Wade Looks To Stay Home, Heat Visit Grizzlies
Posted Dec 2 2006 1:34PM
NBA.com Daily Confidential
Dwyane Wade hasn't shot under 40 percent from the field in two straight games this season.
The All-Star guard will try to keep that streak going as he leads the Miami Heat (6-9) into a four-game road trip Saturday night against the defensive-minded Memphis Grizzlies (4-11).
Wade shot 5-for-23 (21 percent) in an 87-85 home loss to Detroit on Thursday. He scored at least 33 points in each of his previous three games, when the Heat went 2-1 and averaged 103.0 points.
``I love him,'' Heat coach Pat Riley said. ``Five-for-23 or 10-for-12, it doesn't make any difference.''
With 2 seconds left and Miami trailing the Pistons by a point, Wade tried a 19-foot jumper that barely reached the rim. Otherwise, he had a strong game: eight assists, no turnovers, five rebounds and 21 points.
``I want to hit every one of them, but it's not scripted that way,'' Wade said.
The Heat, who had shot better than 55 percent in their previous two games, made 41 percent of their shots against Detroit. Now they begin a stretch of four straight games on the road, where they're 3-3 and are allowing 100.2 points per game.
Miami forward Wayne Simien will not make the trip, as he's sidelined indefinitely with a salmonella infection, the same ailment that struck him last summer. Heat swingman James Posey, meanwhile, returned Thursday after missing five games with a calf injury.
Memphis allowed 100 points or more for the first time in seven games Wednesday night, losing 105-90 to the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Grizzlies rank among the league leaders in scoring defense, allowing 95.8 points per game, but have been missing swingman Eddie Jones.
Jones has been sidelined with Achilles' tendinitis, and Memphis' defense has suffered.
``Eddie can really defend people, and we miss that right now,'' Grizzlies coach Mike Fratello said. ``We've got a number of people on given nights that score against us and we don't have that guy there to stop them right now.''
Memphis has also been without point guard Damon Stoudamire, who has sat out two straight games because of soreness in his surgically repaired right knee. His status for Saturday is uncertain.
Hakim Warrick scored 22 points against the Clippers to lead the Grizzlies, owners of one of the NBA's worst records after finishing with the fourth-best mark in the Western Conference last season. Memphis, which won at Denver 108-96 on Tuesday, has yet to win consecutive games.
``We just have to continue to try and get better,'' Grizzlies swingman Mike Miller said.
Warrick leads Memphis with 15.7 points per game.
Miami won both of its matchups against Memphis last season, holding the Grizzlies to 80.0 points per contest.
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