The Miami Heat open the first inaugural 2023-24 in-season tournament Friday against the Washington Wizards.
It will mark the second of a three-game homestand for the Heat inside the Kaseya Center in Miami, Fla. The Heat is in the midst of a four-game losing streak–with losses to the Boston Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Milwaukee Bucks and, most recently, the Brooklyn Nets–after a one-point win over the Detroit Pistons opening night.
The Wizards enter the contest 1-3, including two consecutive losses to the Celtics and Atlanta Hawks. Since Friday marks the first day of the first-ever in-season tournament, this will be both team’s first game in Group B in the Eastern Conference Bracket.
Group B also consists of the Bucks, New York Knicks and Charlotte Hornets; every team will play each other once (two games on the road, two at home) through Nov. 28. The winner of the group will advance to the Final Eight, plus one wild card team from each conference.
Friday also marks the debut of the Heat’s new city edition uniforms, as well as the new in-season tournament court!
The @miamiheat officially release the City Edition jerseys + court and schedule 🔥
— Hot Hot Hoops (@hothothoops) October 31, 2023
The @MiamiHEAT‘s official in-season tournament court.
— Hot Hot Hoops (@hothothoops) October 30, 2023
Miami blew a 16-point first-half lead in Wednesday’s home collapse, getting outscored 34-22 in the final quarter. In fourth quarters this season, the Heat have gotten outscored by 21 points, only trailing the Houston Rockets and Phoenix Suns for the worst fourth quarter point differential leaguewide.
Miami currently possesses the worst record in the Eastern Conference with the 8th-worst NET Rating across the NBA–owning the 5th-worst offense with the 17th-best defense. Conversely, the Wizards own the NBA’s second-worst NET Rating, including the 19th-best offensive rating and the third-worst defensive rating.
Can the Heat snap their four-game skid and get back on track? Only time will tell!
The Efficiency Landscape. What Jumps Out? pic.twitter.com/3bV1QjQBm4
— Kirk Goldsberry (@kirkgoldsberry) November 3, 2023
- Jimmy Butler (knee) — PROBABLE
- Caleb Martin (knee) — OUT
- Corey Kispert (ankle) — OUT
Projected Starting 5:
- Kyle Lowry, G
- Tyler Herro, G
- Jimmy Butler, F
- Kevin Love, F
- Bam Adebayo, C
- Tyus Jones, G
- Jordan Poole, G
- Deni Avdija, F
- Kyle Kuzma, F
- Daniel Gafford, C
Betting Lines (at the time of this publishing):
- Heat -8.5 (-112)
- O/U: 224 (O: -110; U: -110)
- ML: Heat -375, Wizards +300
Lines courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.