Tonight at 6PM, the Miami Heat welcome the Atlanta Hawks to the AmericanAirlines Arena for a one-game homestand. This is the third of four games between the Southeast Division rivals this season, with each winning once on the other's court so far. The Hawks defeated the Heat in Miami, 98-92 on November 3rd, and the Heat won a 100-88 decision over the Hawks in Atlanta on December 14th. The series will conclude in Atlanta on February 19th.
Miami's just concluded five-game roadtrip started out with consecutive losses, to the Washington Wizards 106-87 on January 20th and 91-79 to the Toronto Raptors last Friday. They've won three straight since then, 89-84 over the Chicago Bulls on Monday, 102-98 over the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday, and 107-103 over the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday night. After tonight's game, they'll head out for another three games, versus the Houston Rockets on Tuesday, the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday, and the Charlotte Hornets on Friday.
Atlanta is finishing up a quickie two-game road trip. They started it out on Thursday night with a 111-92 loss to the Indiana Pacers. They'll return home to play the Mavericks tomorrow night.
The last time Miami and Atlanta got together was December 14th in Phillips Arena in Atlanta. The 13-9 Heat defeated the 14-11 Hawks, 100-88 thanks in most part to Chris Bosh's 24 point, 10 rebound and three assist performance and Gerald Green's 20 points off the bench. Luol Deng had 18 points, nine boards, and four helpers, and Hassan Whiteside had eight points, 13 rebounds and three blocks. Kent Bazemore led the Hawks with 28 points and five rebounds, and Paul Millsap had 18 with nine, respectively.
We've got to bring this every game. When the season ends, we want to be competing for a world championship. - Green
For more on Atlanta, go to Peachtree Hoops.
Miami's last time out would see the Heat hold off the Bucks 107-103 on Friday night. Dwyane Wade scored 24 with seven assists, Chris Bosh had 20 with six rebounds and five assists, Luol Deng scored 16 with seven boards, and Amar'e Stoudemire scored a dozen with eight rebounds in 23 minutes. Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 28 points, six assists, four rebounds, three steals, and two blocks.
We've shown some grit and some toughness to win some tough games on the road. - Heat coach Erik Spoelstra
Brew Hoop has the goods on the Bucks.
Atlanta got their lunch money taken by them on Thursday night against the Pacers by a 111-92 final. The game was pretty close throughout, with the Pacers actually winning 90-88 before closing the game on the short side of a 23-2 run. Jeff Teague led the Hawks in defeat with 20 points and five assists, Al Horford had 14 and Thad Sefolosha had 13. Monta Ellis led Indiana with 25 points, six assists, five assists and five steals, while Myles Turner scored 20 with six boards.
Obviously, we hit a wall at the four-minute mark or whatever it was. I think it was 91-90 and they got to free throw line twice in a row and we were never really able to regain our footing. - Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer
For more news on the Pacers, check out Indy Cornrows.
All-Time Head to Head: Miami is just 42-60 against the Pacers all-time, their fifth worst mark against anyone.
Miami Heat: 26-21, .553, on pace for 45-37. Second in the Southeast Division, sixth in the Eastern Conference, 11th in the NBA. Last Five: L-L-W-W-W. Playoff Odds: 74.9%
Atlanta Hawks: 27-21, 563, on pace for 46-36. First in the Southeast Division, tied for fourth in the Eastern Conference, tied for ninth in the NBA. Last Five: L-L-W-L-L. Playoff Odds: 92.2%
Common Thread: Tim Hardaway Jr. never played for the Heat, but his dad sure did. Junior has appeared in 13 games in January for the Hawks, averaging four points in 15 minutes per game.
It's not really close yet, but Dwyane Wade is 102 field goals from doubling second on the all-time list Glen Rice, currently at 7,106. He's also 76 free throws from doubling second place Alonzo Mourning in that category, with 5,040. He has already well more than double each of those players total points, and will top the 20,000 point plateau before the end of the season if he averages 11 or more points per game the rest of the way.
Chris Bosh is six three-pointers from tying number 14 on the all-time list, with Ray Allen at 255.
Udonis Haslem will tie Dan Majerle in 16th all-time with three assists, at 717. He's still tied in ninth all-time for blocks, with Eddie Jones with 246.
Miami Heat: Tyler Johnson (shoulder), Hassan Whiteside (oblique), and Chris Andersen (knee) all may play tonight.
Atlanta Hawks: Paul Millsap (ankle) remains a game-time decision.
PG - Goran Dragic
SG - Dwyane Wade
C - Hassan Whiteside or Amar'e Stoudemire
SF - Luol Deng
PF - Chris Bosh
PG - Jeff Teague
SG - Kyle Korver
C - Al Horford
SF - Kent Bazemore
PF - Paul Millsap or Mike Scott
Tune in tonight around a quarter until six for the live game thread here at HHH.