Saturday night saw the Miami Heat drop their fourth straight game, losing 108-103 to the 14th place Charlotte Hornets. Miami’s comeback effort came up just short, as they were unable to claw back from being down as many as 22 points.
Newly-acquired Heat forward Kevin Love put together a solid performance in Charlotte, after failing to score in his debut Friday, against the Milwaukee Bucks. Love totaled 13 points and 13 rebounds, while shooting 4-11 from the floor and 3-9 from deep.
After watching his team top Miami, Hornets head coach Steve Clifford was asked about his team’s defense. Clifford responded by saying his team caught a break and citing some of the Heat’s missed shots, including one of Love’s failed attempts from beyond the arc.
“They missed some shots. The Kevin Love open three there was a big one, you know, when we didn’t block out on the free throw. He’s going to make those, I mean he has his whole career,” he told reporters. “So, some nights the basketball gods are with you, but neither team shot the ball particularly well.”
Bucks Coach Praises Bam Adebayo After Win Over Heat
Just a day prior to losing to Charlotte, the Heat suffered a blowout 128-99 defeat to the Bucks in Milwaukee.
After his team’s strong win over Miami, Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer was asked about Bam Adebayo, the Heat’s only All-Star this season.
“I think he’s clearly more aggressive, he’s looking to attack, he’s looking to drive. But, (he takes) a lot of tough twos, a lot of shots around the elbows,” Coach Bud told reporters. “He’s really grown as a scorer, we’ve got to figure out if we can make it harder on him. But, to stay between him and the basket, to keep him off the offensive boards things like that, keep him off the free throw line mostly, those were some positives for defending Adebayo.”
Budenholzer’s team was able to limit Adebayo to just 18 points on 17 shots.
Aside from focusing on the star center, Milwaukee’s coach highlighted that battling through the large amount of screens that the Heat set, was a key part of the gameplan.
“There’s so many screens when you play against the Heat, whether it be on-ball or off-ball,” he said. “You’ve got to be committed, you have to be hard to screen, you got to keep coming, you got to be disciplined. You know, overall, a lot of good possessions for the group defensively, and that’s what we have to keep doing.”
Cody Zeller Details Debut With Heat
Not only was the February 24 loss to Milwaukee Love’s first game as a member of the Heat, it was also Cody Zeller‘s debut for Miami.
Zeller tallied 10 points and secured 4 rebounds in 16 minutes on Friday.
He spoke after the loss, explaining to the media that he felt comfortable on the floor.
“Coach has been really clear [about roles],” Zeller said via the Miami Herald. “He knew that I was going to come in and play kind of in short spurts until I get my legs back underneath me…. I felt good individually. Not the result you want as a team.”