Seeking their first back-to-back wins of the season, the Warriors open a five-game road trip Friday night in Miami against a Heat team off to a surprisingly good start.
Pregame coverage on NBC Bay Area begins at 4 o'clock, with tipoff from American Airlines Arena scheduled for 5:10.
Bolstered by the return of Draymond Green after a three-game absence with left heel soreness, the Warriors (4-15) are coming off a 14-point home win over the Chicago Bulls. They're hoping to avoid the franchise's worst 20-game start since the 1999-00 Warriors started 4-16.
Even after adding Jimmy Butler in the offseason, Miami (12-5) widely was perceived as no better than a second-tier playoff team in the Eastern Conference. The Heat still might end up there, but they enter the weekend with the fourth-best record in the East and the eighth-best mark in the NBA.
F Eric Paschall
F Draymond Green
C Willie Cauley-Stein
G Glenn Robinson III
G Alec Burks
F Jimmy Butler
F Bam Adebayo
C Meyers Leonard
G Duncan Robinson
G Kendrick Nunn
Warriors: G Stephen Curry (L hand fracture), G Jacob Evans III (L adductor strain), G Damion Lee (R hand non-displaced fracture), F Kevon Looney (neuropathy), G D'Angelo Russell (R thumb sprain), F Alen Smailagic (R ankle sprain) and G Klay Thompson (R ACL rehab) are listed as out.
Heat G Jimmy Butler (illness) is listed as probable but is expected to play. F Derrick Jones Jr. (L hip strain), F KZ Okpala (L Achilles strain) and G Dion Waiters (team suspension) are listed as out.
Warriors: Though he has been listed at power forward, Green is the de facto point guard in the makeshift starting lineup. He had a team-high eight assists on Wednesday ... Green's return shifted PG Ky Bowman back to the bench, where he is able to spark the second unit with his energy and defensive mentality ... The three-man center rotation (Marquese Chriss, Omari Spellman and Cauley-Stein) will stay in place, but the reserves have been more effective in recent games. Spellman is coming off his first double-double of the season. Chriss had a team-high seven assists two nights earlier and has scored in double figures in five of the last six games ... Looney could return as early as Monday, according to coach Steve Kerr, but target dates for the returns of Russell, Evans and Lee have not been established ... The Warriors are third in rookie points (33.7), behind second-place Miami (34.2) ... In one sign of improved defensive intensity, the Warriors have had at least 10 steals in each of the last three games ... Today's available player count: Nine.
Heat: F/G Justise Winslow returned to action this week after missing nine games due to a concussion. He came off the bench Wednesday night at Houston but could return to the starting lineup, which would push Robinson back to the bench ... Miami's bench has been highly effective, with a collective 43.9 ppg that ranks third among NBA reserve squads. Veteran G Goran Dragic (15.2 ppg) and rookie G Tyler Herro (14.8 ppg) are forming a dynamic scoring duo, while veteran F/C Kelly Olynyk (8.9 ppg) continues to stretch the floor with 3-point shooting ... Nunn, who has started every game, is having a breakout season, averaging 16.5 ppg to rank behind only Butler's 18.9 ppg. The Warriors are very familiar with Nunn, who spent last season with G-League affiliate Santa Cruz and was not called up because of the experience on the roster ... Adebayo has been among the most improved players in the league. The 6-9 Kentucky product, in his third season, is averaging a double-double (14.5 ppg, 10.4 rpg) and would be a tough matchup for Paschall.
Officials: Eric Lewis (crew chief), Sean Corbin, Dedric Taylor.
Warriors vs. Heat watch guide: Lineups, injuries, player usage originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area