutes. Perhaps there was some fatigue involved given that this game took place just two days after the dreaded Denver-Utah back-to-back (which Miami swept), but even during Miami’s more depleted stretch of the season they managed to hang with Portland’s excellent offense. These were the types of close games, lost earlier in the season, that Miami seems to win every time lately. Joe: We should remember that the HEAT hung in tough against the Trail Blazers even though Waiters, Luke Babbitt, Josh Richardson and Justise Winslow were all out with injuries. Despite their absence, Whiteside had a fantastic outing, as he scored 28 points, grabbed 16 rebounds and blocked five shots in 41 minutes of action. With not that many players available for Miami, the big fella emptied the tank in the fourth and gave his team a few leads late in the period. That said, C.J. McCollum took over down the stretch and sealed the deal for the Trail Blazers. While that may have been the case, the HEAT did a nice job overall on Portland’s backcourt and forced McCollum and Damian Lillard to shoot just 13-of-37 (35.1 percent) combined from the field. With Richardson now back in the fray and Miami playing better on the defensive end recently, perhaps it can limit those guys once more. 3: How has Portland been playing since their trade for Jusuf Nurkic? Couper: An already very-good offensive team has been even better as Portland is scoring 110.7 points per 100 possessions with Nurkic on the court – and their defense has been closer to league-average than before in those same minutes. Nurkic had been somewhat buried on Denver’s bench during the breakout play of Nikola Jokic, but now that he’s starting and is back in a featured role he’s showing off a complete array of skills. He’s capable of scoring inside, shooting outside (not yet from three), setting hard screens and, perhaps surprising to some, being a very strong passer as he’s averaging 3.3 assists for every 36 minutes. Different, and bigger, player, but he’s filling the same playmaking role as Mason Plumlee while offering a bit more of the true-center skills that Portland needed. Joe: Since Nurkic was inserted into the starting lineup on February 23, the Trail Blazers have gone 8-4. As Coup stated above, the center has made an impact on both ends of the floor upon his arrival. The 7-foot Nurkic sets effective screens, finishes at the rim and effortlessly dishes the rock to his teammates from the post. The way he palms a basketball and secures it with one hand makes it look like he’s holding a softball. Not to mention, Nurkic shows great instincts on the defensive end and can cover ground quickly in help-side situations. When you put all these things together, you have a perfect fit for Portland’s dynamic backcourt. Highlights: December 3-HEAT at Trail Blazers Game Notes: The HEAT have won six of seven and are 34-35. The Trail Blazers have won five of seven and are 31-37. Miami is currently the seven seed in the Eastern Conference. Damian Lillard leads Portland in points (26.5) and assists (5.8) per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 105.0 (18) HEAT Defense: 104.0 (5) Trail Blazers Offense: 107.2 (12) Trail Blazers Defense: 108.7 (26)
  5. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the Phoenix Suns Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT fell to the Suns 99-90 in their last meeting on January 3. Tip-off is set for 7:30 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 7:00 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: What did you take away from Miami’s loss to Portland on Sunday? Couper Moorhead: That Damian Lillard is incredible, mostly. Watching Lillard expertly navigate the pick-and-roll, pulling up for effortless split-second threes and then threading passes to a rolling Jusuf Nurkic when Miami attempted to pressure higher on the floor was reminiscent of Steph Curry last season. Of course we can’t make that comparison if the shots aren’t falling as well and Lillard delivered with 9-of-12 from three and 49 points on 21 shots. In short, it was as good an offensive performance as you’ll see all year and a surprisingly energetic defensive one as well, especially considering Portland was on a back-to-back. On Miami’s side, their defense wasn’t quite as active as it had been lately and a number of players being in foul trouble didn’t help, but in the bigger picture it was clear there might be a bit of an adjustment period to playing without Dion Waiters. We’ll get to that in a moment. Joe Beguiristain: While the HEAT played well offensively for the most part, their defense wasn’t quite up to par. In particular, Damian Lillard had one heck of a performance, as he nearly tallied a career high and finished with 49 points on 14-of-21 shooting. Although the HEAT could have done a better job of defending him in the pick-and-roll, Lillard was in such a zone that it might not have made a difference. That said, Miami understands that it needs to get back to its identity and lock-in on the defensive end. From Erik Spoelstra to James Johnson, that message was echoed often after practice on Monday. With Phoenix struggling mightily on the offensive end as of late (especially with a bunch of key contributors out of the lineup), expect the HEAT to apply a lot of pressure from the get-go. 2: What changes have there been to the Suns roster lately? Couper: There’s been quite a few. Eric Bledsoe has been shut down for the rest of the season, as has Tyson Chandler. Brandon Knight has been experiencing back spasms and, as of now, doesn’t appear to be expected to play. Dragan Bender had ankle surgery in early February and has yet to return. And Devin Booker has also had an ankle injury and its unclear if he’ll be able to play Tuesday night. However you slice it, this isn’t going to be the same Phoenix team that beat Miami back in early January. Joe: Coup pretty much hit the nail on the head. The Suns have a multitude of guys either shut down for the season or nursing injuries. As such, Head Coach Earl Watson rolled with a starting unit of Tyler Ulis, Derrick Jones, T.J. Warren, Marquese Chriss and Alen Len in Phoenix’s last game against the Pistons on March 19. Of those players, Warren and Chriss have been mainstays in the starting lineup for most of the year. Not to mention, they’ve also stepped up in the absence of a lot of the Suns’ playmakers. In fact, Warren is averaging 17.3 points, 7.6 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks per game on 58.3 percent shooting since the All-Star Break. Chriss meanwhile, is posting 12.0 points, 5.3 boards and 1.8 blocks per contest on 52.2 percent shooting over that same timespan. 3: Are there any further adjustments you expect Miami to make with Dion Waiters out? Couper: Miami still managed to post 110.9 points per 100 possessions against Portland, but there clearly wasn’t as much of a rhythm or flow to the execution as there had been for most of the past two months. Just 43 percent of the HEAT’s baskets were assisted as whenever Goran Dragic was off the floor the offense often became James Johnson attacking from the perimeter and bullying his way to the rim. Johnson did that quite well, shooting 9-of-13, but it’s also the type of offense that becomes easier to defend the more often it’s used and more predictable it becomes. Not only did Miami miss Waiters’ dribble-penetration, spray passing and ability to space the floor off the ball, but he also gives Erik Spoelstra a playmaking option to stagger with Dragic so that, along with Miami’s bench, there are always multiple ballhandlers on the floor. Moving forward, we may see Spoelstra experiment a bit with the rotation to try and keep the ball moving. Or, as is often the case, Miami will simply have to be better on that end and work harder to adhere to their habits without one of the players who makes things work. Joe: In addition to getting back to their defensive principles, I expect the HEAT to try and get the ball moving a bit more on offense. After dishing out 29 assists in an offensive explosion against Minnesota, Miami had just 18 against Portland. Keep in mind that when the HEAT tally at least 26 assists, they’re 7-3 this season. You know Goran Dragić and James Johnson are going to attack the paint and collapse the defense, but Miami’s other wings also have to do their part and help set up their teammates too. Luckily enough, Josh Richardson and Tyler Johnson have had their moments over the past few weeks. T. Johnson tallied a career-high nine assists against the Pelicans on March 15, while Richardson has gradually improved since his return to the lineup from a foot injury. We’ll see if both guards can create a little bit more off the dribble to make up for the absence of Dion Waiters. Highlights: January 3-HEAT at Suns Game Notes: The HEAT have won two of three and are 34-36. The Suns have dropped four straight and enter the contest at 22-48. Goran Dragić leads Miami in points (20.3) and assists (6.0) per game. Alex Len leads Phoenix with 1.2 blocks per contest. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 105.1 (16) HEAT Defense: 104.3 (6) Suns Offense: 103.8 (23) Suns Defense: 108.8 (26)
  6. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon At 3:45 PM EST, I will ask a trivia question for a pair of tickets to tomorrow night’s game against the Suns. Please keep in mind that you must be at least 18-years-old in order to qualify and must reside in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach or Monroe County. Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this calendar month. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.
  7. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT fell to the Portland Trail Blazers 115-104 Sunday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. James Johnson led the way for the HEAT with 24 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  8. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 123-105 Friday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Hassan Whiteside and Tyler Johnson each led the HEAT with 23 points apiece. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  9. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon At 5:30 PM EST, I will ask a trivia question for a pair of tickets to tomorrow night’s game against the Trail Blazers. Please keep in mind that you must be at least 18-years-old in order to qualify and must reside in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach or Monroe County. Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this calendar month. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.
  10. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the Minnesota Timberwolves Friday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT defeated the Timberwolves 115-113 in their last meeting on February 6. Tip-off is set for 8:00 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 7:30 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: How did Miami pull away for a win against New Orleans on Wednesday? Couper Moorhead: Goran Dragic returned from an ugly eye injury to score 33 points on 5-of-9 from three and Hassan Whiteside continued his stretch of strong, consistent play with 20 points and 17 rebounds, but the player who really swung the game was Wayne Ellington (5-of-8 from three). Running the usual floppy offense to spring Ellington open for threes, he did his job and hit a couple early in the fourth quarter – and they weren’t easy shots, either. In fact Ellington was hitting such tough shots, which can typically frustrate an opponent, that the Pelicans’ defense bugged out a little and started overhelping as he ran off screens. This led to open threes for Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson plus a wide-open dunk for Hassan Whiteside. New Orleans had temporarily taken a decent lead in the second half, but Ellington being the on the court led to Miami making all of the shots. Joe Beguiristain: It was the Return of the Dragon. After missing Sunday’s game against the Pacers with a right orbital contusion, Goran Dragić had a fantastic outing on Wednesday night. Throughout the contest, the Slovenian raced out in transition and came through with some amazing finishes at the rim. That said, he also remained hot from beyond the arc, as he shot 5-of-9 from distance against New Orleans. While Dragić was instrumental in the win, James Johnson also made some big plays down the stretch. In fact, Johnson scored eight points and tallied a plus-eight rating in the fourth quarter alone. Those guys stood out, but the HEAT as a whole fared very well on the offensive end. When it was all said and done, Miami tallied 23 assists and shot 16-of-35 from downtown. The Pelicans entered the night with the third best defensive rating since the All-Star Break, so the HEAT's offensive output was pretty impressive. 2: What can we learn from Miami’s last game against Minnesota? Couper: That you have to be careful with the Timberwolves. Miami again made all of the shots at the beginning of that road trip, shooting 15-of-28 from three and 52.3 percent overall, but the Wolves posted an Offensive Rating over 120 themselves and nearly stole the game in the final minute after a few HEAT turnovers. Minnesota might be without Zach LaVine for the rest of the season, but they’re still athletic and talented enough to jump on any mistake you might make. Joe: We learned that Minnesota is still highly capable even without Zach LaVine. In that last matchup on February 6, both Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins put on a show in front of their home crowd. In particular, Wiggins scored six straight points for the Timberwolves after the HEAT took a seven-point lead with 1:45 remaining in the game. Luckily enough, J. Johnson forced a miss from the 22-year-old with 0.9 seconds left to ensure the victory for Miami. Although the HEAT’s offense was firing on all cylinders against Minnesota, the defense wasn’t quite up to par. We’ll see if they can clean that up this time around. 3: What is behind Minnesota’s relative resurgence of late? Couper: The Wolves are 9-6 since February 8 with wins over Toronto, Utah, Washington, Golden State and the Clippers – plus an overtime loss on the road to the Spurs. During that stretch their offense has actually been even better than Miami’s, with an offensive rating of 111.0, and their defense has been on the outskirts of the Top 10. Much of that success is due to the play of Ricky Rubio who is having one of his best months ever scoring 17.3 points in seven March games on 48.8 percent shooting and the usual double digit assists. When Rubio has been on the floor since February 8, the Wolves are scoring 114.1 points per 100 possessions – a mark that would top even the Warriors and Rockets for the full season. Joe: While the Timberwolves have continued to be a force offensively, their improvement on the defense end has been very important. Since the All-Star Break, Minnesota ranks sixth in defensive rating at 102.4. Keep in mind that the team was giving up 108.3 points per 100 possessions before that point. Although it’s been a collective effort to better that mark, Wiggins has really stepped up defensively as of late. When the Timberwolves are clicking on both ends of the floor, they’re pretty tough to beat. We all know what Wiggins and Towns bring to the table, but a lot of people forget about Ricky Rubio and how he factors into the equation. Since February 1, only John Wall has averaged more assists per game than the Spaniard. Highlights: February 6-HEAT at Timberwolves Game Notes: The HEAT have won five of six and are 33-35. The Timberwolves have won three of five and stand at 28-39. Miami is currently ninth in the Eastern Conference, but has the same record as eighth-seeded Detroit (the Pistons hold the tiebreaker). Karl-Anthony Towns leads Minnesota in points (24.3), rebounds (12.3) and blocks (1.4) per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 104.7 (19) HEAT Defense: 103.9 (5) Timberwolves Offense: 107.7 (11) Timberwolves Defense: 107.4 (22)
  11. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 120-112 Wednesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Goran Dragić led the way for the HEAT with 33 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  12. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon At 2:30 PM EST, I will ask a trivia question for a pair of tickets to tomorrow night’s game against the Timberwolves. Please keep in mind that you must be at least 18-years-old in order to qualify and must reside in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach or Monroe County. Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this calendar month. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.
  13. Photo Credit: Oscar Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the New Orleans Pelicans Wednesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT fell to the Pelicans 91-87 in their last meeting on December 23. Tip-off is set for 7:30 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 7:00 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: Is there anything we can take away from Miami’s loss in Indiana or is that one we can mostly forget about? Couper Moorhead: While it’s true that this was a tough bit of scheduling with a 6 pm game following an 8 pm start the night before, and Goran Dragić did not play, there were still some issues down the stretch worth cleaning up. The HEAT have been winning close games in bunches lately with a ton of big shots from just about everyone on the roster, but the challenge that comes with that is making sure you’re taking the best shots you can get – not easy, given the slower, defensive focus of late-game situations – and not settling for shots that happened to go in before. Fatigue no doubt played a role, but Miami managed just five points on 20 percent shooting in the final minutes as Indiana regained the lead. Come the postseason, should they make it, sustaining habits into the most high-leverage of situations will be crucial. Joe Beguiristain: Despite the quick turnaround with no Goran Dragić, the HEAT fought extremely hard against the Pacers. Thanks to the continued hot shooting of Wayne Ellington (eight points on 3-of-5 shooting in the fourth), Miami took a few late leads before Myles Turner closed things out for Indiana. While the HEAT’s effort was remarkable given the circumstances, the offense was stagnant at times down the stretch. Overall, you could definitely tell the team missed Dragić and his ability to break down the defense both in the half court and in transition. That said, Dion Waiters assumed the mantle of primary facilitator and led the team with six assists on Sunday night. When both guards are on the court together, Miami's offense is much more fluid. Luckily enough, Dragić went through all of Tuesday’s practice and had a simple answer when asked afterwards if he could play against the Pelicans. “Oh yeah, definitely.” 2: What did we learn from Miami’s loss to the Pelicans earlier this season? Couper: Both teams are so different now that there isn’t much valuable data to take away from a game two days before Christmas, but it does help illustrate just how valuable Miami’s bench has been this year. As strong as the core of Goran Dragić, Dion Waiters and Hassan Whiteside has been performing offensively, the bench units of James Johnson, Tyler Johnson and Willie Reed have carried a ton of defensive value themselves. But against the Pelicans is was the opponent bench that won the day, with Langton Galloway and E’Twaun Moore posting +19 and +15, respectively. That was also a tough scheduling game, with the team playing in Los Angeles the night before and then crossing time zones (hence the 41 percent shooting), but there’s little doubt how important the bench is to this particular group. Joe: While both teams are quite different now, we saw the importance of Dragić and Anthony Davis in that last meeting. With Waiters and Ellington out, the Slovenian led the HEAT with 23 points on 10-of-16 shooting and five assists on December 23. Although this game occurred right around the time Dragić started to get hot from beyond the arc, he also did damage at the rim in that last matchup. Regardless of who was guarding him, the crafty point guard found success early and often. On the Pelicans’ side, Davis had one of those monster games that he’s certainly capable of. Whether it was pick-and-pop threes or attacks to the basket, the 24-year-old did it all. We’ll see how Miami fares this time around with DeMarcus Cousins now in the fray. 3: How has the pairing of DeMarcus Cousins with Anthony Davis worked for the Pelicans so far? Couper: The results have been mixed so far. New Orleans is 4-6 since the All-Star break, with losses of both the close and not-so-close variety. The good news is that when Cousins and Davis have been on the floor together (179 minutes so far), the team has allowed just 96.6 points per 100 possessions. That’s elite defense no matter how you look at it. But the offense has been just a 92.1 per 100, which is the opposite end of the spectrum. Some of that is to be expected as it’s not easy incorporating two ball-dominant big men on the fly, not to mention that Cousins has been slumping a bit offensively. These two players are both so skilled, however, that you have to expect they’ll be able to find a balance and eventually be a force. Joe: The pairing of Cousins and Davis has largely been a work in progress thus far. Although New Orleans’ defense has improved since the All-Star Break, the offense has taken a dip (however, the team looked sharp on both ends against Portland on Tuesday). The struggles on offense may seem surprising since both guys are very gifted on that end, but chemistry always plays a role no matter how much talent a team has. At the end of the day, they’ve only played nine games together, and it takes time for pairings like these to come to fruition. As the season winds down, things should look a lot smoother for the Pelicans. Highlights: December 23-HEAT at Pelicans Game Notes: The HEAT have won 21 of their last 26 games and are 32-35. The Pelicans have won two straight and are 27-40 on the year. Hassan Whiteside has posted 45 double-doubles this season, which is eight shy of Rony Seikaly’s single-season franchise record. Anthony Davis leads New Orleans in points (27.9) and blocks (2.3) per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 104.5 (20) HEAT Defense: 103.9 (5) Pelicans Offense: 101.9 (27) Pelicans Defense: 104.1 (6)
  14. Photo Credit: Ron Hoskins The Miami HEAT fell to the Indiana Pacers 102-98 Sunday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Hassan Whiteside led the way for the HEAT with 26 points and 21 rebounds. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  15. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon At 2:30 PM EST, I will ask a trivia question for a pair of tickets to tomorrow night’s game against the Pelicans. Please keep in mind that you must be at least 18-years-old in order to qualify and must reside in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach or Monroe County. Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this calendar month. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.
  16. Photo Credit: Gregory Shamus The Miami HEAT face the Indiana Pacers Sunday night at Bankers Like Fieldhouse. The HEAT defeated the Pacers 113-95 in their last meeting on February 25. Tip-off is set for 6:00 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 5:30 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: How did the HEAT pull off such a commanding win over the Raptors? Couper Moorhead: By competing as if it were a playoff game, which it sort of was considering how tight things are for the final postseason slots. Yes, they made shots, Toronto was finishing a back-to-back and without Kyle Lowry, but when the HEAT play that hard and with that much purpose, setting hard screens, keeping the ball moving and fighting through everything on defense, they can beat just about anyone. Where you could really see the difference was in overall shot quality. The Raptors tend to run a ton of their offense through DeMar DeRozan and Lowry, which can slow things down to a crawl at time, and without Lowry to shoulder his part of the load the HEAT were able to jam up sets and force tough shot after tough shot while earning open, assisted looks early on. This wasn’t exactly a playoff preview, but it was a good look at how Miami will have to play should they get to that point. Joe Beguiristain: Thanks to the sharp play of Hassan Whiteside early on, Miami set the tone defensively and rode that momentum throughout the rest of the game. In the first half alone, the HEAT swatted six shots and came away with six steals. In addition to Whiteside, James Johnson also played quite well on the defensive end against Toronto. Whether it was a block on Cory Joseph at the rim or a block on Serge Ibaka at the three-point line, Johnson’s versatility was on full display. Although the Raptors inched closer and got within 11 with 5:11 left in the fourth, Miami responded well to make sure there would be no comeback. In all, the HEAT stifled Toronto and held the team to just 37.5 percent shooting. In particular, it took a collective effort from Rodney McGruder, Josh Richardson and even Johnson at times to limit DeMar DeRozan to just 5-of-16 shooting. That definitely went a long way in the 15-point victory. 2: If Goran Dragić is unable to play (orbital contusion), how does that affect this matchup? Couper: This is already a pretty strange game, scheduling wise, given that Miami tipped against Toronto at 8 pm and plays the next day in Indiana at 6 pm, which is really 5 pm due to Daylight Savings. Outside of noon games on the West Coast or back-to-backs in Denver, this is as tough a bit of scheduling that you’re going to find – and it might lead to Erik Spoelstra monitoring minutes a little bit more. Those minutes could also be affected by Spoelstra having to insert his starters back into the game when Toronto’s bench made a run late in the fourth quarter. As for Dragić’s absence, it won’t make things any easier given that Miami doesn’t have another true point guard on the roster. The HEAT have a ton of players capable of running a pick-and-roll but nobody who can quite duplicate the coast-to-coast playmaking, against ball pressure, of Dragić – the occasional James Johnson burst not withstanding. If Indiana brings the defensive pressure, as would be expected, the HEAT will need to keep the ball a step ahead of the defense at all times. Joe: If Dragić is unable to play, that could be troublesome for the HEAT. It’s no secret that Miami’s offense runs much smoother with the point guard in the lineup due to his playmaking skills and versatility. If he’s not attacking the teeth of the defense and finishing difficult layups in transition or in the half court, he’s driving and kicking to open guys on the perimeter. Not to mention, the Slovenian is also one of the team’s best three-point shooters (42.2 percent, second only to Luke Babbitt). While Dragić’s potential absence would be tough to overcome, Dion Waiters has a similar skill-set. Like Dragić, Waiters can also get by his man with ease and collapse the defense in the paint. In fact, each of the two guards is ranked among the league’s elite in drives per game. Dragić is second with 12.2 per contest, while Waiters averages 11.1 per outing. If the 30-year-old is out on Sunday, we’ll see if Waiters can carry the load against an Indiana team that has improved a bit defensively since the All-Star Break. 3: What are the playoff implications for Sunday night’s game? Couper: With Detroit and Milwaukee also winning on Saturday night, the HEAT only moved up to the No. 9 spot, ahead of Chicago, with their win. If Miami wins at Indiana they could move into a tie with Milwaukee for the final spot in the playoffs, but if Miami loses and Chicago beats Boston then the HEAT will find themselves back at No. 10. Such is life in the March postseason race, and there’s still a good long way to go. Joe: Things are very tight between seeds six through ten in the Eastern Conference. As it stands now, the HEAT are just a game and a half behind the Pacers for the sixth seed. If Miami wins, it’ll be tied with Milwaukee for the eighth seed, but if it loses it could drop from its current spot depending on how Chicago fares against Boston. Although it’s easy to get caught up in the standings, the HEAT just need to focus on the things that they can control. As long as they do that, all should be fine. Highlights: February 25-Pacers at HEAT Game Notes: The HEAT have won four straight and are 32-34. The Pacers have dropped two of three and are 33-32 on the year. Miami is currently a half game back of the Bucks for the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. Paul George leads Indiana in scoring at 22.1 points per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 104.5 (20) HEAT Defense: 103.8 (5) Pacers Offense: 105.4 (15) Pacers Defense: 106.2 (18)
  17. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT defeated the Toronto Raptors 104-89 Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Dion Waiters led the way for the HEAT with 20 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  18. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 120-92 Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Goran Dragić led the way for the HEAT with 23 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  19. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the Toronto Raptors Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT fell to the Raptors 96-87 in their last meeting on November 4. Tip-off is set for 8:00 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 7:30 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: What impressed you the most about Miami’s win over Charlotte? Couper Moorhead: The defense stood out, which might sound odd considering the explosive scoring nights from Goran Dragic and Dion Waiters and the fact that the defensive numbers weren’t all that strong in the end. But Hassan Whiteside did his job and kept Kemba Walker running a two-man pick-and-roll game all night as the HEAT’s other defenders stayed home on shooters and prevented assisted threes. Walker had some success in those situations, but the HEAT were able to do the same to all of Charlotte’s potential ballhandlers, some of whom ran into Whiteside in the paint and just had to retreat and start over again. Charlotte could have still won the game in the final minutes were it not for Waiters’ high-wire act, but they would have been scoring on Miami’s terms – just as the HEAT like it. Joe Beguiristain: Miami’s resiliency down the stretch really stood out to me. While the team has shown grit and resolve all year, Wednesday night’s contest had a playoff feel to it. In all, there were 11 lead changes and eight ties, with the final lead change coming off a Willie Reed tip-in to put the HEAT up for good with 8:26 remaining in the game. Although Miami never relinquished its lead, it fought off attacks from both Nicolas Batum and Kemba Walker. In particular, Josh Richardson did a great job of defending Walker throughout the contest, while Tyler Johnson took it from there in the fourth. James Johnson, meanwhile, disrupted Nicolas Batum often throughout the night and switched off at the right time. In short, it was more of the same from one of the hottest teams in the league. From J. Johnson showing his versatility to Dion Waiters hitting dagger threes, it was all on display. 2: Is there anything we can take from the loss to the Raptors back at the beginning of the season? Couper: No, not really. While that November 4 loss is a little different from all the other early season games because it was one of the few the HEAT were actually healthy for, the rotation was different, the style of play was far from being figured out and it was against a different Toronto team than the one we’ll see Saturday night. While DeMar DeRozan sealed that win down the stretch on an off night for Kyle Lowry (out Saturday night), it was Terrence Ross whose off-screen three-point shooting pace Toronto for most of the night. Ross, as you know, is now in Orlando. Joe: That game honestly felt like two seasons ago. In that last matchup on November 4, Miami was still trying to figure out how to play together. Although Johnson and Johnson provided a spark off the bench and Hassan Whiteside feasted inside, there’s not much else that resembles this current HEAT team. Not to mention, the Raptors look a little different themselves. With Kyle Lowry out due to wrist surgery, Cory Joseph is now in the starting lineup. Furthermore, Toronto traded Terrence Ross for Serge Ibaka and has started the Congo native at power forward ever since. 3: How have Toronto’s roster changes the way they play? Couper: When fully healthy, this Raptors team might be the best iteration of this group – with the DeRozan/Lowry core – we’ve seen. Lowry is out for a while longer and we don’t know if DeMarre Carroll will be able to play, but in adding Serge Ibaka and P.J. Tucker, both of whom can shoot while defending multiple positions – Toronto can field a lineup that can fit just about any style of play. That makes this an interesting matchup for Miami, both Saturday night and in a potential playoff series, since one of the HEAT’s main advantages is their depth and ability to field versatile lineups. Toronto, now, is one of few teams that can do the same – without sacrificing much shooting or spacing. Joe: Entering the All-Star Break, Toronto was ranked 16th in defensive efficiency, as it gave up 106.0 points per 100 possessions. With the acquisitions of Ibaka and P.J. Tucker, things have slightly improved on that end of the floor despite it being a rather small sample size. Even if things don’t drastically change though, both players bring the kind of versatility needed from your frontcourt. Although DeMarre Carroll has had a down year, he provides that same kind of all-around play. When you factor those guys in with Lowry (when he gets healthy) and DeMar DeRozan (who is ranked in the top-ten in both drives and free throw attempts per game), you have a very dangerous Raptors team. Highlights: November 4-HEAT at Raptors Game Notes: The HEAT have won 20 of their last 24 and are a half game behind the Bucks for the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. The Raptors have dropped three of five and are 38-27 on the year. Since January 17, Miami has a top-six offense and a top-three defense. DeMar DeRozan leads Toronto in scoring at 27.4 points per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 104.4 (21) HEAT Defense: 104.0 (5) Raptors Offense: 110.4 (4) Raptors Defense: 105.7 (15)
  20. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT defeated the Charlotte Hornets 108-101 Wednesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Dion Waiters led the way for the HEAT with 24 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  21. I went to first test Thomas community college 2 years university of Virginia 4 years basketball
  22. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon At 1:00 PM EST, I will ask a trivia question for a pair of tickets to Saturday night’s game against the Raptors. Please keep in mind that you must be at least 18-years-old in order to qualify and must reside in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach or Monroe County. Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this calendar month. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.
  23. Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon The Miami HEAT host the Charlotte Hornets Wednesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT fell to the Hornets 91-82 in their last meeting on December 29. Tip-off is set for 7:30 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 7:00 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: How did the HEAT defeat the defending champs on the road? Couper Moorhead: With their bench, as Josh Richardson, Wayne Ellington and Willie Reed all finished plus-11 on a night when single-game plus-minus was fairly representative of how things went. Not that the starters played poorly, they held up reasonably well against LeBron James (plus-14), but this game was decided in the last six minutes of the third quarter when James went to the bench to rest. When James left the game, the Cavs had just made a run and were down, 69-66. By the time James returned, the HEAT had expanded their lead to 89-71. That run was largely powered by the three triples from Wayne Ellington, but those shots wouldn’t have mattered had Miami not been defending. And even with James out, it’s not like it was entirely against Cleveland’s bench as Kyrie Irving was still in the game while the HEAT generally shut off the paint and kept Cleveland shooting contested threes. Should these teams meet in the postseason it will be interesting to see how Erik Spoelstra manages his rotation given how much value Miami’s bench has been carrying over the past two months, especially when you consider that James Johnson and Tyler Johnson didn’t even play in this one. Joe Beguiristain: As has been the case since the HEAT’s 13-game winning streak, hot shooting from beyond the arc and stifling defense reigned supreme on Monday night. In all, Miami shot 16-of-35 from distance (45.7 percent), with Wayne Ellington and Dion Waiters leading the way with five treys apiece. As Coup stated above, Ellington was key in a big run late in the third quarter that extended the HEAT’s lead to 18 entering the fourth. Goran Dragić took it from there, and Waiters hit a dagger three to essentially seal the deal. On the flip side of the ball, Miami fared pretty well against a high-octane Cavaliers offense. While LeBron James and Kyrie Irving each scored 30-plus points, the HEAT made them work for their looks more often than not. As usual, Rodney McGruder, Okaro White and Josh Richardson did a great job in that regard. What’s more, the rest of Cleveland’s roster tallied a combined rating of minus-52 on the night. In other words, the HEAT locked things down. 2: How has Charlotte been playing lately and what may have changed about this matchup this season? Couper: The first part we can answer fairly easily. Since January 1, the Hornets are 9-of-20. Cody Zeller has play in just 12 of those games. The Hornets are +7.3 per 100 with Zeller on the floor. Zeller is now back in the starting lineup. In other words, Charlotte wasn’t playing well without Zeller, now he’s back and they’re winning again. As for how the matchup has changed, it’s more about Miami than anything else. In their two previous wins over the HEAT the Hornets had utilized a similar defensive strategy to the one they employed in the playoffs last season – contain the paint even if you have to sag off the perimeter. But this is a different HEAT roster these days with the team regularly putting four shooters on the floor and letting the threes fly. With so much more strain being put on the defense’s perimeter, it might be a little more difficult for the Hornets to contain Hassan Whiteside in the middle of the floor. Do note, also, that Frank Kaminsky has been injured, Ramon Sessions is also out, and with the team moving away both Roy Hibbert and Spencer Hawes in exchange for Miles Plumlee, currently injured, the Hornets will have a very different bench. Joe: Although the Hornets have won three of their last four contests thanks to the return of Cody Zeller and continued strong play of Kemba Walker, injuries have plagued the team since early January. In fact, Charlotte has gone 3-17 this season with Zeller out of the lineup. Needless to say, the 7-footer is vital to the team’s success on both ends of the floor. In addition to leading the team in net rating (plus-7.3), his ability to run the pick-and-roll effectively with Walker is also important. In fact, Zeller is averaging 1.05 points per possession as the roll man, which is in the 60th percent tile. While that number is down from last season, he has been in and out of the lineup for the past few months. Perhaps he can get into more of a rhythm if he stays healthy for the last 19 games of the season. Other than injuries and a midseason trade for Miles Plumlee, not much has changed for Charlotte in terms of playing style. Under Coach Steve Clifford, they still have a top-ten defense and still attempt nearly 30 threes a night. Like Coup stated above, it’s the HEAT that’s changed the most since the last time these two teams met on December 29. We’ll see how things look this time around with a much-improved Miami squad on a mission to obtain a spot in the Eastern Conference Playoffs. 3: What sort of playoff implications does Wednesday night’s contest have? Couper: While it’s easy to focus on the teams ahead of Miami in the standings as they make their push for the playoffs, in reality this game is just as important as the last two against Cleveland. The Hornets are still just a game and a half back of Miami in the standings – only one back in the loss column – and a win for them would take the series tiebreaker giving them the higher seed in the event of finishing the season tied with the HEAT. So as close as Miami seems to be to the No. 8 seed, just a game and a half out there, there are still a lot of teams in this race that could make things very interesting. Joe: With both teams very close to one another in the standings (the HEAT are 1.5 games ahead of the Hornets), this matchup is pretty important. While it won’t necessarily make or break either team’s season, every win is important in a six-team race for the final three spots. If Miami continues its winning ways, it could potentially grab the sixth seed if other things fall into place. That said, it’s important to not count your chickens before they hatch. As long as the HEAT continue to do what they’ve done since January 17, all should be fine. INJURY UPDATE: James Johnson (lacerated right elbow) is listed as questionable. Tyler Johnson (sore left shoulder), Luke Babbitt (back spasms) and Okaro White (sprained left ankle) are all probable. All four participated in Wednesday morning's shootaround. Highlights: December 29-HEAT at Hornets Game Notes: The HEAT have won three of four and are 30-34. The Hornets have also won three of four and stand at 28-35 on the year. Miami has held opponents to under 50 percent shooting in 53 games this season. Kemba Walker leads Charlotte in points (23.0) and steals (1.2) per game. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 104.3 (23) HEAT Defense: 103.9 (6) Hornets Offense: 105.4 (14) Hornets Defense: 104.8 (8)
  24. Photo Credit: Gregory Shamus The Miami HEAT defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 106-98 Monday night at Quicken Loans Arena. Dion Waiters led the way for the HEAT with 29 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
  25. Photo Credit: David Liam Kyle The Miami HEAT face the Cleveland Cavaliers Monday night at Quicken Loans Arena. The HEAT defeated the Cavaliers 120-92 in their last meeting on March 4. Tip-off is set for 7:00 PM. Television coverage on FOX Sports Sun begins at 6:30 PM. You can also listen to the action live on 790 The Ticket. 1: Is there anything we can take away from Miami’s commanding victory over Cleveland on Saturday? Couper Moorhead: Before the first leg of this two-game Cleveland series, we noted that there was very little we could take away from Miami’s loss to the Cavaliers back in December with half of the HEAT being injured. So, in fairness and with reasonable logic we can say the same about Saturday as Cleveland was missing J.R. Smith and Kevin Love due to injury and LeBron James and Kyrie Irving both sat out the second night of a back-to-back. It was a little surprising that Cleveland was able to score so well early on (first half offensive rating of 109.6) but the evening never felt particularly in question. This was not a representative matchup. Joe Beguiristain: With the Cavaliers’ big three out, it was tough to really glean too much from Saturday night’s matchup. However, it was good to see Miami bounce back after a tough loss to the Magic 24 hours prior. The HEAT corrected nearly all of their mistakes from the previous night and dominated Cleveland from beginning to end. While Goran Dragić regained his form, the sharp play of Josh Richardson was even more encouraging. After missing 19 games with a foot injury, it has taken a little while for Richardson to get his legs under him. But on Saturday night, the 23-year-old looked like his usual self on drives to the bucket and had a fantastic block from behind on Richard Jefferson. If Richardson can continue to get back to how he played last season, that could make all the difference in Miami’s playoff push. 2: With Andrew Bogut expected to make his Cavaliers debut Monday night, what will he add to an already potent roster? Couper: Bogut gives Cleveland something they haven’t had since losing Timofey Mozgov to free agency last summer – a true rim-protecting big man. Tristan Thompson is an excellent small-ball center and Channing Frye is one of the most unique players in the league thanks to his quick-release shooting, but Bogut expands Cleveland’s options for whenever they need a little more size and bulk to deal with a particular matchup – Hassan Whiteside, for instance. If you’ve been following closely this season you’ll remember a number of times when Erik Spoelstra noted that Wayne Ellington’s ability to run around screens for catch-and-shoot plays gives Miami an aspect to its menu it never had before. Consider Bogut the big-man version of that. Joe: Cleveland is already stacked as it is, but Bogut brings something the team lacks at times. Like Coup stated above, Bogut is a very good defensive player who should prove to be a valuable addition to the Cavaliers’ rotation. With him now in the fray, you have three guys at center that bring something completely different to the table. Thompson is an elite offensive rebounder, Frye can stretch the floor and knock down threes all day (he led Cleveland with 21 points on Saturday) and Bogut can protect the rim and bang in the paint with his 7-foot, 260-lb. frame. Depth is key in this league, and the Cavaliers definitely have it. 3: Just when it appeared as though Miami’s three-point shooting was about to hit something of a dip, they come back and hit 18 threes. To what do you ascribe this? Couper: Process. Process. Process. We don’t mean to belabor the point here, but even when the HEAT have had fairly prolific shooting stretches it was never about the makes. This team’s system, with Whiteside rolling to the rim and both Goran Dragic and Dion Waiters drive-and-kicking with aplomb, is built to produce catch-and-shoot three-pointers. As long as that system is running smoothly – it doesn’t always, as in recent losses to Dallas and Orlando – then the opportunities will be there. And when the opportunities will be there, you’re bound to have some extraordinary shooting nights such as the one the HEAT enjoyed on Saturday. Joe: It was all about the HEAT sticking to their identity. When Dragić and Dion Waiters are attacking the paint and collapsing the defense, it makes life so much easier for Miami’s shooters. For proof of that, all you have to do is take a look at how well the team has been shooting from downtown since its 13-game winning streak. In the HEAT’s 22 games since January 17, seven players are shooting over 40 percent from three. Yes, seven. While Dragić and Waiters have assisted on a lot of those, they are also doing their part and hitting 3-pointers at a high percentage too. Highlights: March 4-Cavaliers at HEAT Game Notes: The HEAT have won two of three and are 29-34. The Cavaliers have dropped two of three and enter the contest at 42-19. Five HEAT players are shooting over 43 percent from beyond the arc over the past four games. LeBron James leads Cleveland in points (25.9), assists (8.9) and steals (1.3) per contest. Efficiencies (Rank): HEAT Offense: 104.2 (22) HEAT Defense: 104.0 (6) Cavaliers Offense: 111.1 (3) Cavaliers Defense: 107.3 (22)