NBA PREVIEWS |

Miami Heat vs. Toronto Raptors Preview and Predictions 12-03-2019


The Toronto Raptors are undefeated at home and will try to make it 10 in a row to start the season in front of their own fans when they host the Miami Heat on Tuesday. The Raptors breezed to a 130-110 win over Utah on Sunday to begin a three-game homestand and won their last five at home by an average of 21 points.

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Toronto held a 40-point lead at the half on Sunday - a franchise record - and handed out 21 assists on 29 field goals in the first 24 minutes before letting off the gas a bit after the break. "Shots were going in, defense was tough each possession ... and yeah, those things feed each other," Raptors coach Nick Nurse told reporters. "The defense feeds the offense." The Heat are undefeated at home as well and pulled above .500 on the road by holding off the Brooklyn Nets in a 109-106 triumph on Sunday. "I like this win, because, one, it's on the road," Miami swingman Jimmy Butler told reporters. "But I think we finally showed ourselves what we're capable of when we guard. When we don't make shots the way that we normally make shots, there's still a way to win, and we have to find that way to win. Tonight was a prime example of it."

TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, FS Sun (Miami), Sportsnet One (Toronto)

ABOUT THE HEAT (14-5): Miami finished Sunday's game on a 10-0 run, which included five free throws from Butler to cap off a 20-point night. "I just continually play in the way that I take what the game gives me," Butler told reporters. "I know whenever the fourth quarter rolls around, it may be my time to take some good shots, some bad shots, get to the line. But I think that my teammates, my coaches, the organization, they have a lot of trust in me to be able to do that." The Heat continue to get strong performances from center Bam Adebayo, who collected 17 points and 16 rebounds on Sunday for his third double-double in the last four games.

ABOUT THE RAPTORS (15-4): Toronto star Pascal Siakam slumped to 10 points on 4-of-22 shooting in a 90-83 win at Orlando on Friday but bounced back against the Jazz, scoring 35 points on 14-of-22 shooting - including 5-of-9 from beyond the arc. Siakam was part of a 19-of-36 effort from beyond the arc for the Raptors as Fred VanVleet (5-of-7) and Marc Gasol (3-of-5) each got hot. Gasol finished with 11 points on 4-of-8 shooting, snapping a streak of 11 straight games in which he failed to score in double figures.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Raptors PF Serge Ibaka (ankle) returned from a 10-game absence on Sunday and scored 13 points in 21 minutes off the bench.

2. Miami rookie SG Kendrick Nunn is 14-of-42 from the floor over the last three games.

3. Toronto took each of the four meetings last season and five of the last six in the series.

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Air Canada Centre
Toronto, Ontario, CAN.
Capacity: 19,800

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Last Injuries

Toronto Raptors

  • Stanley Johnson

    Groin
    Late Dec | out

    Johnson has a stress reaction in his left groin and is expected to be out until at least the end of December.

  • Fred VanVleet

    Knee
    Ques Mon | questionable

    VanVleet has sat out the last three games due to a right knee contusion, and it is unclear if he will be available for Monday's tilt versus the Cavaliers.

  • Patrick McCaw

    Knee
    Prob Wed | probable

    McCaw is recovering from arthroscopic surgery to remove a benign mass on the back of his left knee. He is expected to return to action Wednesday versus the Clippers.

  • Kyle Lowry

    Thumb
    Prob Tues | probable

    Lowry has been recovering from a fracture of the distal phalanx in his left thumb. He is progressing in his recovery and is expected to return to action Tuesday against the Heat.

  • Serge Ibaka

    Ankle
    Prob Sun | probable

    Ibaka suffered a sprained right ankle, but he is projected to return against the Jazz on Sunday.

  • Dewan Hernandez

    Thumb
    Prob Sun | probable

    Hernandez sat out his fourth straight game due to a sprained right thumb, but he is likely to draw back into the lineup Sunday versus the Jazz.

Miami Heat

  • Goran Dragic

    Groin
    Out indefinitely | out

    Dragic is idle due to a right groin strain. A timetable for return has yet to be established.

  • James Johnson

    Illness
    Ques Mon | questionable

    Johnson has been absent from the lineup during the previous three games due to an illness. It remains to be seen if he will face the Grizzles on Monday.

  • Dion Waiters

    Suspension
    Elig Dec 27 | out

    Waiters has been suspended six games for failing to adhere to team policies, violating team rules and continued insubordination. He is likely to be reinstated in time for Dec. 27 versus the Pacers.

  • Justise Winslow

    Back
    Ques Mon | questionable

    Winslow has sat out the last five games with a lower-back strain, and it is unclear if he will suit up against the Grizzlies on Monday.

  • Tyler Herro

    Illness
    Prob Fri | probable

    Herro is ailing from an illness, but it is likely he will take the court against the Lakers on Friday.

  • KZ Okpala

    Achilles
    Prob Tues | probable

    Okpala is sidelined due to a left Achilles strain but is likely to return against the Hawks on Tuesday.

  • Derrick Jones Jr.

    Illness
    Prob Tues | probable

    Jones Jr. is ailing from a stomach illness, but he is projected to be a participant in Tuesday's tilt against the Hawks.

  • Bam Adebayo

    Groin
    Prob Tues | probable

    Adebayo has a right groin contusion, but it is likely that he will take part in Tuesday's clash with the Hawks.