The HEAT pay a visit to New Orleans to play the Pelicans tonight at 8PM. It's the second and final meeting between the two this season. Last night, Miami began and ended a one-game homestand, defeating the Memphis Grizzlies 91-86. After tonight's matchup, they'll begin and end another one-game homestand, hosting the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday. The Pelicans defeated the Atlanta Hawks last night, 111-105. Tonight they're opening a four game homestand. They'll host the Brooklyn Nets on Monday, the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday, and the Utah Jazz on Friday.
The last time Miami played New Orleans, the 26-8 HEAT were hosting the 15-17 Pelicans on January 7th. LeBron James led the HEAT with 32 points on 13-of-22 shooting with five assists and two steals, while cohort Dwyane Wade shot nine-for-15 on his way to 22 points, eight rebounds and eight helpers in a 107-88 HEAT victory. Chris Andersen pitched in 15 points and seven boards for the win. Anthony Davis led the Pelicans with 22 points, 12 rebounds, three steals and two blocks. * Full Recap * Box Score * Video Highlights
Miami coach Erik Spoelstra spoke about Miami getting hot after halftime:
I was encouraged by the second half. That's a very talented team (the Pelicans). In the first half, we couldn't quite figure it out defensively. They were scoring, moving us around and definitely had us in some compromising positions.
The Bird Writes has more on the Pelicans.
In Miami's last game, the HEAT played from behind most of the game before regrouping and overcoming a seven-point deficit with four minutes remaining to defeat the Memphis Grizzlies 91-86. Ray Allen led Miami with 18 points, four rebounds and four assists, and LeBron James scored 15 points with seven assists and six rebounds. Dwyane Wade and Mario Chalmers each pitched in with 14, while Chris Bosh had 11. Zach Randolph had a solid night for the Grizzlies, scoring a game high 25 points with a game high 14 rebounds and four helpers. * Full Recap * Box Score * Video Highlights
Spo talked about Memphis' size later:
When you play against a big team like this that can defend well, you have to really work the game. You have to be able to manage all the emotions that go on during the course of the game. ... We got down 10 in the third quarter and we just had to keep grinding.
For Grizzlies news, go to Grizzly Bear Blues.
New Orleans claimed a 111-105 victory last night over the Atlanta Hawks. Anthony Davis had 34 points and 11 rebounds, Tyreke Evans had 21 points with four steals and four assists, and Brian Roberts had 16 with five boards. Jeff Teague had 26 points and eight assists for the Hawks. * Full Recap * Box Score * Video Highlights
Pelican's coach Monty Williams spoke after the game about Luke Babbitt, who entered the game late and finished with 11 points in 12 minutes:
I'm not sure if the Hawks expected to see a stretch [power forward] like Luke . . . props to him for being able to come right in the game and cold and being able to knock down the shot.
If the Hawks are your second favorite team, check out Peachtree Hoops.
Game Time: 8PM
Season Series: Miami leads 1-0 with their 107-88 win in January.
All-Time Series: Miami has a chance to get to .500 all-time against the Pelican/Hornet franchise. They currently have a 37-38 record.
This Day in Heatstory
Miami is 8-6 on March 22nd's since 1989.
1992 - HEAT 107, Nets 100
1995 - HEAT 98, Hawks 84
1998 - HEAT 112, Trail Blazers 80
2009 - HEAT 101, Pistons 96
2010 - HEAT 99, Nets 89
2013 - HEAT 103, Pistons 89
New Orleans Pelicans
The court should be pretty level from a fatigue standpoint with each team playing in the second half of a back to back, and each team having taken a flight since their respective contests. Miami has it over the Pelicans all day in the talent department, but do not have a solid answer for the NBA's leading shot blocker Anthony Davis. Miami may be able to slow him down by playing Chris Andersen and Greg Oden against him when able.
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