HEAT Win Fifth Straight, Take Down Cavs 113-98

Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo
Photo Credit: David Alvarez
by Joe Beguiristain
HEAT.com

Hey, look, another dub.

Thanks to solid defense for most of the contest, the HEAT defeated the Cavs 113-98 Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena for their fifth-straight win.

Let’s get into how they got the job done.

1. Jimmy Continues To Get Buckets

So…Cleveland had no answer for Jimmy Butler in this one.

Early on, the 31-year-old did the bulk of his damage off the ball cutting to the basket and led all players with 14 points in the first half, with his last bucket coming off yet another steal from behind.

He’s so crafty, isn’t he?

As the game progressed, Butler continued to get to the bucket and played strong defense in both man and zone looks to keep Miami ahead.

In other words, Jimmy was Jimmy.

In all, Butler amassed a game-high 28 points on 11-of-16 shooting from the field and a perfect 6-of-6 from the charity stripe, a game-high 12 boards, four assists, two steals and a plus-14 rating.

2. Bam Makes History

After missing the past four games with left knee tendinitis, Bam Adebayo wasted little time to get going against the Cavs.

In fact, he kicked off the game with a pinpoint bounce pass to Duncan Robinson and never looked back. From there, Adebayo continued to set up his teammates, free them up with solid screens and mix up his offensive approach with jumpers and finishes inside.

And with the HEAT trying to put Cleveland away for good late in the fourth, he forced Collin Sexton into a miss and completed a three-point play on the other end to become the youngest player in HEAT history to score 3,000 points.

When it was all said and done, Adebayo tallied 14 points on 6-of-14 shooting, nine rebounds, six assists and a game-high two blocks (tied with Kelly Olynyk, Jarrett Allen and JaVale McGee).

3. KO At It Again

Another night, another strong performance from KO.

From the opening tip, Olynyk moved well off the ball and finished plays around the basket as usual.

We also can’t forget about this alley-oop jam on the break early in the third:

(Also note the great read and steal from Robinson and perfect lob from Adebayo.)

That’s teamwork at its finest.

Speaking of which, Olynyk also trapped well and played solid help defense throughout the night to keep Cleveland stagnant more often than not.

As such, Olynyk finished with a game-high plus-21 rating to go along with 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting, eight rebounds, four assists, a game-high three steals and a game-high two blocks (tied with Adebayo, Allen and McGee).

Other Takeaways:

-Kendrick Nunn hit his 200th-career trey…

…and concluded with 10 points on 4-of-9 shooting, including 2-of-3 from downtown, five boards, two assists, one steal and a plus-19 rating.

Game Notes:

-The HEAT have now won 19 straight against the Cavs in Miami.

-Avery Bradley (right calf strain) and Meyers Leonard (league suspension) were inactive.

Looking Ahead:

-The HEAT will head to Memphis to face the Grizzlies on Wednesday at 9PM. Miami will then head back home to host the Pacers on Friday night and Sunday afternoon. You can get tickets for those games here.

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