Heating Up: Heat vs Thunder Reaction

Miami Heat Heating Up

Once again, the Miami Heat faced a shorthanded lottery team in the Oklahoma City Thunder. Miami was without Jimmy Butler and Victor Oladipo. Still, this was a game that favored Miami. The Thunder gave the Heat fits early in the game with their quickness and athleticism. Then, Miami turned it up a notch with a strong second quarter. Miami would never look back and dominated the rest of the way. With the win, Miami moves to 47-24 for the season. Here are four takeaways from Friday’s win over Oklahoma City.

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Aggressive Lowry

We all know how great of a floor general Kyle Lowry is. He does a great job of finding his teammates and orchestrating the offense. Since returning to the team, Lowry has struggled to get going on the offensive end. Before Friday’s game, Lowry had a total of 28 points in his last five starts, including a scoreless night against the Houston Rockets. This time Lowry got going on the offensive end. Usually, Lowry would hit the pitch-ahead pass to a teammate on the break. On Friday, he was the recipient. He also got going from beyond the arc. Hopefully, he continues this aggressiveness when the playoffs come. Lowry ended the night with 16 points.

Robinson’s Night

This was the night Duncan Robinson got going again. Throughout the year, Robinson has struggled at times to get going and stay on the floor. He usually finds himself in foul trouble early and has to sit down. Robinson gets himself in trouble when he’s not in the correct defensive stance and moving his feet laterally. However, Friday was different. He started off the night by taking advantage of the Thunder’s drop coverage. With more space, Robinson got going early by making three straight triples. Most importantly, he didn’t pick up his first foul until the third quarter. Overall, it was a good night for Robinson. He finished the night with 19 points.

Herro Scare

The Heat were already without Butler due to a high ankle sprain. In the third period, it looked like Tyler Herro would join him. While running a pick-and-roll, Herro threw a skip pass mid-air but ended up landing awkwardly on his ankle. He stood face first on the hardwood floor as everyone held their breath. The last thing the Heat needed was their best scorer out with the playoffs drawing near. Herro went to the locker room and the crowd waited for news on the ankle. After returning from the locker room, Herro was back on the Heat’s bench. Then, Herro made his way to the scorer’s table and was back in the game. He was able to finish the game and ended the night with 26 points.

Morris Playing Center

Markieff Morris played his third consecutive game since returning from injury. For the second straight time, he played as the backup center. Morris provides an element that has been missing from Miami, a mid-post option. When nothing is there on the perimeter or basket, the Heat can go down in the post to Morris. He has the ability to back down his defender and either hit a fadeaway or get to the basket. Pairing him alongside P.J. Tucker has also created more space for Herro to operate on the offensive end. The question now is whether Morris will stick as the Heat’s backup center or not.

Next Up: The Philadelphia 76ers. The game tips off at 7 pm eastern.

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