HHH GameTime Preview: Heat Vs Rockets

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

A night after a truly MVP performance by LeBron James, the HEAT visit Houston to try and win their ninth game in a row.

Tonight, the HEAT travel to Houston to face the Rockets in the Toyota Center at 8PM. It's the first game this season between the two, with the rematch tipping off in Miami on March 16th. Miami just finished a four game homestand at 4-0, and have won their last eight overall. Tonight starts off a three game roadtrip with matchups to follow in San Antonio on Thursday and against the Chicago Bulls on Sunday. The Rockets defeated the Detroit Pistons 118-110 on Saturday, and finish off their short homestand tonight. They'll take to the road afterward for a game against the Orlando Magic tomorrow.

The last time Miami faced Houston was February 6th, 2013. Miami earned a 114-108 victory as LeBron James scored 32, Dwyane Wade put up 31 with eight assists and four steals, and Udonis Haslem pitched in nine points and 13 rebounds. * Box Score * Full Recap

SokmIN NBA 2 6 13 Houston Rockets Vs Miami Heat Highlights (via SokMin Woo)

After the game, coach Erik Spoelstra spoke about Houston's offense:

We held them to 108 [points]. That team can score. Even when we had an opportunity in the second half to get a double-digit lead, they came right back. That's what they do.

You can find more on the Rockets at The Dream Shake.

Last night, we witnessed LeBron James on fire at home against the visiting Charlotte Bobcats. He hit his first eight three point attempts and scored nearly half of Miami's points by putting up a personal best and franchise record 61 on 22-of-33 shooting from the field. Chris Bosh scored 15 with seven boards as Miami cruised 124-107. For Charlotte, Al Jefferson wasn't half bad either, scoring 38 points with 19 rebounds. * Full Recap

LeBron James' 61 Points vs Charlotte Bobcats - Heat Record + Career High (03.03.2014) (via NBA Highlights)

After playing most of the fourth quarter, the media caught up with King James:

I think what helped was we couldn't get no stops in the fourth quarter. That allowed me to stay in the game. ... I wanted to try to close it out and I was happy I was able to make a few plays to help us win the game.

Rufus on Fire has all of your Charlotte Bobcats news.

In Houston's last matchup, Terrence Jones scored 22 points with 10 rebounds to lead six Rockets in double figures as they tamed the Detroit Pistons, 118-110. James Harden scored 20 with 12 dimes. Rodney Stuckey had a game high 23 for Detroit, who also had six players finish in double figures. * Box Score * Full Recap

Detroit Pistons vs Houston Rockets | Full Game Highlights | March 01, 2014 | NBA 2013-2014 Season (via NBACalifornia)

After the game, Dwight Howard spoke about how it's important to never underestimate your opponent:

We've got to always attack no matter what quarter it is, no matter what team it is. We've got to always be in attack mode.

Detroit Bad Boys will give you all of the Pistons news that you can stand to read about.

GameTime: 8PM ET

Season Series: First of two contests, rematch on March 16th.

All-Time Series: Miami owns a slight 27-25 edge in head-to-head matchups with Houston.

Standings

Miami HEAT: 43-14, .754, on pace for a 62-20 season. First in the Southeast Division, Second in the Eastern Conference, Second in the NBA. Last Five: W-W-W-W-W. Playoff Odds: 100%.

Houston Rockets: 40-19, .678, on pace for a 56-26 season. Second in the Southwest Division, Fifth in the Western Conference, Seventh in the NBA. Last Five: L-W-W-L-W. Playoff Odds: 99.95%.

Starting Lineups

Miami HEAT

PG - Mario Chalmers

PF - Shane Battier

C - Chris Bosh

SF - LeBron James

SG - Dwyane Wade

Houston Rockets

PG - Patrick Beverley

PF - Terrence Jones

C - Dwight Howard

SF - Chandler Parsons

SG - James Harden

Make sure to keep it tuned in at Hot Hot Hoops for all of the latest HEAT news. Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and check back here later for the Game Thread, 30 minutes before tipoff.

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