Game #18: Miami Heat (12-5) vs. Detroit Pistons (4-14)

Fresh off of a 5-game homestand, The Miami Heat have hit the road, leaving Sough Florida and its beautiful weather behind. The climate change is only momentary though, as the Heat will head up to Detroit for a game with the Pistons tonight, then jump on a plane and head right back home afterwards. Following their lethargic win over the Cleveland Cavaliers last night, maybe when that freezing-cold air hits them up in Detroit it will be a nice little wake-up call.

It will definitely be interesting to see which Heat team shows up for this game. Will is be the dominant force that can put up 100 points almost effortlessly or the team we have seen during their last two games that turns the ball over and has a hard time in transition? Detroit has never been the easiest place to play for Miami, so hopefully this quick visit will come with a nice win.

The buzz surrounding this game involves the status of Dwyane Wade. He hasn't played in almost two weeks, spraining his right ankle in a loss at the Nuggets. As it stands right now, Wade has missed 8 games this season, including the last 5. In those 8 games the Heat have only lost once, but its games like this one where they'd really like to have the extra body in the rotation.

You could see during their win over Cleveland last night that they didn't look themselves. Maybe it was just an ‘off' night for the team or maybe they were actually a little tired, but either way I'm sure that a healthy Dwyane Wade playing anywhere from 20-30 minutes would made a huge difference for Miami. As we get closer to game time, we'll have a better idea of whether or not Wade is in the lineup. He did travel with the team up to Detroit so I imagine they'll work him out before the game and see how his ankle responds.

GAME NOTES

  • The Heat are 5-3 on the road. Detroit is 3-6 at home.
  • This game concludes the 6th back-to-back set of the young season for Miami. They are 2-3 in the 2nd game of back-to-backs so far.
  • This is the first of two games that the Heat will play at The Palace, and the first in a three game season series between Miami and Detroit.
  • Last season the Heat went 4-0 during the season against the Pistons.
  • Miami has won 5 straight games at The Palace.
  • Detroit has lost 11 of its last 13 games.
  • For the Heat, Dwyane Wade (ankle) is probably not going to be playing.
  • As for Detroit, Charlie Villanueva (ankle), Ben Gordon (shoulder) and Will Bynum (foot) are all questionable.

Tipoff from the Palace at Auburn Hills is set for 7:30. The game will be broadcast locally on Sun Sports. Lets Go Heat!

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