If there was a game that signified how the Heat needed to play in order to be successful the rest of the regular season and playoffs, then last night’s win over Detroit was a prime example. The Heat only trailed in the first two minutes en route to a 107-89 victory in the Triple A. Miami did not move up any places in the standings, but did get a slight cushion over the Hornets, who lost to Toronto.
Miami played a very good game on both ends on the floor. They moved the ball with precision for easy buckets on offense, and defensively, they shut down the Pistons’ pick & roll, which severely limited Andre Drummond. The offensive surge started with Dragic attacking the paint almost every play, which lead to his game-high 22 points. Dwyane wade had 16 and Luol Deng had 12 points and 8 rebounds. Josh Richardson had 16 points and 4 threes, while Hassan Whiteside had yet another double-double with 14 points, 12 rebounds, and 4 blocks. Here is how the 3 keys went.
- Give Wade the ball: He had only 16 points, but they did not need him much in the second half. He attacked the bucket early and his jump shot was falling as well. A great win for Miami in which Wade did not need to log a lot of minutes.
- Whiteside vs. Drummond: I would say that they battled to a near stalemate, with Whiteside having the edge with his 4 blocks. His length did bother Drummond and was able to get a hand on one of his layup attempts. Also a good thing that Whiteside was not needed for a lot of minutes.
- Make them play defense: I think Detroit forgot to do that, because they looked lost on defense at some points. Reggie Jackson lost Josh Richardson at least twice, in which Richardson got open from beyond the arc (not a good thing to let happen).
A great overall performance from the Heat, which bodes well for them heading in to their last five games. They will probably need to win four of their last five (although all five would be great) in order to ensure a third spot. They are more than capable of doing so.