The Miami Heat will look to record a ninth straight win in their home state on Saturday night when they visit the Orlando Magic.
The Heat recorded eight of those victories in Miami, including a 110-105 decision against the Magic on Jan. 27.
Jimmy Butler, who scored 29 points in that game, converted an alley-oop pass from Gabe Vincent with three-tenths of a second remaining in the Heat’s 97-95 win over the visiting Houston Rockets on Friday.
Butler scored two points in each of the first three quarters before contributing 10 of the Heat’s final 13 points in the victory.
“Any way to get a win,” Miami guard Tyler Herro told Bally Sports Sun. “At this point in the season, it’s all about wins for us. Any way we’ll take it, any way we can get one. We fought to the end literally.”
Herro collected 31 points, nine rebounds and eight assists on Friday. He made 5 of 10 attempts from beyond the arc, including a corner 3-pointer with 24 seconds left to give Miami a 93-91 lead.
Bam Adebayo recorded 20 points and nine rebounds versus the Rockets. He had 20 points, seven assists and six boards in the previous meeting with Orlando.
Vincent was inserted into the Heat’s starting lineup on Friday in place of Kyle Lowry, who has missed three straight games due to left knee soreness. Lowry also will sit out the Saturday game.
Injuries aside, Miami elected to stand pat at the NBA’s trade deadline. Coach Erik Spoelstra said the players didn’t appear fazed by the organization’s lack of movement during the Friday morning shootaround.
“I’m sure it was on some of the guys’ minds, and that’s normal,” Spoelstra said, per the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “And because of the flurry of activity that you’re seeing around the league, it would have to put a thought in your mind. But I think there was a lot of clarity this morning.”
Orlando enters the Saturday clash with three wins in its past four games, including a 115-104 decision against the Western Conference-leading Denver Nuggets on Thursday.
Wendell Carter Jr. scored 19 points and reserve Cole Anthony collected 17 points, seven rebounds and seven assists versus the Nuggets.
Anthony wasn’t shy about applauding the efforts of the Magic’s bench players, who combined for 56 points. Reserve big man Bol Bol matched Anthony with 17 points.
“I can speak for that second unit that we’ve got. I think we’re just starting to figure it out,” Anthony said. “It’s been shifted around a bunch. We’ve kind of had some dudes in and some dudes out, but I think we finally have gotten a steady stream of games together, and I think we’re starting to figure it out.
“It’s a game of runs. Yeah, we took that first punch, and we threw like six back.”
Anthony joined Franz Wagner and rookie Paolo Banchero in scoring 19 points apiece during the previous meeting with Miami.
Orlando’s Gary Harris is listed as questionable for the Saturday game because of right adductor soreness. He sat out on Thursday due to the injury.
–Field Level Media