The anticipated rematch between lottery picks Justise Winslow and Stanley Johnson never materialized, but the Miami Heat completed a perfect 5-0 record in the Orlando Summer League tournament with a blowout 91-68 victory against the Detroit Pistons on Friday.
Second round pick Josh Richardson took advantage with several teammates resting and led all players with 18 points on 7-16 shooting along with two assists and two rebounds in 29 minutes. Zoran Dragic again impressed with his all-around game and finished with 16 points (3-6 in 3-pointers), six rebounds, two assists and two steals. Tyler Kalinoski showed his range with 15 points on 5-11 field goal attempts and 2-4 shooting from beyond the arc. Juwan Howard Jr. enjoyed extended minutes off the bench to quickly score 10 points while dishing out three assists.
Winslow ended up sitting this one out, considering the Heat will immediately fly out to Las Vegas to begin play the following day. Shabazz Napier also did not play and Henry Walker continues to be out with an ankle injury. Tyler Johnson is in Miami recuperating from a fractured jaw suffered in their last game and Willie Reed is Brooklyn bound after signing with the Nets on Thursday.
The Heat beat the Pistons for a second time in this tournament and it was never really close, with a 9-0 run to open up a 26-14 lead in second quarter and the team never looking back with an aggressive style of play.
Joshua Smith (eight points, seven rebounds) did most of his damage off the bench in the second quarter and played well. He quickly scored two baskets inside the paint, taking advantage of his weight difference against the smaller defenders, then took a charge on the other end, and then capped it off with a nice play to assist Rodney McGruder for another basket as Heat increased their lead to double-digits.
Richardson then knocked down back-to-back midrange jumpers to open up a 34-17 lead in the second quarter as part of an extended 22-4 run for a 39-19 lead just before halftime.
Back-to-back threes by Richardson and Dragic keep the Heat lead robust in the third quarter as they continued to out-work the Pistons on both ends, always swinging the ball around for the open man and attacking the paint whenever there was an opening.
Justin Harper of the Pistons hit three jumpers in a row to cut the Heat lead down to 12 but Dragic out-hustled Stanley Johnson (10 points) to grab an offensive rebound for the easy putback lay-up. Howard knocked down a three-pointer to end the third quarter to restore the Heat's lead at 20.
Howard then began the final quarter with a nice drive against Johnson for the score and Seth Tuttle tapped in a Richardson driving layup miss to give the Heat their biggest lead with a 24-point advantage and the coast was clear for the tournament sweep.
Miami missed out on a chance to win the title in Orlando only because they didn't win enough quarters throughout their first four games.
They begin play in Las Vegas on Saturday and Hot Hot Hoops will be there to provide exclusive coverage for a portion of the tournament.