Miami Heat (8-3) Need to Keep Feasting on Bottom Feeders

The Miami Heat (8-3) are sitting pretty in a dreadful Eastern Conference where only six teams have winning records so far.

After two closer than expected wins against Detroit and Cleveland, Miami looks to get healthy against more subpar opponents in the coming days.

Beginning Saturday when they meet the 3-8 New Orleans Pelicans, the Heat will only face two teams with winning records to close out November.

So far the Heat have taken care of business when they should, as five of their eight wins are against sub .500 teams.

Miami has only lost to the Timberwolves, Nuggets, and Lakers who are a combined 24-8 this season.

While also taking care of business on the road at Milwaukee (8-3) and Phoenix (7-4) and blowing out the 8-3 Rockets 129-100 at home.

The Heat have a quick two game home stand which kicks off against the 3-8 Pelicans who are near the bottom out West without Anthony Davis and top pick Zion Williamson.

New Orleans is still scoring at an impressive clip (118.4 PPG, 3rd) but are atrocious on the other end, giving up the most points in the NBA at 122.8 per game.

Like Miami, New Orleans also struggles with turnovers giving it up over 17 times per contest, while allowing teams to shoot 47.4% from the field (24th in the NBA).

Miami is a middle of the pack scoring offense but so far excelling on defense, this should continue against New Orleans.

To close out the home set the Heat will host Cleveland, whom they just dispatched 108-97 on Thursday.

The Cavaliers are polar opposites of the Pelicans, Cleveland is tied for 25th in the NBA scoring just 105.3PPG, but allows a respectable 107.1 PPG which is 11th league-wide.

Cleveland has scored 97 or fewer points in four out of 11 games (all losses) and should again struggle with an elite Heat defensive unit.

Miami will then travel to Chicago to kick off a stretch where they play six out of eight games on the road. Jimmy Butler will face his former Bulls team for the first time in a Heat uniform, Butler spent the first six seasons of his career in Chicago.

Chicago (4-8) has lost seven of ten games and have allowed the most points off of turnovers in the NBA. If Miami can play a clean offensive game that should be a recipe for a nice road win. The Bulls are the 4th worst shooting team in the league at 43.3%, playing right into Miami’s hands.

Things get tougher after that as the Heat will visit the other team in Butler’s past, the Philadelphia 76ers. This rivalry has become more contentious and now that Josh Richardson is in Philly it makes it even more interesting.

You know Butler and the Heat circled this game on the calendar.

Miami must keep cleaning up on lesser opponents which has been an issue in seasons past, all wins count whether in November or May and the Heat must stockpile as the schedule becomes more difficult in the second half of the season.

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