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Game Preview: Miami Heat looking to snap 4 game skid in Philly against PJ Tucker, Embiid and 76ers

This will be the first time seeing former Heatle PJ Tucker this season.

NBA: Playoffs-Miami Heat at Philadelphia 76ers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Game Story:

The Miami Heat have lost four straight games. It doesn’t get any easier tonight as they are set to play another Eastern Conference contender in the Philadelphia 76ers, the first of back to back matchups between these two teams. This one will be in Philly as the next game will be in Miami. The 32-29 Heat will have a tough task to break out of this slump against a team that is 39-20. However, the 76ers are coming off a loss to the Boston Celtics.

Heat Nation has seen this team get plenty of standout wins this year against top teams, and I expect this one to be a close contest. This is the first time Miami has played Philly this season, and the first time being in Philadelphia since the iconic playoff Jimmy Butler quote: “Tobias Harris over me?!” A big difference this time around is now PJ Tucker is on the other side. Someone that made a serious impact in South Beach and was a key reason why Miami was number 1 in the East last season.

Bigger news for the Heat is that Kyle Lowry is appearing to be back in the lineup tonight, as he was upgraded to questionable for the first time in weeks.

With all the struggles and inconsistency that this season has brought for Lowry, seeing the last few games end in disappointing loss after disappointing loss without him playing has given a reason for optimism. Maybe we needed to see a stretch without Lowry and Gabe Vincent starting to show us all that Vincent isn’t as ready to be a starting PG as we initially thought. Vincent has had good moments, but he has struggled to shoot as of late.

It will definitely be interesting to see the Lowry impact with new addition Kevin Love now in the starting group. However, that’s only if Lowry ends up starting again right off an injury. He could be playing off the bench tonight, keeping Vincent as the starter. Heat fans won’t know for sure until closer to tip off, but my expectation is that QB1 will be plugged back into the lineup and start tonight. A healthy Lowry could make a difference for this team, and at this point everybody should be willing to see that.

The key to winning this game will be shooting and defense, but especially defense in terms of containing the superstar duo of Joel Embiid and James Harden. Miami needs to start hitting their shots, and as long as they can generate good looks there is a chance that the shooting can turn around and shots start to fall. The only main question mark in today’s injury report is Tyler Herro who is listed as questionable due to a right rib injury, he will most likely be closer to a game time decision.

The game will be nationally televised on NBA TV at 7:00 PM ET.

Injury Report:


  • Kevin Love, probable
  • Kyle Lowry, questionable
  • Tyler Herro, questionable
  • Omer Yurtseven, out
  • Nikola Jovic, out


  • Dewayne Dedmon, out
  • Louis King, out
  • Mac McClung, out
  • Jaden Springer, out

Probable Starters:


  • Jimmy Butler
  • Kevin Love
  • Bam Adebayo
  • Tyler Herro
  • Kyle Lowry


  • Tobias Harris
  • PJ Tucker
  • Joel Embiid
  • James Harden
  • De’Anthony Melton

ODDS (via FanDuel)

Check the odds out at FanDuel!

Broadcast Info:

Tipoff: 7:00 PM EST

TV: NBA TV & Bally Sports Sun (Eric Reid, John Crotty)

Radio: AM 560 Sports WQAM & The HEAT Radio Network (Jason Jackson)

Spanish Radio: WAQI 710 AM & The HEAT Spanish Radio Network (José Pañeda)

Come back to Hot Hot Hoops at game time to join our GameThread and chat about the game live with other Heat fans!