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House of the champs: on the road in Miami

Essentials

  • Teams: Detroit Pistons (16-26) at Miami Heat (27-12)
  • Date: January 25, 2013
  • Time: 7:30 p.m.
  • Television: FSD

What to look for

After losing a tough contest in Chicago Wednesday night, the Detroit Pistons will be in Miami tonight to take on a Heat team that they convincingly defeated at the Palace of Auburn Hills on December 28th.

In that contest, the Pistons scored 109 points on 58.1 percent field goal shooting thanks to their performance on both the interior and perimeter. Indeed, Detroit managed 48 points in the paint and also converted an astonishing 12-of-19 shots from 3-point range, with Charlie Villanueva and Austin Daye combining to go six-of-seven from downtown.

The Heat were in somewhat of a funk at the time and played without the services of Dwyane Wade.

This time around, Miami is playing a little better basketball, as evidenced by their back-to-back wins in Golden State and Los Angeles (Lakers) where they held their opponents to 75 and 90 points respectively.

But again, they are still prone to some lackadaisical efforts, which occurred on Wednesday night at home, when they needed overtime to dispatch the Toronto Raptors.

Nonetheless, with Dwyane Wade returning to the lineup tonight, expect this contest to be played differently in comparison to the last time both teams squared off.

LeBron James and Chris Bosh dropped 63 points on 26-for-39 field goal shooting in the first tilt, but received little help from their supporting cast.

Wade’s presence will undoubtedly reduce the scoring burden for both James and Bosh given his ability to put up points on the board, which allows the team to better balance out the point production. NBA.com’s advanced stats tool tells us that LeBron James produces 23 points and seven assists per 36 minutes on 55.8 percent shooting with Wade playing alongside him, whereas when the Marquette product is on the bench, he manufactures 28.5 points and 5.9 assists per 36 minutes on 53.6 percent field goal shooting.

It’s also worth noting that Miami is a better shooting team with the former Finals MVP on the court because they generate more free throw attempts, finish much better around the basket and convert a slightly higher share of their above the break 3-point shots per NBA.com’s advanced stats tool.

Thus, it stands to reason that Detroit won’t be able to replicate the exact same defensive game plan they used in late December against Miami because the variables are much more different now with Wade weaving through defenders off the dribble to get to the rim.

The Heat will find a balance between attacking the paint and setting up their shooters for long-range shooters where they are converting 38.8 percent from downtown (third best mark in NBA).

So how does Detroit win this game?

They have to absolutely win two statistical categories: rebounding and turnovers.

Much has been made of the Heat’s rebounding deficiencies, but the team still has the best record in the Eastern Conference and a huge part of that stems from their at times suffocating defense that forces turnovers and permits them to get out in transition for easy baskets.

The defending champions make up for their lack of size with speed, quickness and an ability to force miscues. Consequently, if Detroit can produce positive results in both areas, they should have a terrific chance of pulling out the contest on the road.

Read about the Heat

Heat Index.

Statistical support provided by NBA.com.

21 Comments

  • Jan 25, 20138:13 pm
    by Lorenzo

    Reply

    Anyone know why Slava is inactive tonight? 

  • Jan 25, 20138:38 pm
    by Jinzzy

    Reply

    give moose the ball on the post FRANK shh

  • Jan 25, 20139:04 pm
    by Vic

    Reply

    That was pretty disrespectful what they did to the Pistons in that 2nd quarter. They tried to put Detroit back in its place. Pistons need a player with poise that can control the pace of the game when their talent level is a minus vs the competition

  • Jan 25, 20139:34 pm
    by Vic

    Reply

    IT’S A STICKUP! Twice in a row on Dwade now that’s disrespectful 

    • Jan 25, 20139:37 pm
      by theicon77

      Reply

      That was crazy!!

  • Jan 25, 20139:35 pm
    by Murphy

    Reply

    Well, Stuckey isn’t the answer.  A shooting guard who can’t shoot (less than 30 % from 3 and less than everyone else in FG% in general) and can’t finish in the paint.  He absolutely killed us on Wednesday in the 4th and now tonight in the 2nd Qtr.  What SG do you know misses so many shots (2 freethrows in a row to start our downward spiral)?  It’s rediculous!  Frank insists on playing him so it’s not his fault, I guess.  Where are our 3 rookies that have been sitting the bench all season? 

  • Jan 25, 20139:38 pm
    by Murphy

    Reply

    Stuck is stuck.  He was 0-forever from 3 last night (don’t know why he’s still allowed to shoot 3′s) and in 26 minutes he had exactly zero rebounds.  Without looking, I can guess Will had more. He doesn’t do anything except sink us.  We have the ballers, they’re just not being utilizied correctly.  AT ALL.

    • Jan 25, 20139:42 pm
      by Murphy

      Reply

      Sorry, Stuck was 0-4 from 3 last night.  And he has 4 points in 24 minutes so far tonight.  What, exactly, is he doing out there?

  • Jan 25, 20139:43 pm
    by Mone

    Reply

    Why the hell is Frank not using our two bigs to take advantage of Miami’s small big man???

    Bynum
    Stuckey
    Daye
    Monroe
    Drummond

    Played well together, why didn’t he ride that lineup?? 

  • Jan 25, 20139:52 pm
    by Jayknowsball

    Reply

    I’m just glad JJ and English got to get some PT even if it was garbage mins….there was no reason for the to glued to the bench like that

  • Jan 25, 20139:56 pm
    by Desolation Row

    Reply

    The depressing part is how much better Frank has been than the last two coaches…. ugh…. let’s start the weekend. 

    • Jan 25, 201310:11 pm
      by ZekeKhaseli

      Reply

      Remember. Frank has better material in the players

  • Jan 25, 201310:07 pm
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    Okay We all know the Heat is the better team….

    and you have too be on point to beat them…

    Greg was dominating and Heat had no answers…..But Greg and Knight sat out way too long…During the Heats run in the 2nd qrt…

    But im glad I was there to see Dre pick Wade Twice….. it kinda made me not even care…. we lost by 20pts…

    Drummond need to dunk in traffic …he thinks too much

     

    • Jan 25, 201310:12 pm
      by ZekeKhaseli

      Reply

      He think too much because Frank doesnt free him enough

  • Jan 25, 201310:15 pm
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    Drummond offensively should be soo much further ahead than where he is right now… I now believe Frank is hurting his development…

     

  • Jan 25, 201310:39 pm
    by Scott Free

    Reply

    People don’t block Lebron with ‘upside’ or strip Wade with ‘potential.’  There remains absolutely NO excuse not to start Drummond.  

  • Jan 25, 201311:28 pm
    by Tiko

    Reply

    We need Shabazz, Chauncey, and Mayo 
    and we need to rid ourselves of Stuckey  

  • Jan 25, 201311:32 pm
    by Lake Side Live

    Reply

    Anyone know what Drummond or the Pistons have to do to get into the Olajwon camp for bigs?  Because I Hate Frank is correct with more decisive actions he could be killing it getting is own shot offensively.  That Joel Anthony Block was sad but I watch it a thousand times to see Dre’s two steals of Wade once more.

    Like Greg Kelser said bigs that make decisive moves with the ball get results, Moose was the same way he holds onto it gets a turnover tonight made his move to the basket as soon as he was handling had huge game tonight, same thing applies to Drummond.  

  • Jan 26, 201312:34 am
    by Javell

    Reply

    Greg needs to play PF he domonates there… Its hard for him when going up with centers lenth 

  • Jan 26, 201312:53 am
    by Jayknowsball

    Reply

    ^^ agreed

  • Aug 14, 20133:49 pm
    by Legal Help

    Reply

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