Bam was the first to score for the Heat, showing no signs of knee pain. He carried the offense early, throwing down alley-oops and sinking midrange jumpers. On defense, Jovic looked hot and cold as he stayed in front of Gobert but struggled to defend the key against the more athletic attackers like Anthony Edwards. Still, he made up for it with his hustle for boards.
Lowry also worked to anchor the offense looking more like his Friday self. It was nice to see him executing the high pick and roll with Bam. The Heat was exceptional in the paint, scoring most of their points inside. But at the same time, so was Minnesota with KAT feasting on easy buckets. The Wolves kept things incredibly close, as the lead fluctuated often.
Bam really set the tone on both ends, keeping the Heat competitive even with the reserves coming in. Jamal Cain and Highsmith were great on offense getting Miami up ahead by a very slim margin, but shifting momentum in the Heat’s favor heading into the second quarter. Dedmon had some great moments to start the second, but there were times went his age really showed. Dedmon has flashes, but he really just isn’t a long-term solution for the Heat.
The Heat managed to keep their lead, but the offense stagnated with Max struggling to hit threes along with Jovic. Luckily, Strus would break the slump with back-to-back threes and with some help from Bam and Highsmith, get Miami out to a comfortable 10-point lead. Miami continued to build on that lead thanks to great shooting from Max, and aggressive slashing by Bam, Highsmith, Jovic, and Martin.
Bam got into a little bit of foul trouble to start the second half, limiting his aggressiveness on defense. This opened the window for the Wolves, and they took advantage on a 6-1 run. With the Wolves chipping away thanks to a surge by Anthony Edwards, Miami’s lead was reduced to single digits. On a 12-2 run, Miami’s 13-point lead fell to just one. Bam, Cain, and others fought to stay ahead but with momentum in the hands of the Wolves, it was only a matter of time before they’d take back the lead.
The Heat’s defense looked porous as they attempted to guard the three and absolutely failed. Pair that with an anemic offense all of a sudden, and you’ve summed up the season so far. Even after being pummeled for the majority of the third quarter, the Heat stayed within striking distance and finished the quarter strong.
The Heat continued that momentum into the fourth with Highsmith and Cain showing a lot of hustle. That in conjunction with some Lowry and Strus buckets allowed the Heat to tie things up once again, and take the lead. This began a renewed back-and-forth battle with Anthony Edwards showing more star power than in his appearance in Hustle.
The Heat tied things up with just under 3 minutes remaining, but De’Angelo Russell’s untimely first bucket stole back the lead. Thankfully, some spectacular defense by Kyle Lowry against KAT (yes you read that right) gave Miami an opportunity. Kyle hit a heroic bucket, but a bad foul by Strus sent Gobert to the line putting things just out of reach. The Heat would come up short yet again adding another blemish to what’s been an incredibly disappointing season so far.