It’s okay, you can admit. Visions of the Miami Heat challenging the NBA record of wins set by the Golden State Warriors last season flashed by your mind when they held a 19-point lead in the third quarter against the Charlotte Hornets after an impressive season-opening win against the Orlando Magic.
Then it all came crashing down. Coach Erik Spoelstra held Hassan Whiteside out too long on the bench with four fouls and the Hornets subsequently clamped down on the Heat’s open road to the paint that they had enjoyed for their first six quarters of the season. Then the fears of the Heat lacking a primary scoring threat without Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to help pull them out of their offensive funk came rushing back when the Heat failed to recapture any momentum, in their home opener no less, and ultimately lost to the Hornets.
In truth, it’s just two games into the season and the Heat will continue to show flashes of solid basketball, as they showed in the preseason as well, and also plenty of moments where these same players, trying to establish chemistry among so many new pieces, will also be standing around in a flummoxed state looking at each other as if to say, “Now what?”
Though a loss to a division rival such as the Hornets in what seemed like an easy road to win No. 2 certainly stings (pun intended), Miami will have to pick up the pieces and try to learn from that setback as they host the San Antonio Spurs, winners of their first three games.
Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili should be well rested after sitting out last night’s game and six-time All-Star Pau Gasol, 36, remains a threat at center but the team will not play LaMarcus Aldridge, who also sat in their recent preseason visit to Miami.
The game tips off at 6pm so check back at HHH for the GameThread and follow the action along with fellow fans!
San Antonio Spurs (3-0) @ Miami Heat (1-1)
6:00 PM EST at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami, FL
TV: SunSports // Radio: 790 the Ticket
Heat: Goran Dragic, Dion Waiters, Justise Winslow, Luke Babbitt, Hassan Whiteside
Spurs: Tony Parker, Danny Green, Kawhi Leonard, David Lee, Pau Gasol