76ers-Heat Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated April 06, 2013
The Miami Heat have two wins in their three games without LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, with big thanks to one of the team's reserves. With the status of both James and Wade unclear for Saturday's home game against Philadelphia, the Heat may again need big contributions from Mike Miller to get a 15th straight regular-season win over the 76ers. Having already clinched first place in the Eastern Conference, Miami (59-16) can afford to rest James, who is dealing with a tight right hamstring, as well as Wade, who has multiple right leg injuries. Both were listed by the team as probable starters for Friday in Charlotte but wound up sitting along with Ray Allen, who suffered a right ankle injury in Tuesday's loss to New York. Despite being without the combined 59.0 points per game from those three, the Heat beat the Bobcats 89-79, getting a season-high 26 points from Miller. Miller hit 7 of 11 3-pointers, and is averaging 18.7 points in the last three games - 14.5 better than his season average. "He is a big-time weapon that we have," coach Erik Spoelstra said of Miller, a career 40.4 percent shooter from long distance. "He has absolutely bought into the sacrifice. You know the long season of an 82-game season, this is probably the healthiest he has ever been at this time of year and you see his value. He can strike it hot at any moment and go on a string of four, five, or six in a row." The Heat also got 18 points from Chris Bosh and 14 from Rashard Lewis. Mario Chalmers had six points and seven assists after missing three games with a sprained ankle. Miami has outscored the 76ers by an average of 12.4 points in the season's first three meetings, and hasn't lost in the regular season in the series since March 15, 2009. Philadelphia defeated Atlanta 101-90 on Friday for its fifth victory in seven games, but the late-season surge might be coming too late. The 76ers (31-44) are five games back of Milwaukee for eighth place in the East with seven to play, but they're not giving up. They're 3-2 on the road since March 24 after losing their previous 15 away from Philadelphia. "These games are important for us," coach Doug Collins said. "I've got young players. Little things that you keep teaching, that's why we're going to coach and teach and play these games to the finish." Collins has seen miserable shooting performances from leading scorer Jrue Holiday (18.1 ppg) over the last two games, as he's gone a combined 5 of 38 (13.2 percent) for 14 points against the Bobcats and Hawks. Evan Turner has assumed the primary scoring load recently, averaging 20.8 points over the last four contests. Spencer Hawes has also been solid inside for Philadelphia lately, averaging a double-double over his last 13 games with 16.0 points and 10.3 rebounds. Hawes averaged 10.1 points and 6.6 rebounds in his previous 62 games. Thaddeus Young totaled 49 points on 23-of-35 shooting with 18 rebounds in his two games against Miami this season.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

LeBron James says Kevin Love-Celtics trade rumor is false

Michael Jordan gifts Kobe Bryant full set of Air Jordans

Bethune-Cookman football player killed at party

Former UFC heavyweight Kevin Randleman dead at 44

WATCH: Chelsea scores three goals in less than 20 minutes

Broncos safety Shiloh Keo arrested for DUI

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Mountain West admits error, says Boise St. shot was good

WATCH: John Calipari loses his mind, gets ejected

Former Clemson star Tajh Boyd to speak at John Kasich rally

Peyton Manning's alleged not-so-wholesome image

Hawks not shopping Al Horford at NBA trade deadline

Report: Lincecum has been throwing in secret location

Check out this custom camouflage Oregon helmet

Ejected John Calipari tweets “they don’t need me and I love it”

Popovich would 'buy ticket' to watch Warriors play

Jamal Murray destroyed South Carolina defender with dunk

WATCH: Lon Kruger gets Oklahoma hoops squad hype for Kansas test

Texas signee glad he didn’t pick Texas A&M after alleged racism

Dallas Stars have passed the early tests in February

Could Matt Forte become the revival for Patriots run game?

Are the Celtics legimate contenders in the East?

WATCH: Jabari Parker is no joke at NBA Rising Stars Challenge

How Marvelous Marv Throneberry became a Met

WATCH: Filip Forsberg goes beast on Lightning with this goal

Carmelo Anthony on trade rumors: ‘I’m not going anywhere’

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Ranking the ten best free agent pitcher signings

Who had the best NBA All-Star Game of the last 40 years?

The winners and losers of the 2016 MLB offseason

On Kobe Bryant and taking greatness for granted

Bucks need to choose between wins, development

Fantasy booking WrestleMania 32

Unrestricted free agents each team must consider re-signing

QUIZ: Name the winners of the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker