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Sixers vs. Heat Preview: Miami Days Counting

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We will not reference a certain Will Smith song.

Mike Ehrmann

One of the interesting qualities of the NBA is that sometimes you'll get two teams in the same game that find it to be contrary to their interests to give a crap.

The Miami Heat, locked into the No. 1 spot in the conference, have rested LeBron James and Dwyane Wade for the past three games, while the Sixers have been so thoroughly buried that they'd be better off losing to improve their draft pick than winning to put off the inevitable. But we've been over this.

LeBron and Wade are likely to sit again tonight, because the Heat are resting their two biggest stars for an anticipated deep playoff run. The Sixers are going to run plays for Damien Wilkins, because they suck.

But the Sixers might be able to pick off an under-strength version of the NBA's best team to keep their faint playoff hopes alive. The Sixers find themselves five games behind Milwaukee with seven to play, and now that they're 6-4 in their last 10 games, they could be said ( in relative terms at least) to be on something of a hot streak.

Some burning questions in advance of tonight's game:

  • Will Spencer Hawes and Chris Bosh have some sort of gentleman's agreement to play center no closer to the rim than 15 feet?
  • Can Jrue Holiday, who's hit only five of his last 38 field goal attempts and is 11-for-55 in the past three games, take advantage of what is, on paper, the Sixers' only full-strength matchup advantage? Holiday, by the way, hasn't shot over 50 percent from the floor since March 2 and hasn't been more than one shot over the break-even point since he went 8-for-11 the last time the Sixers visited Miami on Feb. 23.
  • The Heat are the best show in Miami, but a lot of people might put in a vote for Dexter. Let's talk about Dexter Morgan's breakfast: ham (at least I assume that's ham, which, for some reason, he cooks in a skillet), eggs (for which I give him tons of credit for eating with a dash of hot sauce), coffee (which he brews in a French press) and what looks like a grapefruit. That's a ton of food preparation, before work, on a morning where the first two things that happen to him are a mosquito bite and a shaving cut. Either of those would ruin my day. Who does breakfast like that?
  • Mike Miller is apparently the big perimeter guy for Miami while LeBron and Wade are on sabbatical. We've let Miller get away with that unfortunate late-90s soccer player headband look for too long. Mike, I know you went to the University of Florida, which means you're probably not that bright. But tell the barber that you're sick of looking like an asshole.

Tip-off is at 7:30 EDT on ESPN.