Miami Heat
Philadelphia 76ers
League : NBA

Philadelphia 76ers vs Miami Heat Prediction & Preview



Image licensed from USA Today Sports



The Miami Heat travel to take on the Philadelphia 76ers in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Miami owns a comfortable 2-0 lead in the series after successive victories on their home floor capped by a decisive 119-103 win in Game 2. Bam Adebayo was great dropping 23 on 7/11 shooting from the field. With the series now shifting to Philadephia, the reeling Sixers desperately need a win or they risk falling into an insurmountable hole. Tip-off is set for 7 PM EST.


Heat Look to Press Advantage

After cruising to relatively routine wins in Games 1 and 2, Miami comes into Game 3 playing with house money. All the pressure will be on the 76ers Friday night allowing the Heat to play their aggressive and loose brand of basketball as they look for the knockout punch. After a poor shooting effort in the opener the Heat responded in Game 2 by peppering shots from all over the field en route to averaging better than 51% from the field including 48% from beyond the arc. The Heat have hammered the glass outrebounding Philly by ten in both of the first two games. If they can control the glass again in this one there's little reason to suspect we will see a different outcome.



Miami has relied on solid contributions from a number of its stars in this series so far. Tyler Herro came up big with 25 points in Game 1, while Bam Adebayo played really efficiently in Game 2. With the versatile Jimmy Butler a constant threat, and Victor Olidipo contributing big minutes and scoring off the bench, this is a deep roster.


Sixers Struggling From Long Range

An early theme through the first two games of this series has been Philadelphia's putrid shooting from beyond the arc. After shooting a dismal 17.5% in Game 1 on 6/34 the 76ers showed only a marginal improvement in Game 2 going 8/30 which is still less than 27%. The lack of a threat from the outside has made it really difficult to consistently come away with positive possessions and this is only exacerbated by the fact that Miami has owned a substantial advantage on the glass in each game, limiting second-chance opportunities for Philly. Embiid's presence has been sorely missed as the Sixers have been limited to just 14 offensive boards through the first two games.




With Joel Embiid likely out again in Game 3 and likely far from 100% the rest of the way, the Sixers will need a big-time effort from the rest of the supporting cast. Tyrese Maxey did his part with a massive 34-point effort in Game 2. For Philadelphia to have any realistic shot they likely need James Harden to revert back to his old MVP form. His average of 18 points per game on 39% shooting through the first two games is simply not enough.

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