GAME PREVIEW: Heat return home to face Jazz

Heat Jazz
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

After a long six-game road-trip that was split up by the All-Star break, the Miami Heat return home to Kaseya Center to face the Utah Jazz Saturday at 5:00 p.m. EST.

The Jazz earned a 117-109 victory over Miami in their first meeting of the season, which came on New Year’s Eve inside Delta Center. Bam Adebayo led the Heat with 28 points, 16 rebounds, three steals and three blocks on 7-of-13 shooting and 14-of-20 from 3-point range. Tyler Herro added 25 points with six boards and six assists.

Miami’s five-game win streak was snapped Thursday against the reigning champion Denver Nuggets 103-97. Its five wins on their latest road trip came over the Milwaukee Bucks, Philadelphia 76ers, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings and Portland Trail Blazers. They have not played a home game since Feb. 11 — a near month-long span — against the Boston Celtics.

The Heat have won seven of their last nine and nine of their last 12, despite being the No. 7 seed in an ultra-tight (middle of the) Eastern Conference.

Over this recent 12-game stretch, it has the second-best defense with the NBA’s best NET Rating (plus-9.3) in non-garbage-time possessions, according to Cleaning The Glass. A big part of that has been the emergence of superstar Jimmy Butler, who’s averaging 22.8 points, 7.4 rebounds, 6.1 assists and 2.3 steals on 54.3 percent shooting, 47.8 percent from 3-point range (albeit on 2.9 attempts) and 75.0 percent from the free-throw line.

The Jazz, meanwhile, have lost seven of their last eight and 10 of their last 13 games, dropping 5.5 games behind the Los Angeles Lakers for the fourth-and-final play-in spot in the West. Utah most recently dropped a hard-fought game to the Orlando Magic 115-117 on Thursday.

Can the Heat keep their hot stretch going? Let us know in the comments!

Injury Report (at the time of this publishing):

Miami Heat:

  • Tyler Herro (foot) — QUESTIONABLE
  • Haywood Highsmith (knee) — QUESTIONABLE
  • Kevin Love (heel) — QUESTIONABLE
  • Caleb Martin (thumb) — QUESTIONABLE
  • Josh Richardson (shoulder) — OUT
  • Dru Smith (knee) — OUT

Utah Jazz

  • Johnny Juzang (G-League) — OUT
  • Walker Kessler (foot) — QUESTIONABLE
  • Micah Potter (G-League) — OUT
  • Jason Preston (G-League) — OUT

Projected Starting 5:

Miami Heat:

  • Terry Rozier, G
  • Duncan Robinson, G
  • Jimmy Butler, F
  • Nikola Jovic, F
  • Bam Adebayo, C

Utah Jazz:

  • Collin Sexton, G
  • Keyonte George, G
  • Lauri Markkanen, F
  • John Collins, F
  • Taylor Hendricks, F

Betting Lines (at the time of this publishing):

  • Spread: Heat -8
  • O/U: 223.5
  • Moneyline: Heat -310, Jazz +250

Check out those lines and more at Fanduel Sportsbook!

Broadcast Info:

  • Tipoff: 5:00 p.m. EST
  • TV: Bally Sports Sun
  • Radio: AM 560 Sports WQAM & The HEAT Radio Network (Jason Jackson)
  • Spanish Radio: WAQI 710 AM & The HEAT Spanish Radio Network (José Pañeda)


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This is a golden opportunity. Dont miss this one, please.


Time for payback for the loss in Utah. Would be nice if Herro and Love can return. Chance for team to make up ground on NY, Philly and Orlando. Only 1.5 games out of 4th.


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