The Heat will try to put together back-to-back wins when they visit the Trail Blazers. It won’t be easy for a Heat team that no longer has LeBron James to win on the road against the Trail Blazers, who own the second-best record in the Western Conference and have won 15 of 17 at home. The Heat have had three days off before this game and they have been getting healthy though.
Miami is coming off Sunday’s 88-84 win over a Brooklyn team that had won six of seven; however, they haven’t won consecutive games since beating Orlando and Charlotte on November 22 and 23.
Chris Bosh had his best performance in four games after missing eight with a sore calf, scoring 26 points on 10 of 16 shooting against the Nets to help the Heat snap a four-game losing streak. Additionally, Chris Andersen came back last month after an extended absence and Danny Granger recently returned after battling injuries. Hassan Whiteside, who signed with Miami on November 24, has stepped up, taking advantage of his opportunity with 24 points, 16 rebounds and seven blocks in the last two games.
Dwyane Wade missed the last meeting with the Trail Blazers on March 24, when Chris Bosh blocked Damian Lillard’s layup on the final play to preserve the Heat’s 93-91 victory. Bosh capped a 37-point night with a three-pointer with 0.5 seconds left when the Heat last visited Portland on December 29, 2013 to give his team a 108-107 win with LeBron James sidelined by injury. Bosh averaged 30.5 points on 76.5 percent shooting in two matchups with the Trail Blazers in the previous season.
Keeping Damian Lillard in check will be a big key to this game for the Heat. Lillard had 39 points and the go-ahead basket with 36 seconds left in Monday’s 98-94 win over the Lakers. He was limited to 16 points two nights earlier in a loss to the Hawks but he has scored more than 25 points six times, all wins, in Portland’s last 10 games. That stretch has included three efforts of at least 39 points.