GAME PREVIEW: Heat with another chance for a statement win at home against the Nuggets

Since returning from injury, Terry Rozier is averaging 18.3 points, 6.3 assists and 4 rebounds on 47.7% shooting/42.4% from 3-point range.

Game story:

In the midst of a three-game losing skid, the Miami Heat’s up and down regular season has continued. Miami is now sporting a 35-29 record and has fell to the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. They are only 1.0 game back of the sixth seed and 1.5 games back of the fifth.

Tonight it won’t get any easier as the Heat will welcome the Denver Nuggets at home for another NBA Finals rematch. The Nuggets are surging, winning 9 of their last 10 games. They are now the second seed in the West at a 45-20 record and third overall in both conferences. Denver is coming off a win against the Toronto Raptors that featured a 35/17/12 monster triple double from Nikola Jokic.

Heat killers Michael Porter Jr. and Aaron Gordon also added 19 a piece, along with a 26 point, 12 assist double double from Jamal Murray.  The Nuggets core is clicking on all cylinders and are looking like the team to beat on route to another Finals run.

Miami on the other hand, is coming off arguably the worst loss of the entire season. They couldn’t close out the bottom seeded Washington Wizards at home, losing in a tight game by 2 points. Duncan Robinson and Jimmy Butler both failed to hit the game winning 3-pointers that they attempted in the closing seconds of the game. Butler led with 23 points and Bam Adebayo bounced back from his slump with a 16/16 double double of his own.

Robinson, getting the starts in place of injured Tyler Herro at shooting guard, had a rough 5/16 shooting night. Herro and Kevin Love are both not ready to return; listed as out again for this pivotal Western Conference contender matchup. It will be the ninth consecutive missed game from Herro.

It’s only fair to be concerned about the health of Herro for Heat fans. This was supposed to be the year where he proves himself and establishes his talent in this core. Unfortunately, injuries have derailed Herro for multiple years in a row now. Being without the services of him in the last Finals against Denver proved that this team does need another playmaker to get over that hump.

The Heat will surely have their hands full against the Nuggets later this evening, as their chemistry, continuity and all-around talent has always been a problem to Miami over the years. The last time the Heat beat the Nuggets at home came on March 19, 2018. That was a game that featured former Heatles James Johnson and Kelly Olynyk dropping 30 points each.

Tonight’s marquee matchup will be nationally televised on ESPN at 7:30 PM EST.

Injury Report (at the time of this publishing):

Miami Heat:

  • Jimmy Butler (illness) — PROBABLE
  • Tyler Herro (foot) — OUT
  • Kevin Love (heel) — OUT
  • Josh Richardson (shoulder surgery) — OUT
  • Jamal Cain (g league) — OUT
  • Alondes Williams (g league) — OUT

Denver Nuggets:

  • Vlatko Cancar (knee) — OUT
  • Hunter Tyson (g league) — OUT
  • Braxton Key (g league) — OUT
  • Jalen Pickett (g league) — OUT

Projected Starting 5 (subject to change):

Miami Heat:

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

Denver Nuggets:

  • Jamal Murray, G
  • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, G
  • Michael Porter Jr, F
  • Aaron Gordon, F
  • Nikola Jokic, C

Betting Lines:

  • Check the current odds out at FanDuel!

Broadcast Info:

  • Tipoff: 7:30 PM EST
  • TV: ESPN & Bally Sports Sun (Eric Reid, John Crotty)
  • 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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Lets go 8th seed! lol
Not looking good lately but not losing hope. Maybe Spo’s running Bam like a Thibs but he’s got his usual minutes shots just not there so in a slump. Do I see a win this game? Yes I do. So…go Heat!
Though will not be able to watch the game lol

Max Pain

The biggest problem on this losing streak imo has been Bam and Duncan.

Bam has been bad offensively, he’s lost confidence in his shot and it’s hurting us because Spo is still going to him in the post on a regular basis.

Duncan has been the opposite, he’s been hurting us defensively. 

He’s on the menu for all opposing teams and his defense has been like filet mignon to them.

Teams are dining heartily on his poor defense.

Those are the 2 players that I feel have been hurting us the most during this losing streak.

heat for life

duncs been like since hes been here,i personally wouldnt play him a minute

Reality Czech

This is from the guy who very recently was raving about Duncan, asking if anybody had seen this level of play coming. Now, you wouldn’t play him one minute. Very typical and not surprising at all..


Jovic starts now, so we are a bit bigger then we use to be.
I do expect a competitive game, but I dont expect too much.


Actually, I think the team needs a more physical combo PF/C type who is able to alternate between the two positions, depending on the situation. Ultimately, I see Jovic more as a SF type than a PF. More fluid/less physical. It will be interesting to see how much he develops over the rest of the regular season and playoffs. As for tonight, Miami doesn’t match up well at all (across the board) against Denver.

P.S. I see some big changes coming this summer if the team doesn’t do well the rest of the season and during the playoffs. We’ll see.


I agree. If we get an early offseason, it would be time for wholesale changes. But, the Heat seldom do what is expected.


Yeah, a lot depends of performance in playoff.

The ultimate question is, if undersized Heat team is fatally flawed by its size or not.

It doesn’t look good against Denver, because their starting lineup is big, but players still extremely skilled and athletic. But Heat already beat teams with the size. So I m not sure.

First or even second round exit (depend of performance) would probably cause not only big trades, but also the fundamental change of direction for the team.

heat for life

back up c


Sure could use a legit two-way power forward about now. Oh well. Maybe next year.


John Collins would be great for us, I think he’s already wearing out his Stay with the jazz.


I agree. Maybe next year.

heat for life

naz reid better than jc


As back-up yes. As starter no. I would take Bobby Portis any day over Reid. I would like to see Jaren Jackson or Domantas Sabonis next to Bam but that ain’t gonna happen.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
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