HEAT 103 - Pistons 112 Game Recap

Photo Credit: Chris Schwegler
by Joe Beguiristain

The Miami HEAT fell to the Detroit Pistons 112-103 Sunday afternoon at Little Caesars Arena. Hassan Whiteside led the way for the HEAT with 20 points.

1. Whiteside Gets Going After Halftime

After a slow start to the game, Whiteside came out with a vengeance in the second half. In fact, the big fella scored 18 of his 20 points after halftime, including this nifty and-one drive against Andre Drummond.

While Whiteside’s scoring was important, one of his more impressive sequences naturally came on the defensive end:

After rotating well to block Reggie Bullock, he inhibited Drummond from converting the tip-in on Bullock’s second attempt and then absorbed contact from the Pistons’ center, which gave possession back to the HEAT.

In addition to his team-high 20 points on 9-of-16 shooting, Whiteside also led the team with 12 rebounds and two blocks.

2. Richardson Continues To Show His Two-Way Ability

Josh Richardson got off to a quick start early on thanks to Miami’s pristine ball movement, as he knocked down a bunch of shots from the perimeter.

That said, he also came though with this nice and-one finish in the second quarter:

On the flip side of the ball, Richardson competed hard against a tough cover in Reggie Jackson for most of the contest.

You also can’t forget about this great two-handed block on Luke Kennard late in the third:

In all, Richardson tallied 15 points on 5-of-11 shooting, five boards, four assists and a steal to go along with that aforementioned block.

3. Quick Start For Dragić

Goran Dragić had it all going in the first quarter. How so?

Well, he scored 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting, dished out two assists and even blocked Ish Smith on a reverse layup attempt in the period:

While Dragić didn’t score that much later in the game, he still created well for his teammates.

When it was all said and done, the Slovenian totaled 18 points, a team-high seven assists and four rebounds in addition to that previously mentioned block on Smith.

Other Takeaways:

-Dion Waiters had a nice surge in the second quarter with some great plays in transition, including this huge jam with Bullock and Tobias Harris in the vicinity:

Otherwise, Waiters set up his teammates with some great feed feeds and had some nice deflections on the defensive end.

The 25-year-old ended up with 16 points, five assists and three steals.

Game Note:

-Rodney McGruder (left tibia surgery), Derrick Walton Jr. (coach's decision), A.J. Hammons (Sioux Falls assignment) and Matt Williams Jr. (Sioux Falls assignment) were inactive.

Looking Ahead:

-The HEAT will finally return home after a season-long six-game road trip, in which they finished 3-3. Miami will be back in action on Wednesday at 7:30 PM against the Washington Wizards. Tickets for that game at AmericanAirlines Arena can be found here.

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