The Miami Heat suffered their worst home loss of the season against Indiana in November.
Looking for a measure of revenge against the Pacers, the Heat will go for their seventh straight victory Tuesday night at home when they face an Indiana team trying to improve to 5-0 under interim coach Frank Vogel.
Miami (37-14) continues to get healthier and has won six straight after losing five of its previous six. The Heat are coming off a 97-79 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday after winning by 12 at Charlotte two nights earlier.
“First of all, we’re healthy,” Dwyane Wade(notes) said when asked the reason for the winning streak. “Not healthy as in all 100 percent, but healthy as in we have all of our bodies … and we’re able to play with different lineups and the things we envisioned.”
Wade, who has been dealing with wrist and back problems lately, had 28 points, eight rebounds and eight assists Sunday while Chris Bosh(notes) added 16 points and seven rebounds. LeBron James(notes) was held to a season-low 12 points, but it didn’t seem to matter as Miami limited the Clippers to 32.5 percent shooting.
After scoring a season-high 51 points in a win over Orlando on Thursday, James has been held to 31 in the last two games. He scored eight of his points Sunday in the first half.
“I’m all about team wins. We had 30-plus points off the bench,” James said. “Wins take care of themselves and that’s all that matters to me.”
With the second-best record in the Eastern Conference behind Boston, which Miami faces Sunday, the Heat are more cohesive than when they faced Indiana on Nov. 22. The Heat’s 93-77 loss - their biggest of the season at home - dropped them to 8-6.
Wade was held to three points on 1-of-13 shooting in the defeat, which snapped Miami’s four-game winning streak in the series.
The Heat have been sharp defensively and they’ll look to stay that way against the Pacers. Miami has held five of its last nine opponents under 94 points, including three to 90 or fewer.
However, Indiana (21-27) comes in looking to extend its own winning streak and has been hot offensively since Vogel replaced Jim O’Brien on Jan. 30. The Pacers have won a season-high four in a row, including a 105-86 win over New Jersey on Saturday.
The Pacers have averaged 106.5 points in their four games under Vogel. Rebounding seems to be a big difference under the new coach with the team averaging 10.0 more boards over the last four contests than in the previous eight - a 1-7 stretch.
“I think everyone is a little more loose now and we’re doing different things,” forward Josh McRoberts(notes) said. “I have a lot of respect for coach O’Brien, but maybe sometimes change loosens things up. We now have a little bit more of a rotation and that’s working.”
The Pacers haven’t won five in a row since March 19-26.