Winderman’s view: No comfort zone for Heat, even after 21-point lead, just a needed win

Observations and other notes of interest from Wednesday night’s 113-105 victory over the Washington Wizards:

– No, no easy explanation for these blown leads.

– Like the 21-point one the Heat held early in the third quarter.

– But this is what injury attrition does.

– It not only wears you down over the course of a schedule.

– It wears you down during a game.

– Example A: At one stage in the third quarter, the Heat were fielding a lineup of Dewayne Dedmon, Caleb Martin, Haywood Highsmith, Jamal Cain and Gabe Vincent.

– In a game they had to win.

– And found a way to win.

– As it was, the Heat not only needed the Wizards, they needed these Wizards.

– A team on Wednesday night lacking Bradley Beal, Rudy Hachimura and Monte Morris.

– That more than leveled the playing field, particularly on a night the Heat had Tyler Herro back.

– To put into perspective how much was missing from Wednesday’s mix, consider that the night’s best lineup might have been one that was made up of the missing.

– Jimmy Butler. Beal. Hachimura. Morris. And Max Strus.

– And still for the Heat, yet another fight to the finish.

– The question now is who makes it back for Friday’s rematch on the Heat’s court.

– And, of course, whether Kyle Lowry will run out of gas.

– He was the engine, and everything else, for the Heat on Wednesday night when they were at their best.

– As he has been all season.

– This comeback clearly will take time for Tyler Herro.

– Just as it eventually will for Jimmy Butler.

– All of that with road games against the Hawks, Celtics, Celtics and Grizzlies to follow after Friday’s against the Wizards.

– After missing eight games with a sprained left ankle, Herro was back in the starting lineup.

– Butler missed his fourth consecutive game with knee soreness.

– So with Strus missing his first game of the season, due to a shoulder injury, the Heat again shifted Caleb Martin to small forward.

– The remainder of the starting lineup was rounded out by Lowry, Bam Adebayo and Nikola Jovic.

– With his second rebound, Adebayo reached 3,000 for his career.

– The Wizards opened with Jordan Goodwin, Corey Kispert, Deni Avdija, Kyle Kuzma and Kristaps Porziņģis.

– Herro’s second 3-point attempt was the 1,100th of his career.

– The return of Herro was heartening, with coach Erik Spoelstra hopeful of more soon.

– “Everybody that’s not [back] is getting better,” Spoelstra said, “they’re getting healthier and we’re ready to go.”

– Vincent, back from his knee pain, played as the Heat’s first reserve.

– With Highsmith following next.

– And then Dedmon.

– With Jamal Cain making it nine deep after Herro was called for a third foul 31 seconds into the second period.

– Cain was active to the point that he had seven second-quarter rebounds, a period when the Wizards had only nine as a team.

– Highsmith’s first 3-point attempt was the 50th of his career.

– Spoelstra said the in-and-out nature of the rotration has led to evolving game plans.

– “There’ll be …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – Sports


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