HEAT 97 - Cavaliers 108 Game Recap

Photo Credit: David Liam Kyle
by Joe Beguiristain

The Miami HEAT fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers 108-97 Tuesday night at Quicken Loans Arena. Dion Waiters led the way for the HEAT with 21 points.

1. Career Night For Bam

Although Bam Adebayo hadn’t played in seven of the nine games before Tuesday, it was clear that he remained ready. From the very moment he checked into the game, the rookie made an impact.

In addition to three monster jams, including this one in transition over J.R. Smith and Dwyane Wade…

…he also showed his passing skills on this nifty dish to James Johnson:

On the defensive end, Adebayo competed hard against Kevin Love and Channing Frye, but he was really impressive when switched onto LeBron James late in the second quarter.

On that play, Adebayo initially stopped James from attacking the basket. Then, the 20-year-old didn’t buy James’ pump-fake and ultimately forced the vet to shoot an airball.

A little later in the fourth quarter, Adebayo did a nice job of defending Jeff Green and also came through with some silky-smooth jumpers.

When it was all said and done, the former Kentucky Wildcat scored a career-high 19 points on a perfect 7-of-7 shooting to go along with six boards, two assists, one block and a plus-13 rating.

2. Waiters Leads The Charge

In an otherwise tough first half for Miami, Waiters played very well through the first two quarters. In fact, the 25-year-old scored 17 points before halftime thanks to a mix of outside shots and aggressive takes to the rack.

As the game progressed, he continued to get into the paint, such as on this drive late in the third quarter when he split the defense for the score:

In addition to his team-high 21 points, Waiters also led the team with seven assists.

3. J. Rich Gets Going

After struggling with his shot over the past few games, Josh Richardson flipped the script against the Cavaliers. The 24-year-old actually nailed three of his five shots from deep, as he found his comfort zones on the floor. That said, he also took advantage on a few buckets in transition.

In all, Richardson totaled 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting, two assists and a steal.

Game Note:

-Okaro White (left foot surgery), Rodney McGruder (left tibia surgery), A.J. Hammons (Sioux Falls assignment) and Matt Williams Jr. (Sioux Falls assignment) were inactive.

Looking Ahead:

-The HEAT will get right back to it Wednesday night against the Knicks at 7:30 PM. Miami’s next home game will be on Friday against the Hornets at 8:00 PM. Tickets for that game at AmericanAirlines Arena can be found here.

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