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GAME PREVIEW: Heat visit Blazers for final West matchup

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The Miami Heat will play one more game out West against the Blazers before returning the South Florida.

Robert Duyos-USA TODAY Sports

The Heat are ending their quick 3-game West coast road trip agains the Blazers, hoping to go home with a 2-1 record. The Blazers are 6th in the West and eyeing the Grizzlies for 5th place. Both teams have a lot to win and lose coming down the stretch.

GAME DETAILS:
Miami Heat (44-31) @ Portland Trail Blazers (40-36)
10:00 PM EST on Fox Sports Heat and NBALP

INJURY REPORT:
Miami -- Dwyane Wade (neck, back), doubtful; Tyler Johnson (shoulder), OUT; Chris Bosh (illness), OUT
Portland -- Chris Kaman (illness), questionable.

Probable Starters
Goran Dragic PG Damian Lillard
Gerald Green SG C.J. McCollum
Joe Johnson SF Maurice Harkless
Luol Deng PF Al-Farouq Aminu
Amare Stoudemire C Mason Plumlee


GAME PREVIEW:
The Heat come into Portland after a close-call in Sacramento. The Heat held off the Kings for a 112-106 win. Now, they've got one more game against a Western Conference opponent for the season, the Blazers.

Portland has won three in a row, and will present problems for Miami. With a great backcourt duo in Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, the Heat will have to try and keep up. Without Dwyane Wade, more defensive assignment is given to Gerald Green, and you never know what you will get.

Regardless, there are two keys for the Heat to win this game. The first is to try and contain the back court. The Heat won't stop them, but they can contain them, and some of that will be forcing them to the rim to meet Hassan Whiteside. Secondly, the Heat have to rebound. Portland is a top 5 rebounding team and they put out athletic bigs. That means boxing out is key.

If the Heat can do that, they have a chance to walk away with a win even without Wade. And a win here is very important for Miami.

Join us for the game and come back to the GameThread going live at 9:30 PM.

To learn more about the Blazers, visit Blazer's Edge.