Coverage Begins at 1:00 pm ET
Miami: 36-32 (12-21 road)
Margin: -0.2 ppg (-0.9 last 25%)
Last 10: 5-5
Pistons: 34-24 (18-17 home)
Margin: -0.3 (-0.1 last 25%)
Last 10: 5-5
With the Pistons staring at the 7th seed, and a potential first round date with Boston, it is no longer acceptable to keep losing games. Still, these Sunday morning salvos have been a killer.
As far as the Heat, the only thing that matters is whether Wade plays. If he doesn't, this is the worst team in the NBA. If he does, the sky's the limit. He is listed as a game time decision with a strained hip, but with Miami now four games behind Atlanta, I wouldn't be surprised if they give him rest whenever possible.
Jermaine O'Neal has been a bit of a non-starter for Miami, which means Toronto has now participated in two major trades whereby both teams involved failed to improve. That's hard to do. Michael Beasley has been a disappointment, and the team can't rebound generally. So yeah, it's pretty much Wade. He's so great for basketball.
This doesn't exactly have the flair of the EC finals matchups a couple years back, does it?
Keys for Detroit
Stop the three pointer: If Miami wins without Wade, it will bebecause guys like Daequan Cook and Jamario Moon got hot from behind the three point stripe.
On the flip side: The Heat defend the three point shot very poorly, and the Pistons have had some success for deep lately.
Be ready for Wade: It's national TV, and he has to know that the Pistons don't do Sundays. Visions of ringing up 70 are probably dancing in his head. Stop him with a good hard foul.
Question of the Game
Is Will Bynum for real? I suspect he is succeeding by catching teams unawares, but if he can produce at this level, he'll be a dominating sixth man for years to come.