Turning It Around

After closing out a season-high six-game road trip by winning two straight for the first time in 2007-08, the Miami Heat are starting to turn things around following a poor start.

The Heat begin a stretch of playing five of their next six games at home Thursday night when they try to continue their success against the Washington Wizards.

Oddsmakers from SBG Global have made Miami -5.5point spread favorites (NBA Odds) for today’s game, the over/under has been set at 205 total points (Matchup). Our public betting information shows that 77% of bets for this game have been placed on Miami -5.5 (View NBA Bet Percentages).

Miami (6-15), holder of the worst record in the Eastern Conference, opened the trip with four consecutive losses before beating the Los Angeles Clippers 100-94 on Sunday and the Phoenix Suns 117-113 the next day.

"Going out West really helped us off the court as well as on the court," Heat guard Dwyane Wade said. "It helped us get to know each other a little more, helped us as men respect each other a little more, respect what each other does, and it's still coming. It's not there yet, but it's still coming, and I think these next six games coming up ... are going to show how close we have become."

Wade was instrumental in the last two games, scoring 64 points on 59.1 percent shooting (26-for-44) and adding 16 assists. Wade, who scored 10 of his 31 points in the final four minutes Monday, leads the team with 22.7 points and 6.4 assists per game after missing the first seven contests while recovering from offseason knee and shoulder surgeries.

He is averaging 22.8 points and 6.5 assists in 13 games against Washington - all victories.

Wade's outstanding play against the Wizards (11-10) has helped the Heat to a 15-1 record in the last 16 matchups, including eight consecutive victories at home. The lone loss came in a 106-95 road defeat last Dec. 15, but Miami responded by taking the next three meetings.

The Heat hope that success, combined with the momentum created from the end of the trip, can help them improve on a 2-6 home mark. They are being held to an average of 88.0 points in their six losses at AmericanAirlines Arena.

"It's not much fun getting off to the kind of start we got off to and I just hope that whatever other things that were going on have been lifted," Heat coach Pat Riley said. "There seems to be a little lighter air to the team. I think they've gotten through it and gotten closer together."

Miami is expected to have point guard Jason Williams back Thursday after he missed the last two games with a sprained ankle. Williams is averaging 14.2 points and 4.8 assists in his last five games against the Wizards.

Washington, which has won four of its last five, had six players score in double-digits Tuesday in a 102-88 win over Minnesota.

With Gilbert Arenas sidelined, Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison have taken on more of a role offensively and lead the Wizards with 22.8 and 21.4 points, respectively.

Jamison had 22 points and 13 rebounds, and Butler added 20 points and 10 boards Tuesday, but the biggest contribution might have been reserve point guard Roger Mason's season-high 17 points.

Mason is averaging 12.8 points in the last five contests, going 11-for-18 from 3-point range over that span.

"We understand that Caron, myself - it just can't be us. We need the rest of these guys to contribute on the offensive end," Jamison said. "We need everybody."

By: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us

More NBA Basketball Coverage from theSpread.com

 - NBA Basketball teams
 - NBA Basketball standings
 - NBA Basketball schedule
 - NBA Basketball scoreboard
 - NBA Basketball injuries
 - NBA Basketball matchups
 - NBA Basketball stats
 - NBA Basketball odds
 - NBA Basketball public betting chart
 - NBA Basketball news wire
 - NBA Basketball top stories
 - NBA Basketball trends
 - AccuScore NBA Basketball predictions
 - Expert NBA Basketball picks
 - Comments and discussion
 - Signup for theSpread.com daily newsletter
 - NBA Basketball Home

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail Updated NBA Finals Odds After a busy week with the NBA Draft taking place, which team improved their odds to win the 2018 NBA Finals?
Thumbnail Will Fox be a top-5 pick? With the 2017 NBA Drafttakes place later tonight. Where can we expect one of the top prospects, De’Aaron Fox, to land tonight?
Thumbnail Fultz to go to the 76ers? The Boston Celticshave traded out of the No. 1 pick. The Philadelphia 76ersnow hold the top pick once again. Is it a slam dunk who they will take in the NBA...
Thumbnail 2018 NBA Finals Odds After dominating the 2017 NBA Playoffs, will anyone keep the Golden State Warriors from winning the NBA Finals again...
Thumbnail Stephen Curry Game 5 Props Will Stephen Curry bounce back from a poor showing in Game 4 when the Golden State Warriors host the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 of the NBA Finals tonight at 9PM...

NBA Headlines

  • HAYWARD, Calif. (AP) Two-time NBA MVP Stephen Curry is set to test his golf game against the pros.
    The Web.com Tour announced Wednesday that Curry, who recently won his second NBA championshi...
  • NEW YORK (AP) Phil Jackson wanted to trade Carmelo Anthony and wouldn't rule out dealing Kristaps Porzingis.
    Turns out, Jackson is the one leaving.
    Jackson is out as New York Knicks pres...
  • NEW YORK (AP) Former NBA point guard Jason Williams will miss six to eight months after suffering a knee injury in the opening game of the Big3.
    Corey Maggette, also injured in the opening we...
  • HOUSTON (AP) A person familiar with the deal tells The Associated Press that the Houston Rockets have reached an agreement to acquire Los Angeles Clippers star Chris Paul.
    The Clippers will g...
  • TORONTO (AP) The Toronto Raptors have promoted Bobby Webster to general manager, making the 32-year-old assistant the youngest GM in the NBA.
    Webster will report to team president Masai Ujiri...

NBA Team Pages