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Heat cruise past Hawks, 115-91

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The Miami Heat went into halftime with a five-point lead over the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday night. At the 6:34 mark of the third quarter, Miami went up 75-53.

The Heat used a decisive 19-2 run to open the second half to blow out the Hawks 115-91 and win their third straight game. Max Strus, who again started tonight, went on a personal 8-0 run to open the period. Then, Kyle Lowry, Caleb Martin and P.J. Tucker got in on the action.

And when Atlanta cut the deficit to 14 early in the fourth quarter, Omer Yurtseven made back-to-back scores to push the Heat lead back to 18. Yurtseven scored nine of his 13 points in the final period and again showcased his passing skills with six assists.

Again playing without Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, Miami continued to show resiliency and improve to 26-15 on the season. Miami is now just percentage points behind the Brooklyn Nets for second place in the East. Who would’ve guessed that after the news of Adebayo’s injury broke?

The Heat started the game flat — turning the ball over, missing shots, and down 13-2. But Tyler Herro’s substitution turned the game around. He both scored and found open teammates to get the Heat back in the game before the third quarter explosion.

But a block on a potential alley-oop stood as Herro’s best highlight of the night. The third-year guard finished one rebound shy of a triple-double — 21 points on 9-of-19 shooting, 11 assists and nine rebounds.

Players on the Heat bench even yelled at Yurtseven for grabbing a rebound from Herro late in the fourth quarter. The rookie center collected 10 boards to extend his streak of double-figure rebounds Wednesday night. Tonight, both Yurtseven and Herro made winning plays to secure the win.

Both Gabe Vincent (health and safety protocols) and Dewayne Dedmon (knee injury) returned to the floor Wednesday night. Dedmon grabbed eight boards and scored six points in 18 minutes, while Vincent knocked down four 3-pointers to score 14 points. Erik Spoelstra was able to rest Kyle Lowry for the entire fourth quarter because he had a quality backup point guard in Vincent to help protect the lead.

Seven Heat players scored in double figures. Caleb Martin drove to the rim to compensate for some of Butler’s production. Martin actually finished with a double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds. He has consistently elevated his game when the circumstances have called for it.

P.J. Tucker knocked down two 3s — including one from above-the-break — and continued to help Miami run well on both ends of the floor. Duncan Robinson knocked down three 3s, and hit all three free throws when he got fouled on another attempt. Although Lowry didn’t score until the third quarter, he had six rebounds, five assists and three steals.

The Heat will host the Hawks at the FTX Arena Friday at 8 p.m.

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GameThread: Florida Panthers at Seattle Kraken

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Panthers (28-8-5 61P) at Kraken (12-24-4 28P)

FLA in Season Series: Game 2 of 2 (0-1-0) – LBC Caterwaul

PLAYER STATS: Florida / Seattle

Where: Climate Pledge Arena, Seattle, WA

When: 9:00 p.m. ET

Watch: Bally Sports Florida, Root-NW

Listen: Panthers Radio Network

Enemy Intel: Davy Jones Locker Room

Socials: #TimeToHunt, #SeaKraken, #FLAvsSEA, @LitterBoxCats, LBC FaceBook

Expected starters: Florida: Bobrovsky (20-3-3 2.38) / Seattle: Grubauer (9-15-4 3.26)

Sunday in the Atlantic (Standings/Panthers Playoff Chances):

  • OTTAWA (11-20-3 25P) at Columbus (18-19-1 37P) 7 p.m.

Idle: TBL (61P), TOR (53P), BOS (50P), DET (42P), BUF (33P), MTL (23P)

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GameThread: Los Angeles Lakers (23-23) @ Miami Heat (29-17)

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This is our GAMETHREAD: Chat live about the game here!

The Miami Heat (29-17) host the Los Angeles Lakers (23-23) at the FTX Arena on Sunday at 6:00pm.

Anthony Davis has been ruled out for the game and will miss his 17th consecutive game after being upgraded to questionable earlier today.

PJ Tucker was previously listed in the injury report as questionable with calf soreness but he will be active today.

INACTIVE/INJURIES

MIAMI:

  • Victor Oladipo: out (knee; surgery rehab)
  • Kyle Lowry: out (personal reasons)
  • KZ Okpala: out (wrist)
  • Markieff Morris: out (conditioning)
  • Tyler Herro: out (H/S Protocols)

LOS ANGELES:

  • Anthony Davis: out (knee)
  • Sekou Doumbouya: out (health and safety protocols)
  • Kendrick Nunn: out (knee)

TV: Bally Sports Sun, NBA TV, NBA League Pass

Tipoff: 6:00 p.m.

Radio: WAXY 790 / WAQI 710 / Sirius XM Channel 895 (Heat Radio Network simulcast)

Starting Lineups

Lakers Position Heat
Lakers Position Heat
Russell Westbrook PG Gabe Vincent
Avery Bradley SG Duncan Robinson
Trevor Ariza SF Jimmy Butler
LeBron James PF PJ Tucker
Dwight Howard C Bam Adebayo

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Erik Spoelstra says his sons are big fans of LeBron James for an unconventional reason

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Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra indicated that his two sons are fans of LeBron James, but because of his appearance in “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” not basketball.

I also love how Erik Spoelstra referred to his two sons as the “Spo Bros.” https://t.co/s9v2yyCgNz

— Anthony Chiang (@Anthony_Chiang) January 23, 2022

The Heat and Lakers battle each other in Miami on Sunday night, with Spoelstra’s sons in attendance. While they’ll no doubt focus on their father, they’ll get to see James playing the game that made him famous enough to be in that film.

Spoelstra’s sons weren’t around during the four years in which their father served as James’ head coach from 2010 to 2014. During that span, James, along with players like Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, led the Heat to trips to the finals and two NBA titles.

James’ key role in those championships also came with Finals MVP awards as well. After James left the Heat in 2014, he went on to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA title, as well as the Los Angeles Lakers to one four years later.

Sunday’s game and the fanfare surrounding it may leave an immediate impact with the younger Spoelstras, though their father’s influence figures to resonate much more deeply in the years ahead.

Still, at some point in the future, the elder Spoelstra will be in attendance when James enters the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Perhaps at that point, they’ll have a better understanding of just how much of an impact James has had on the game.

The Heat begin a four-game homestand with their game against the Lakers, with a Wednesday date against the New York Knicks next on the schedule.

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