NBA Basketball

Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Miami 30 31 28 14 103
Atlanta 31 31 33 23 118
4:30 PM PT5:30 PM MT6:30 PM CT7:30 PM ET23:30 GMT7:30 4:30 PM MST6:30 PM EST3:30 UAE (+1)00:3019:30 ET5:30 PM CT22:30 , April 23, 2021
State Farm Arena, Atlanta, Georgia  Attendance: 2,985

Recovering Heat take on hobbled Hawks in Atlanta

According to STATS
According to STATS

Miami Heat at Atlanta Hawks

  1. These teams split their two meetings this season over back-to-back games in Miami on February 28 and March 2. The Heat won the first matchup before the Hawks won the second, which was their first game of the season under Nate McMillan. These teams have split their 10 contests in Atlanta since 2015-16.
  2. After a 22-point win over the Rockets on Monday, the Heat beat the Spurs by 20 on Wednesday, giving them consecutive 20-point victories for the first time since February 1-4, 2017.
  3. The Hawks lost in overtime against New York on Wednesday, 137-127, where they allowed the Knicks to shoot 54.3 percent (19/35) from three, the highest single-game mark yielded by Atlanta this season.
  4. Jimmy Butler has 2054 points, 687 rebounds and 657 assists in his 100-game career in Miami. He is the third different player in the last 30 years with 2000-600-600 through 100 games with a single team (LeBron James with both the Heat and Lakers, Luka Doncic with the Mavs).
  5. Clint Capela, who notched his 12th straight double-double on Wednesday, surpassed 750 rebounds as a Hawk in only his 52nd game in Atlanta. Only one player in the last 30 years reached that figure with a single team in fewer games -- Dennis Rodman, who did so in 43 games as a Spur and 49 games as a Bull.
  6. Atlanta has the best record in the Eastern Conference since March 1, at 18-7. Over that same span, Miami leads the NBA in opponent scoring, allowing 104.0 points per game. The Hawks' 94 points in their win over the Heat on March 2 are their fewest in any game over that timeframe.
(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Injuries are a big part of the story in the lead-up to Friday's game between the Miami Heat (31-28) and the host Atlanta Hawks (32-27) in a battle between Eastern Conference playoff contenders.

Hawks guard Trae Young, who is ranked 14th in the NBA with a 25.3 scoring average, left Wednesday's 137-127 overtime loss to the New York Knicks due to a sprained left ankle suffered with 1:13 left in the third quarter.

X-rays were negative.

"God had my back," Young tweeted after the game. "Be back soon."

Young is unlikely to play against Miami, pending an MRI exam.

"It's not something you like ... but injuries are a part of it," Hawks coach Nate McMillan said. "Unfortunately, we've had a number of injuries throughout the season."

Indeed, the Hawks are in good position to make the playoffs for the first time since 2017, but they have five players besides Young on the injured list. The other injured Hawks are third-leading scorer De'Andre Hunter (knee), sixth-leading scorer Danilo Gallinari (foot), Kris Dunn (ankle), Cam Reddish (Achilles) and Tony Snell (ankle).

Young, Hunter (16.0 points), Gallinari (13.4) and Reddish (11.2) combine to average 65.9 points per game. Young also ranks third in the NBA in assists (9.6).

That's a lot of missing firepower, and the only Hawks player yet to miss a game this season is Kevin Huerter, who is averaging 12.2 points.

The other key Hawks are John Collins (17.8 points, 7.7 rebounds), Clint Capela (leads the NBA with 14.7 rebounds per game) and Bogdan Bogdanovic (14.5 scoring average, 41.3 percent from long distance).

Miami, which has won three straight games, trails fifth-place Atlanta by just one game in the East standings.

The Heat are coming off a 107-87 win over the host San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday. It was Miami's largest-ever margin of victory in San Antonio.

Three Heat stars -- Jimmy Butler (18 points, game-high 11 assists), Bam Adebayo (game-high 23 points) and Tyler Herro (22 points off the bench) -- played on Wednesday despite having nagging leg injuries as Miami started a quick two-game road trip that will end in Atlanta.

Butler had missed two straight games. Herro and Adebayo had missed one game each.

"Our leaders understand how important this road trip is," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "They wanted to set the tone for us.

"Bam was really angry about not playing (Miami's previous game, against the Houston Rockets). He really wanted to go out there and compete."

The Heat are 14-15 on the road this season. Atlanta is 16-11 at home.

Atlanta and Miami have split two games this season, with the Hawks serving as the road team both times.

In the first game, on Feb. 28, Miami held Young to just 15 points on 3-for-14 shooting, including 2-for-8 on three-pointers. Shortly after the game, the Hawks fired coach Lloyd Pierce.

Then, on March 2, McMillan made his debut as Hawks coach, leading Atlanta to a 94-80 win over Miami. Young was again held below his scoring average. He had 18 points but also a game-high 10 assists.

Atlanta, which won despite going minus-14 on turnover margin, is 18-7 since McMillan took over as coach.

--Field Level Media

Updated April 23, 2021

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