Pistons 96 - HEAT 105 Game Recap

Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon
by Joe Beguiristain

The Miami HEAT defeated the Detroit Pistons 105-96 Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. Josh Richardson and Kelly Olynyk each led the HEAT with 17 points apiece.

1. J. Rich Comes Up Big

With Miami needing a boost in the second half, Josh Richardson answered the call on both ends of the floor.

In addition to holding his own on the defensive end against Reggie Bullock and Dwight Buycks, Richardson did a lot of damage off the dribble with mid-range jumpers and aggressive takes to the basket.

Here is an example of the latter near the end of the third quarter:

A litter later, he recovered well to swat Buycks in the fourth.

As you can see, J. Rich did a little bit of everything on Saturday.

In addition to his 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting, Richardson also had four boards, two assists, two steals and two blocks.

2. Winslow Stays Sharp

Justise Winslow has had himself some week, hasn’t he?

After recording a season high in points against the Grizzlies and Lakers, Winslow continued to show his versatility against the Pistons.

Not only did he make great reads as usual with the ball in his hands, but he also showed nice touch around the rim and remained ready for the catch in the post.

Oh yeah, he also came away with this heads-up steal and jam early in the fourth:

Speaking of defense, Winslow made things tough on Blake Griffin and Anthony Tolliver among others.

When it was all said and done, the 21-year-old Winslow tallied 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting, four rebounds, two assists, two steals and a team-high plus-20 rating.

3. JJ Rises To The Challenge

Guarding Blake Griffin is no easy task, but James Johnson didn’t let that faze him one bit.

Time and time again, Johnson battled hard with Griffin and helped force the 28-year-old into some very difficult outside shots.

On the offensive end, Johnson primarily operated from the perimeter, but he also finished a number of plays in transition, including this steal and slam in the first quarter:

Johnson finished with 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting, three steals and two rebounds.

Other Takeaways:

-With Bam Adebayo out, Olynyk played a little more at center and fought hard against Andre Drummond. Above all else though, Olynyk found the range again from downtown and went 3-of-5 from deep.

Need proof?

Just look at this deep three early in the second quarter with the shot clock winding down:

In addition to his 17 points on 6-of-10 shooting overall, Olynyk also totaled five rebounds, four assists and a plus-18 rating.

-Although Dwyane Wade didn’t lead the team in scoring this time around, he went on a nice little run in the second quarter, which included this fantastic sequence where he hit a tough turnaround jumper despite getting fouled by Ish Smith:

Wade ended up with 11 points, six boards and a plus-eight rating.

Game Note:

-Bam Adebayo (personal reasons) sat out. Wayne Ellington (left quad contusion), Tyler Johnson (left quad contusion), Derrick Walton Jr. (Sioux Falls assignment) and Dion Waiters (left ankle surgery) were inactive.

Looking Ahead:

-The HEAT will wrap up their homestand Monday night against the Suns at 7:30 PM. Tickets for that game can be found here.