Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Danny

Nets at HEAT Official Game Thread and Preview

Recommended Posts

670_heatnetspre_121201.jpg

(Photo Credit: Jesse Garrabrant)

The Miami HEAT host the Brooklyn Nets Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Both teams enter on five game winning streaks. Tip off is set for 7:30 PM; coverage starts at 7 PM on Sun Sports.

1.The Nets currently have the seventh best offense in the NBA. In their first meeting against the HEAT, they weren’t able to get anything going. Does that change tonight?

Couper Moorhead: I kept waiting for the Deron Williams drive-and-kick game to get going in that first matchup, but it never quite materialized. The Nets still struggle with their floor spacing at times – a big reason why Jerry Stackhouse has been getting late-game minutes, as he can shoot the corner three – and they haven’t always made the second or third pass that offenses need to beat Miami’s defensive rotations. A few weeks more of playing together should help, though, and even without Brook Lopez, fewer post-ups for him might prove to be beneficial against a defense that feasts on one-on-one play.

Danny Martinez: I doubt the HEAT hold the Nets to an offensive efficiency of 78.1 again. The Nets have nowhere to go but up, and I expect them to. However, I don’t think we’ll see them put up a big number on the HEAT. With Brook Lopez out, the Nets are without their lone above-average offensive big man. The Nets should be more one dimensional, though I guess Andray Blatche or Kris Humphries might surprise us.

2.Gerald Wallace missed the first game against the HEAT. What does his presence mean for the Nets’ defense?

Couper: Having someone capable of cutting off-the-ball should help the Nets a ton, especially considering Miami’s recent defensive breakdowns. Wallace isn’t going to spread the floor but I wouldn’t be surprised if he snuck along the baseline for a few easy buckets. And then there’s that whole thing about Brooklyn having a good defender for LeBron James, which is nice, but it still doesn’t solve the issue of how they play James in the pick-and-roll (which should be better without Lopez).

Danny: Few players possess the combination of size and athleticism that Gerald Wallace does. He should help the Nets immensely with his ability to cover LeBron James. Without Wallace, the Nets were forced to play small and James picked them apart in his 30 minutes of action. Between Wallace and Joe Johnson, the Nets will now have to perimeter defenders to check HEAT wing players. The Nets are 6-1 in games Wallace plays. That isn’t a coincidence.

3.The Nets are 9-2 in their last 11 games, with wins against the Celtics, Knicks and Clippers. Are they now in the championship contender discussion?

Couper: If they can get their defensive efficiency into the Top 10 and keep it there for most of the season, then we can have that conversation.

Danny: Not yet, but we’re getting there. The Nets have the eighth best net efficiency rating in the NBA, but they’ve played the 11th easiest schedule in the NBA. If the Nets are in this position in late January, when the schedules should be more balanced, then they’ll be in the discussion. I’ll label them, “wait and see.”

4.The HEAT have eked out three straight home games, relying on late-game heroics to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Do you see these games as positives or negatives for the HEAT?

Couper: In the long run, they are positives. It’s frustrating for fans to watch games where the HEAT should technically be leading by double-digits at a minimum, but gaining the confidence they are now in absolutely thrashing teams in the clutch is going to pay dividends. That the defense that been otherworldly in the last five minutes of close games should tell you all you need to know about the defense right now. It’s not consistent, but it is consistently great when there is a real threat of losing – it’s not as if the HEAT’s defense has an exposed weakness, as some have suggested.

Danny: It’s November. The HEAT aren’t playing perfect basketball, but they’re winning games. They have the fourth best efficiency differential while playing the second hardest schedule in the league, so it’s not like we should be sounding any alarms. These close games have given the HEAT a chance to work in different late-game sets and lineups. I think that’s a positive going forward. Also, there is a benefit to having things to work on. This recent home stretch should give Coach Spoelstra plenty to work on.

5.If the game is close at the end, will the Nets be the first team to stick to Ray Allen?

Couper: Somebody has to, don’t they? It’s getting pretty incredible how people keep forgetting where Allen is on the floor. Then again, the more likely scenario is they start keying in on Allen too much, Spoelstra uses him as a decoy and James gets an open lane to the rim. During the regular season, at least, teams can have the tendency to compensate in extremes from game-to-game.

Danny: Someone eventually has to, right? Three teams have now fallen victim to Ray Allen daggers late in the fourth quarter. Defenders keep drifting off Allen as he shuffles along the perimeter and LeBron keeps feeding him. Whether it’s CJ Watson, Joe Johnson, Deron Williams or Keith Bogans on Allen late in the game, you know Nets coach, Avery Johnson, will be telling them to stick with number 34.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Infernoian Preview

Today we've got Wuchuhurd, Scar and hopefully jafet6 previewing tonight's matchup.

1.The Nets currently have the seventh best offense in the NBA. In their first meeting against the HEAT, they weren’t able to get anything going. Does that change tonight?

Wuchuhurd: Hard to get a read on this Miami team right now but if I had to guess, this will be another high scoring struggle. Lopez' absence could be a blessing in disguise as it makes them faster and become more run-oriented. Brooklyn is also on a 5 game winning streak and should be coming to Miami with a bit more confidence and looking to make a statement. They know they are going to have to put up a bunch of points to pull off a victory.

2.Gerald Wallace missed the first game against the HEAT. What does his presence mean for the Nets’ defense?

Wuchuhurd: Gerald's presence gives them a versatile defender who can check LeBron and Bosh if needed. But he also makes the team faster on both ends and that will help them match Miami's pace and smaller lineup. Anytime you are lined up against Gerald Wallace, you better bring a hard hat because its going to get physical and he will make you work for every inch on the floor.

3.The Nets are 9-2 in their last 11 games, with wins against the Celtics, Knicks and Clippers. Are they now in the championship contender discussion?

Scar: Sure. But then again, you can make that argument for just about any team with a winning record.

4.The HEAT have eked out three straight home games, relying on late-game heroics to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Do you see these games as positives or negatives for the HEAT?

Scar: Positive. The Heat had issues in years past with these close game situations. James, and Wade are excellent scorers, but their long ball left a lot to be desired. With Allen in Miami, nowadays we have someone who thrives in these last second, game winning opportunities. I mean if teams are going to continue to keep Allen open as LeBron or Wade drives to the basket, he is going to continue killing them softly, so to speak.

Backcourt Breakdown by Wuchuhurd

With Lopez out, their is more pressure for Brooklyn's backcourt to produce than their is for Miami's. Still Brooklyn's all star backcourt is capable of carrying the load and getting hot from deep which seems to be the trend from Miami's opponents lately. With that I expect JJ and Deron to get into the scoring early and often. Wade enjoyed a very nice and efficient scoring outing in the last meeting. It's important he gets off to a fast start to put Nets rotation in a bind and decide if they want to bring out Watson or Bogans for defensive purposes. Rio obviously has his hands full matched up against Deron. Getting Rio off to a fast start would also be great to buy time for Ray who otherwise would have trouble defensively against their backcourt. Ray picked up 5 fouls in just 26 minutes of play during the last meeting. Bottomline is that as long as the Heats backcourt stays toe to toe with the Nets, they should be in good shape seeing that Miami's frontcourt should have it easy against a Brookless lineup.

Frontcourt Breakdown by Scar

The match up to look for will be Crash vs the King. Wallace is a good enough player that he will pester LeBron whenever he is on the court. For the Nets, Wallace will provide the best defense against LeBron. That being said, LeBron has the obvious advantage in this match up. Wallace has been playing very well ever since he came back from his injury issue, but LeBron is one of those players that will annoy him on both ends of the court.

Who knows who will start at the PF spot for Miami going forward until Shane Battier comes back. It looks like Rashard Lewis will get the starting nod for the time being. Kris Humphries is a banger in the low post area, Lewis can bang with him, but Humphries is a physical presence that will steal a rebound or two away from him. What Lewis does have to his advantage is his long frame and the rejuvenation of his long ball. Lewis currently sits as a very deadly long range assassin and that should keep Humphries out on the perimeter more then he wants.

First Tim Duncan sits out a game and now Brook Lopez is missing a game due to a legitimate injury. Chris Bosh should play another very efficient game given the fact that the Nets will probably play small ball right along with the champs. Bosh currently sits as the highest scoring center in the NBA. The Nets will try placing Andray Blatche, Reggie Evans or maybe even Humphries on Bosh to try and quiet his hot start to the season. Bosh did have one of his poorer outings of the season against the Nets in their first meeting, except a bounce back game for him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm really hoping D.WADE asserts himself this game without forcing the issue.He has to get into a rhythm without overdoing it,let the game just come to him.It should be a competitive game,can't wait...TEAM HEAT since '88!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is not the same Nets squad we routed early in the season, and this will be a completely different game. They have great size at every position. Bogans is an ugly mfer. The last three sentences are all facts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going to this game! Banane21.gifThis will be my first time of the big 3 era. Hopefully I'll see some LeBron and Wade fast break alley oops.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder will the WARDEN see any significant minutes tonight?SPO really need to start integrating JA into the rotation,it could pay dividends in the long run...TEAM HEAT since '88!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No Lopez, so they don't have all that much size.

Blatche is their next biggest person.

Now we don't have to worry about lopez's 4 rebounds

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But if he played Miami, he would end up with 15. That is how it always has worked this year :D

he got 8 points, 7 rebounds last time he played us.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You get what I'm saying though. I saw a stat that concerned me, in the 123 previous minutes Matt Bonner played before us he got 8 rebounds, and he got 10 rebounds in the 30 minutes he played against us.

that proves it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Deron and Lopez create some mismatches. Joe Johnson can take care of Wade without issue. I think this could be a Miami Loss if Nets play their cards right. Should be a fun game...it'll be close no doubt, could go either way. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Deron and Lopez create some mismatches. Joe Johnson can take care of Wade without issue. I think this could be a Miami Loss if Nets play their cards right. Should be a fun game...it'll be close no doubt, could go either way. :D

Lopez is out genius

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Similar Content

    • By Joe B.

      Photo Credit: Kent Smith
      The Miami HEAT face the Atlanta Hawks Monday night at Philips Arena. The HEAT defeated the Hawks 104-93 in their last meeting on Oct. 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.
      Highlights:
      Oct. 23 – Hawks at HEAT
      Feb. 24 – HEAT at Hawks
      Game Notes:
      The HEAT have won four of five and are 15-14. The Hawks have lost four straight and enter the contest at 6-23. Hassan Whiteside (left knee bone bruise) and James Johnson (right ankle bursitis) did not travel with the team to Atlanta. Dennis Schröder leads Atlanta in points (19.7) and assists (6.7) per contest.  
      Efficiencies (Rank):
      HEAT Offense: 102.3 (24) HEAT Defense: 104.0 (11) Hawks Offense: 103.2 (19) Hawks Defense: 108.4 (28)
    • By Joe B.

      Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon
      The Miami HEAT defeated the Los Angeles Clippers 90-85 Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Josh Richardson led the way for the HEAT with a career-high 28 points. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
    • By Joe B.

      Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon
      The Miami HEAT host the Los Angeles Clippers Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Get your tickets now! The HEAT defeated the Clippers 104-101 in their last meeting on Nov. 5. 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 did you like most about Miami’s win in Charlotte?
      Couper Moorhead: This felt like a formulaic win for the HEAT, which is a good thing. They defended consistently throughout the game, they hit their threes with Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington shooting 9-of-14 from deep and, in putting both those aspects together, outscored the other team’s bench. And then the lead they build from that was enough to absorb a late run by the best player on the opposing team. That’s how this Miami team can win consistently.
      But Johnson and Ellington shooting like this, and by this we mean they’ve been both been hot for about 10 days now, brings up another point that’s always healthy to make. At some point, they will both cool off. If they stay cool long enough, people will begin to wonder what is going on with their jumpers (as happened with Johnson early this season). That’s not how the narrative should operate. Both are proven shooters, and shooters can be streaky – or perhaps a better word is cyclical. For every time you are scorching hot, you’ll have other games when you aren’t shooting as well. That’s how percentages balance themselves out. Enjoy the hot streak while it happens, just treat it as much like an outlier as the valleys.
      Joe Beguiristain: I liked that the HEAT dominated on both ends of the floor for pretty much the entire contest, as seven Miami players scored in double-figures and the Hornets shot just 41 percent on the night. As Coup mentioned above, Wayne Ellington and Tyler Johnson led the way, but James Johnson and Goran Dragić also had strong performances.
      JJ picked up steam in the second quarter with aggressive attacks to the basket and some nice feeds to his teammates, while Dragić got into the paint often and led the team with seven assists.
      Another encouraging thing about Friday night was how the HEAT responded to adversity. Even though Kemba Walker went off in the fourth, Dion Waiters hit an important bucket with 1:09 left and Miami got enough stops down the stretch.
      As Erik Spoelstra said after the game, “You have to be prepared to play a full 48 minutes. I like our guys having to go through all that stress and anxiety and have to execute under duress…in context of a close game.”

      2: What we did learn from the last game with the Clippers and what has changed since then?
      Couper: The most important changes are health related, as Patrick Beverley underwent knee surgery and is out for the season while Blake Griffin suffered a knee injury and was declared out for up to two months in late November. With Danilo Gallinari in and out of the lineup and now Austin Rivers out Friday night with a concussion, there’s been a struggle for consistency despite remaining in the Top 15 offensively (though that ranking figures to drop the more time Griffin misses).
      As for the lesson of that game, it was one Miami has learned a couple times this season which is that no matter how good your offense is early on and how much you’re able to stretch a lead, it’s your defense in the second half that holds off the opponent. The HEAT led by as much as 25 points in the second half but the Clippers stormed back in the final period, scoring 35. The HEAT may have gone cold down the stretch, but if you don’t allow an explosive scoring period the game doesn’t come down to a Griffin jumper missing the target in the final seconds.
      Joe: It’s hard to glean too much from that last game in terms of individual performances since Blake Griffin, Patrick Beverley, Austin Rivers and Hassan Whiteside will all be out this time around. That said, the HEAT should be wary of Lou Williams, who was the catalyst in the Clippers’ comeback bid.
      Since then, Williams has actually played even better.  With so many guys hurt, the 31-year-old vet has seen a major uptick in minutes over the past month or so. In fact, Williams has averaged 23.3 points, 5.7 assists and 1.2 steals in 35.1 minutes per game over his last 17 outings.
      We also should mention Miloš Teodosić, who missed that last matchup in early November. Teodosić is currently on a minutes restriction since he’s easing his way back from a plantar fascia injury, but he’s a fantastic passer who makes LA’s offense run much smoother. 
      3: Without Blake Griffin, who will Miami have to focus on stopping defensively?
      Couper: While it depends on whether or not Gallinari or Rivers are available to play, the man who can do a ton of damage (and is using 28 percent of the team’s offensive possessions with Blake out) is Lou Williams. While he may not be an All-Star, Williams has some of the elite skills of one as he’s capable of shooting and making off the dribble just about anywhere on the floor and doubles as one of the best in the league at getting to the free-throw line. Given that Miami’s recent slate of games has included Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum and Kemba Walker, they’ll be practiced at using the same coverage (should they choose to do so) against Williams and force him to give the ball up. Because if you give him space, he’s going to shoot. After that, do your best not to foul. Easier said than done.
      Joe: Like I stated in my previous response, Williams really is the guy Miami has to watch out for. Although he’s not as proficient in the pick-and-roll as Damian Lillard or Kemba Walker, he can still hit some really tough shots like both of those guys. A perfect example of that came on Dec.9 when he hit a well-contested three with 1.2 seconds left to give the Clippers a narrow victory over the Wizards.
      Since Williams is one of the only offensive threats on LA thanks to all the injuries (especially if Danilo Gallinari can’t play), it’ll behoove the HEAT to play up on him and make nothing come easy. As long as Miami sticks to its principles and minimizes its mistakes, all should be fine.

       
      Highlights:
      Nov. 5 – HEAT at Clippers
      Jan. 8 – HEAT at Clippers
      Game Notes:
      The HEAT have won three of four and are 14-14. The Clippers have also won three of four, but they enter the contest at 11-16. Erik Spoelstra is one win away from breaking Pat Riley’s record for most regular season wins in franchise history. DeAndre Jordan leads Los Angeles in rebounds (14.7) and blocks (1.1) per game.  
      Efficiencies (Rank):
      HEAT Offense: 102.5 (23) HEAT Defense: 104.4 (13) Clippers Offense: 105.0 (15) Clippers Defense: 106.9 (20)
    • By Joe B.

      Photo Credit: Kent Smith
      The Miami HEAT defeated the Charlotte Hornets 104-98 Friday night at Spectrum Center. Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington led the way for the HEAT with 16 points apiece. Five other players scored in double-figures for Miami. Click here for the full recap on HEAT.com.
    • By Joe B.

      Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon
      At approximately 2:00 PM, I will be conducting trivia for two pairs of tickets to tomorrow night’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers (one question per pair). The same person can’t win both pairs. 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, Collier, or Monroe County.
      Also, you are ineligible if you've already won tickets this season. Please only play/answer if you can attend and qualify based on these rules.