The Miami Heat edged out a hard-fought 109-107 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday afternoon. Miami fought off a fourth quarter Nets comeback thanks to a game-winning buzzer-beater from Center Bam Adebayo.
Injuries to Key Players
The Heat were without star forward Jimmy Butler, who suffered an ankle injury in Tuesday’s loss to the Phoenix Suns. Although Butler participated in the two most recent games, Coach Erik Spoelstra explained that the soreness in Butler’s ankle did not appear to be improving.
Brooklyn’s James Harden missed his 6th straight game due to a hamstring strain. Although no clear timeframe has been listed, the Nets are guiding Harden through a rehabilitation process before his return. After tallying eight points in just four minutes, star forward Kevin Durant exited Sunday’s game due to a thigh contusion. The two-time NBA champion recently made his return from a nagging hamstring injury on April 8th.
All-Star Bam Adebayo notched 21 points and 15 rebounds, including a game-winning 13-foot jump shot as time expired in the fourth quarter. Veteran guard Goran Dragic put together an impressive, well-rounded performance. The former NBA Most Improved Player scored 18 points and added seven assists and eight rebounds.
Brooklyn’s off-season signing of Landry Shamet has proved to be beneficial yet again. The former Clipper scored 30 points while shooting 10-for-15 from the field. Guard Kyrie Irving had a relatively unproductive night, shooting 6-for-19 while tallying 20 points and nine assists.
In his 16th season in the NBA, veteran Trevor Ariza has been excelling as of late. The former NBA Champion has notched double figures in the past five contests, with 15 points in Sunday’s win.
Center Dewayne Dedmon is establishing himself as a sound paint presence and rebounder. The former USC Trojan grabbed 10 rebounds (five offensive) and tallied 10 points (8/8 from the FT line) in 15 minutes of play.
Miami will take on the Houston Rockets to conclude a back-to-back set. The Rockets have struggled since losing former MVP’s James Harden and Russell Westbrook, falling to the absolute bottom of the Western Conference.