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GAME PREVIEW: Heat take on lottery-bound Thunder

The Heat may be shorthanded again tonight when they face the lottery-bound Thunder.

NBA: Minnesota Timberwolves at Miami Heat Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

GAME STORY

The Miami Heat (46-24) wrap up a light week of games when they host the Oklahoma City Thunder (20-49) tonight at the FTX Arena with tip-off scheduled for 8:00pm.

Much like their only other game this week, the Heat face a potentially dangerous lottery-bound opponent with nothing to lose, because they’ve already lost so many games this season. The Thunder are on a current seven-game losing streak, having recently suffered a 122-120 loss to the San Antonio Spurs on a buzzer-beater courtesy of Lonnie Walker. Already missing several players, leading scorer Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is questionable tonight with an ankle issue. He’s averaging 24.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 5.9 assists this season — and has upped his averages recently to 30.6 points and 6.5 rebounds while shooting 53.5% from the field over the past 10 games.

Miami could also be shorthanded tonight, and quite frankly some players like Jimmy Butler and Caleb Martin could use some extra rest against a hobbled opponent that has gone 11-23 on the road. Reserves such as Max Strus and Gabe Vincent can comfortably play big minutes, while veterans Victor Oladipo and Markieff Morris need the extra time on the court to get back in NBA shape ahead of the playoffs.

The two teams meet for the second time this season, with Miami emerging victorious 103-90 on Nov. 16. Tyler Herro had a game-high 26 points while Luguentz Dort (who has since been lost for the season with a shoulder injury) led the Thunder with 20 points.

Eastern Conference Finals Schedule

GAME DATE MATCHUP TIME TV
GAME DATE MATCHUP TIME TV
Game 1 Tuesday, May 17 Boston @ Miami 8:30 p.m. ET ESPN
Game 2 Thursday, May 19 Boston @ Miami 8:30 p.m. ET ESPN
Game 3 Saturday, May 21 Miami @ Boston 8:30 p.m. ET ABC
Game 4 Monday, May 23 Miami @ Boston 8:30 p.m. ET ABC
Game 5* Wednesday, May 25 Boston @ Miami 8:30 p.m. ET ESPN
Game 6* Friday, May 27 Miami @ Boston 8:30 p.m. ET ESPN
Game 7* Sunday, May 29 Boston @ Miami 8:30 p.m. ET ESPN
Game Details

INACTIVE/INJURIES

MIAMI:

  • Javonte Smart: out (two-way)
  • Kyle Guy: out (two-way)
  • Caleb Martin: questionable (knee)
  • Jimmy Butler: questionable (ankle)
  • PJ Tucker: questionable (left knee irritation)

OKC:

  • Josh Giddey: out (hip)
  • Ty Jerome: out for season (hip)
  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: day to day (ankle)
  • Kenrich Williams: out (knee)
  • Jeremiah Robinson-Earl: out (foot)
  • Derrick Favors: out (back)
  • Mike Muscala: out for season (ankle)
  • Luguentz Dort: out for season (shoulder)

ODDS:

  • Heat -14.5
  • O/U: 220
  • Money line: Heat -1500, Thunder +850

LINEUPS

Projected Starters

Celtics Position Heat
Celtics Position Heat
Marcus Smart PG Kyle Lowry
Derrick White SG Tyler Herro
Jaylen Brown SF Max Strus
Jayson Tatum PF Caleb Martin
Al Horford C Bam Adebayo

BROADCAST INFO

TV: Bally Sports Sun, NBA League Pass
RADIO: The Ticket 790AM & The HEAT Radio Network (Jason Jackson, Ruth Riley Hunter)
SPANISH RADIO: WAQI 710AM & The HEAT Spanish Radio Network (José Pañeda, Joe Pujala)

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