Wow, what a shitty day for the Miami Heat
In what is one of the most painful examples of Murphy’s Law, anything that could go wrong, did go wrong for the Miami Heat in their matchup against the Boston Celtics. They got stomped at home 95-78, lost Kyle Lowry to injury in the second half, and also lost their spot as the east’s top seed.
It was one of those games where everything seemed to be all right… until it wasn’t. Miami opened the game with a 24-18 lead after the first quarter, made a couple of baskets to push their lead to 28-21 in the second quarter, and then imploded.
After Tyler Herro hit a shot with 10:50 left in the second quarter, the Celtics exploded and went on a 23-5 until the end of the second that flipped the advantage and gave Boston a 51-33 halftime lead. They outscored the Heat 33-9 overall in the second quarter, and basically just matched the Heat in scoring in the second half to take home the 17-point victory.
To add insult to injury, Kyle Lowry was also forced out of the game in the second half after an accidental collision with a falling Duncan Robinson, who came crashing into Lowry’s legs and knocked him over to cause the injury.
We talked a lot about how good the Heat looked prior to this game, and this was one of those contests that reminds you that anything can happen in the NBA. The Celtics didn’t escape unscathed, either, as Jaylen Brown, their leading scorer with 17 points, also left the game with tightness in his hamstring.
The events in Miami, coupled with the Philadelphia 76ers’ 109-98 victory over the Detroit Pistons, also caused the Heat to fall to the second seed. There are bad days, and there are horrible days. For Jimmy Butler and the Heat, it was a case of the latter.
The Jazz are rolling right now
The Utah Jazz maintained their top spot in the Western Conference with a 116-98 victory over the Atlanta Hawks. The Jazz, who were playing without Donovan Mitchell, used a 41-24 fourth quarter to blow what was an extremely close game wide open. Mitchell suffered an ankle injury against the Sacramento Kings the other day, and though he finished that game, it makes sense for Utah to want to avoid taking risks.
Mitchell’s absence didn’t seem to bother the Jazz much, either. Last season’s Sixth Man of the Year Jordan Clarkson again showed why he was deserving of the award with a 30-point game that saw him shoot 10 of 19 from the field, 4 of 10 from three and 6 of 7 free throws. He was buoyed by Bogdan Bogdanovic, who chipped in 23 points, and Joe Ingles, who had 19 points. Rudy Gobert had his customer double-double with 13 points and 15 rebounds, while Mike Conley had 13 points and 11 assists.
It was another concerning night from the field for Trae Young, who shot 8 of 20 overall and 0 of 4 from beyond the arc. He still finished with 21 points and 7 assists, but he’s really slumping to start the year. Clint Capela had 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Hawks, but they just didn’t have an answer in the fourth quarter. After Lou Williams opened the final stanza with a floater to make it a 76-75 Atlanta lead, Utah went on a tear and a 30-12 run to put the game out of reach at 105-88.