Originally posted on Fox Sports Florida  |  Last updated 3/25/13
Game time: 7 p.m. ETTV: Sun Sports The Miami Heat needed a clutch shot by LeBron James to beat the Orlando Magic earlier this month to keep their staggering winning streak going. Injuries to the Magic's top two scorers will likely keep that from happening this time. James and the Heat will try to avoid some recent early struggles in order to make things easier on themselves Monday night when they face the Magic seeking a 27th straight win. Miami (55-14) continues to close in on the Los Angeles Lakers' record of 33 wins in a row set in 1971-72, but the streak was nearly snapped by Orlando on March 6. James came through with a go-ahead layup with 3.2 seconds left before Arron Afflalo missed a 40-footer at the buzzer, as the Heat held on to win 97-96 at home. They also needed some late help from James in their last visit to Orlando, as the superstar put Miami ahead for good by making two free throws in the final seconds of a 112-110 overtime win Dec. 31. James has totaled 62 points in those two meetings, but those heroics may not be needed since the Magic are expected to be without Afflalo and Nikola Vucevic, who average 15.5 and 12.4 points, respectively. Afflalo was lost for the season to a strained right hamstring in Friday's 97-89 loss to Oklahoma City, while Vucevic has missed two games with a concussion. Orlando has dropped six games in a row, yielding an average of 106.0 points. Miami may be looking to capitalize on the short-handed Magic after needing to overcome double-digit deficits in each of the past four games. The latest came Sunday, when the Heat were down 11 early before overpowering league-worst Charlotte 109-77. James led the way with 32 points on 11-of-14 shooting, 10 assists and eight rebounds. "We've been having slow starts," James said. "But it's not how we start. It's how we finish." The Heat were without All-Star guard Dwyane Wade on Sunday because of right knee soreness that the team deems as minor. Having him back against Orlando (18-52) would likely provide a jolt since he's averaged 28.3 points in 31 career meetings. Wade scored 24 points on 10 of 16 from the field in the latest matchup. The Heat's winning streak will be tested in this four-game road trip. After facing Orlando, they'll visit Chicago and New Orleans before ending the swing Sunday at Western Conference-leading San Antonio. Right now, Magic coach Jacque Vaughn is just happy that his team is showing some fight since it's officially eliminated from playoff contention. "It's just an unbelievable overall effort from every guy," Vaughn said. "As a coach you want to be proud of your team and what they're doing. (Friday's) effort typifies who we want to be." Vaughn may be specifically referring to Maurice Harkless, who had a season-high 25 points and nine rebounds while making 11 of 18 from the floor versus the Thunder. The forward, the 15th overall selection out of St. John's in last year's draft, had 12 points, three boards, three steals and two blocks against the Heat on March 6.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Kevin Durant has...RUSSELL MANIA!
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Dwyane Wade’s cousin shot and killed in Chicago

NFL tries to reduce kick returns, promptly causes more kick returns

San Francisco Giants inching closer to a record they really don’t want

Clint Dempsey undergoing testing for irregular heartbeat

Troubling details emerge from Jeremy Jeffress' DWI arrest

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Chargers would welcome Joey Bosa if he signed contract

Falcons rookie Keanu Neal needs surgery on knee

Jerry Jones unhappy with Ezekiel Elliott's dispensary visit

Texas Tech using fake Twitter accounts to track players

Nike creates custom Air Jordan shoes in tribute to Craig Sager

Browns wanted ‘second-round pick and then some’ for Gordon

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

Marshall’s first impression of Fitzpatrick: ‘He was terrible’

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Six worst quarterback situations in the NFL

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

A look at 2016 college football conference changes

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

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

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