GameDay Preview: Cavs at Miami Heat
The Cavaliers (18-37) seek their second straight road victory tonight as they travel to South Beach to take on the Miami Heat (39-14). Tipoff is at 6:00 p.m. ET.
Cleveland is 7-1 in their last seven games against Eastern Conference opponents. The Cavs are coming off a 118-94 win over Orlando Magic last night. In the victory, seven Cavaliers scored in double figures led by Marreese Speights' 18 points off the bench.
Miami comes into tonight's game riding a 10-game winning streak. The Heat are led by their trio of All-Stars, guard Dwyane Wade (21.1 ppg), forward LeBron James (27.0 ppg) and center Chris Bosh (17.3 ppg).
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The Cavaliers trail the all-time series against the Heat, 39-49, posting a 26-17 mark in games played at home with the Heat hold a 32-13 advantage while playing in their own arena.
This will be the second of four contests between the Cavs and Heat this season. The two teams met earlier this season in Miami. In that game, Cleveland led the defending World Champs for most of the night, and Daniel Gibson’s three-pointer with just under two minutes to play, the Wine and Gold held a 108-101 lead. Then, Heat guard Ray Allen scored the game’s next six points – part of his 15-point fourth quarter – as the Heat handed the Cavaliers a difficult 110-108 loss.
Key to the Game/Key Matchups
Key to the Game
Taking Care of the Basketball
Miami comes into the game as the league's fifth highest scoring team at just over 103 points per game. Much of their offense is predicated on converting turnovers into fastbreak opportunities with 18.3% of their scoring coming off of their opponent's miscues.
The Wine and Gold commit 14.2 turnovers per game (7th lowest in the league). The Cavaliers have been doing a great job of taking care of the basketball as of late and must continue to do so tonight in hopes of limiting Miami's fastbreak opportunities.
Cavs Bench vs. Heat Bench
In the second game of a back-to-back, a teams' bench becomes a vital aspect of the game, and with the Cavs and Heat both having played the night before, the reserves will be a key matchup in tonight's contest.
The Cavaliers' bench has been on a roll recently and were a big factor in last night's blowout of the Magic. The Wine and Gold reserves scored 59 points off the bench and had three players score 15+ points.
The Heat are 16-1 this season when their bench outscores the opponent's bench.
Where to Catch the Action