Toronto Raptors' O.G. Anunoby, right, and Scottie Barnes get a rebound away from Miami Heat's Kyle Lowry during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022, in Toronto. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP)

Heat Face Early Season Woes

The Miami Heat (7-8) have not looked like the team we know them to be to start the season. Of course, we are in the season’s infancy right now and there is no need to panic. Miami lost to the Toronto Raptors (9-7) on Wednesday 112-104. The Raptors would go on a run in the third quarter that Miami could not come back from.

Despite the early season woes, head coach Erik Spoelstra has been in this situation before and is equipped to turn this team around. Miami currently sits as the 10th seed in the Eastern Conference. It is safe to say that the Heat have not played up to their standards to start the season.

Loss to Raptors

In a back-and-forth game, Toronto was able to come back in a solid win for the Raptors. Almost halfway through the third quarter, Toronto was trailing by nine points. The Raptors would then go on a 21-0 run to put the Heat on their heels. This win for Toronto was led by Small Forward O.G Anunoby who scored a season-high 32 points combined with 10 rebounds.

The Heat would struggle badly in the rebound game throughout the game. The Raptors would outrebound the Heat 42-23. In second-chance points, Toronto would outscore Miami 26-5. That would show to be the biggest difference in this game.

One reason for the Heat struggling on Wednesday was a huge part to injuries. Miami would be without star center Bam Adebayo due to a bruised left knee. He is the Anchor in the paint for this team’s defense and the primary glass cleaner. The Heat showed how valuable he is to this team with Adebayo being out of the lineup.

Miami would also be without reigning NBA Sixth Man of the Year, Tyler Herro. He is a spark plug for this bench and can shoot at a high clip which has been crucial to Miami’s success in recent years.

So with key players being out for the Heat, this team can find themselves soon enough with these pieces. Coming into the game against Toronto the Heat were on a three-game winning streak and were looking to gain momentum. The Heat now fall to a 1-4 record away this season.

Heat Look to Wizards

The Heat will travel to Washington to take on the Wizards (8-7) on Friday. According to ESPN Analytics, the Wizards are favored to win this matchup. There are a few moving parts to this game that need to be considered.

The Heat need to find a way to win on the boards if Adebayo does not play. He is listed as day-to-day so his presence will be crucial for this team. Especially who is waiting for them on the Wizards.

Washington has had success in the paint this season led by center Kristaps Porzingis who has been one of the bright spots for this team. The Heat will have to find a way to limit him in this game and keep him off the boards as much as possible.

After winning four straight games, Washington lost to OKC on Wednesday in a 121-120 thriller. The Wizards have been playing good basketball lately and could present some troubles for Miami if they can’t win on the boards again.

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