We hope you had a great week and are continuing the Holidays well! Here, we like to give you a preview of the week of Miami Heat basketball, looking at the schedule and specific match-ups. And as always, as an official partner, we want to give you some FanDuel advice for each game.
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Orlando @ Miami
DETAILS: Monday, 7:30 PM EST
The Heat are looking to end their 7 game home stand with a win over their in-state rival. The Magic (12-21) are just as bad as the Heat in scoring, assisting and rebounding, ranking near the bottom of the league in all those categories. The Magic last played on Saturday, and won against the Charlotte Hornets.
The Magic offer some tough match-up problems for the Heat. Obviously the Heat will have to deal with Nikola Vucevic down low, and he has hurt the Heat before. But they will also have to deal with Victor Oladipo who is getting better and better. Miami beat Orlando earlier this season, but that game was without Wade, and the Heat started Josh McRoberts and Shannon Brown. Obviously, things have changed since then.
FanDuel Advice: Usually I would say play Nikola Vucevic here, but Miami has been playing a steady hand of Chris Andersen and Hassan Whiteside, and they haven't allowed bigs to tear the team up as past has shown. Dwyane Wade has traditionally had good games against the Magic, he should be a good play here.
Miami @ Indiana
DETAILS: Wednesday, 3:00 PM EST
The Heat have always struggled in Indiana, even when the Pacers weren't good. Now, Indiana has gotten healthy all around the roster except for Paul George (however, he's been seen warming up before games taking jumpers and moving well). David West, Roy Hibbert, and George Hill are all back and healthy and will give the Heat a good test for their first road game in 2 weeks. The Pacers host the Bulls on Monday night.
Indiana beat the Heat in an embarrassing loss earlier this season in Miami. For Miami to win this, they'll need Chris Bosh and a very efficient and productive Dwyane Wade. Indiana, although with a bad record, still has all the tools to create nightmares for the Heat. They play the type of game that Miami struggles with, and they know them.
FanDuel Advice: This is probably going to be a pretty small line going in. Neither of these teams are offensive juggernauts, so pick wisely from this game as the stats across the board will be slim. If anyone, you have to wonder if this is a game that Roy Hibbert comes out and plays well. But I could also see Luol Deng having a really good game.
Miami @ Houston
DETAILS: Saturday, 8:00 PM EST
The Rockets just signed Josh Smith, beating out the Heat in the race. Now, Miami will visit the Rockets over the weekend in what sure will be a tough game. Houston beat the Heat in Miami earlier this year and they are still doing well. The Heat will be getting Houston on the back side of a back-to-back while Miami will have two days rest in Houston.
This is a game that the Heat will need to get off to a good start in if they want it to be a game. They'll need to contain James Harden earlier and do a better job on Dwight Howard than they did last time. Chris Andersen will need to be on his game for this one. Watch for Bosh to have a good offensive game if he is playing by this time.
FanDuel Advice: Dwight Howard has to be a good play here just because of the match-up. Even with Andersen and Whiteside, Howard will find his way to the free throw line. At home, I can see Dwight having a 20-15 night.
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.
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The Best night to play this week: Friday, January 2. 22 of the 30 NBA teams will be in action those nights so there's plenty of players to choose from.
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