It's time to take a look at the week ahead for the Miami Heat. With a softer schedule, and only three games this week, the Heat still have some tests in front of them. Here's a short preview of each game and some FanDuel advice so you can play with SB Nation this week.
Miami @ Brooklyn
DETAILS: Tuesday, 7:30 PM EST
The Nets are about in the same position as the Heat, two games under .500 and searching for answers. They recently opened up trade talk for some of their marquee players, and now they'll host the Heat. Miami is coming off a blowout loss to the Bulls, and the Nets last played on Saturday with a blowout win over the Hornets.
Probably one of the more impressive games of the season was when the Heat won in Brooklyn earlier this year. Now, we will have to see if Mario Chalmers can have as much as an impact against them as a reserve player. Brooklyn has a top 10 defense (barely) and will force Miami into difficult looks. Watch for the matchup of Bosh vs Brooklyn's bigs.
FanDuel Advice: Dwyane Wade should be a solid play here. I think Wade has always bounced back when he has underperformed in the previous game. Brooklyn doesn't offer an defensive stoppers on the wing.
Utah @ Miami
DETAILS: Wednesday, 7:30 PM EST
Just a week removed from winning in Utah behind Wade and Bosh, the Heat will host the Jazz in Miami. Both teams will be flying into Miami on the end of a back-to-back, so there's no real schedule advantage for either side. Miami got a big lead in Utah and then had to win in the clutch. Now, the Heat have to learn to stop the bleeding at home.
Wade and Bosh played well in Utah and I would expect the same from them in this game. Also expect Gordon Hayward to have a good game. I think the biggest difference here will be adding in Chris Andersen against Utah's bigs and probably less time for Justin Hamilton, although he has been serviceable.
FanDuel Advice: Play Gordon Hayward. Miami is prone to giving a hustle and talented guy like him a night on their home court a nice stat line. It's unfortunate, but he will play well. It's hard to imagine what the Heat will do, but I think this is a good Chris Bosh game as well.
Washington @ Miami
DETAILS: Friday, 7:30 PM EST
The Heat got hammered the last time they played the Wizards. Washington will have an extra day off than the Heat as well, not playing since Tuesday. The Heat won the first matchup on opening night. This will be an extremely difficult test for the Heat, and a potentially big loss if they don't focus well.
This is a John Wall game. Miami has to learn how to contain him on the pick and rolls before they do anything else. He is the engine to the team, and if they contain him, everything else is difficult for them. They'll also have to try to contain Marcin Gortat who feeds off of the Heat's bigs.
FanDuel Advice: Gortat is probably going to be one of the better plays for the money because of how the Heat will struggle to contain him. If you can fit him into your roster, it's probably a good move. For the Heat, I can see Dwyane Wade playing well, but not well enough for his price. If you are looking for a good Heat buy, try Mario Chalmers as a second point guard.
Disclosure: Remember, even though FanDuel sponsors this post, all the opinions and insights are my own. FanDuel has given me a little bit of money to start playing already.
Remember, there are lots of ways to play FanDuel. You can play for cash or for free. You can enter pools starting as low as $1. You can play winner take all, a 50/50 league that just requires you finishing in the top half, or specialized custom leagues. All you have to do is pick a team of 9 players with $60k fantasy cash and play against others.
The Best night to play this week: Wednesday December 17 OR Friday, December 19. 20 of the 30 NBA teams will be in action those nights so there's plenty of players to choose from.
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