Heat star Jimmy Butler secured his fourth triple-double in his last five games, a tremendous accomplishment regardless of Miami’s record across that span. Tonight, Butler finished with 13 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds on 46.2% shooting.
With the triple-double, Butler became the first player in Heat history to record three straight triple-doubles. Bam Adebayo joined Butler in his triple-double ways, finishing with 16 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists — notching his final assist in the closing moments of the game with a dish to Tyler Herro.
With Miami getting off to yet another strong first-half start, it was reasonable to suspect another second-half drop, as seen in last night’s loss to the Golden State Warriors. Instead, the Heat were able to hold onto its lead throughout the game.
Sacramento alternated between hot hands, with forward Nemanja Bjelica starting and ending the game strong, guard DaQuan Jeffries erupting off the bench in the third quarter and Marvin Bagley III playing well throughout. Bjelica finished with 25 points while Jeffries and Bagley adding 17 and 19 points respectively.
While Jeffries shot 6-of-6 from the floor, including 5-for-5 from downtown, the Heat were able to hold star De’Aaron Fox to just 11 points while limiting sharpshooter Buddy Hield to five points on 20% shooting. The Heat also held rookie phenom Tyrese Haliburton to just eight points.
As for Miami’s other leading performers, Herro had something to prove after a rough game against Golden State, and ended with 27 points off the bench. It was a great overall team performance for Miami, as Kelly Olynyk added 22 points, Kendrick Nunn scored 16 and had Duncan Robinson shooting 5-of-11 for downtown for his 20-point performance.
Of particular interest to Heat fans, it was intriguing to see Bjelica starting and performing well, given the well-publicized trade interest that the Heat has in the forward. Bjelica did not play in 14 straight games and is coming off a game in which he played just under five minutes.
It’s been a rough week for the Heat following three losses, but a win should help guide the team to a sense of normalcy. It will need some sort of stability as the Heat continues its road trip, setting up an NBA Finals rematch against the Los Angeles Lakers in its next game.
The game against the Lakers is set to tip-off at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 20, with the game being streamed on ABC. Make sure to follow along with Hot Hot Hoops for live coverage of the game!