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Game #31: Charlotte Bobcats (12-18) vs. Miami Heat (16-14)

It's a New Year, and if there was ever a time for the Heat to resolve to play better it's after their most lop-sided loss of the season.  Miami lost by 30 points to the Spurs on Thursday night and now will return home for a very winnable game against Charlotte.  This is the first of four meetings between the Heat and Bobcats this season, with the Heat winning the last three contests. 

I'm expecting a big game from Dwyane Wade, who had a season-high 7 turnovers against the Spurs (and remember, he only played 3 quarters) and has 13 turnovers in his last two games.  Dwyane is having his most inconsistent season of his career, but is still putting up numbers that are around the top of most scoring categories. 

The Heat will kick-off 2010 with three consecutive home games, but they get significantly harder after today's game with Atlanta and Boston coming to the AAA on Monday and Wednesday respectively.  The homecourt is a place the Heat have needed to get things going.  Miami fans can provide a very active and difficult environment for visitors to play in, but the team has to do enough on the floor to get the fans going.

GAME NOTES

  • Charlotte is 1-14 on the road this season.  Only the Nets are worse on the road (1-16).
  • Bobcats center Tyson Chandler is out with a foot injury, so former Dallas Maverick Desagana Diop will get the majority of the minutes at center. 
  • The Heat are 10-8 at home and have a 7-4 mark against teams with losing records. 
  • Will Daequan Cook continue to get more minutes despite having lost his shooting touch?  If there is any bench player Erik Spoelstra would like to get going, I'm certain it's Dae Dae. 
  • The Heat are coming off their worst foul shooting game of the year, hitting just 9-of-16 (56.3%).  They also went just 3-for-12 from 3-point range (25%).

Mid-afternoon tipoff from the AAA is set for 3:30.  Hopefully the Heat will kick-off their 2010 home schedule with a big (and much needed) victory.  Let's Go Heat!!