The Miami Heat have recovered from a poor run in the last few weeks to occupy the fifth spot in the East. Meanwhile, the Cleveland Cavaliers are languishing in the second-last spot and look headed towards the NBA lottery.
Fixture: Cleveland Cavaliers vs Miami Heat | NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Saturday, April 3rd; 8:00 PM ET (Sunday, 4th April; 5:30 AM IST).
Venue: American Airlines Arena, Miami.
Cleveland Cavaliers Preview
The Cleveland Cavaliers are on a 4-game losing run, with their most recent loss coming against the Philadelphia 76ers. The biggest reason behind the Cleveland Cavaliers' woeful form this season has been their offense, which is the worst in the league this season by some distance.
The Cleveland Cavaliers have managed a terrible defensive rating of 104.3 and are averaging a league-low of 102.7 points per game. Their playmaking and rebounding have been underwhelming as well, as the team are seventh-worst in both assists and rebounds in the 2020-21 campaign.
Key Player - Collin Sexton
Collin Sexton is likely to be the Chicago Bulls' primary target on their scouting report. The third-year guard is the engine that drives the Cleveland Cavaliers. He is averaging 24 points and 4.2 assists per game in what has been the best campaign of his young career so far.
With defenses looking to neutralize the opposition's best player, Sexton's performance could determine if the Cleveland Cavaliers win on the night. Their task won't be easy, considering how terrific the Miami Heat defense has been this campaign.
Cleveland Cavaliers Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Darius Garland; Shooting Guard - Collin Sexton; Small Forward - Isaac Okoro; Power Forward - Dean Wade; Center - Isaiah Hartenstein.
Also Read: LA Lakers vs Sacramento Kings Prediction & Match Preview - April 2nd, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21.
Miami Heat Preview
The Miami Heat have been stellar on the defensive side of the ball, giving away just 107 points per game and registering a defensive rating of 109.5. They have also been efficient from the charity stripe, making 79% of their free throws, the eighth-best in the league this season.
Tyler Herro and Kendrick Nunn have shone for the Heat so far, averaging 15.7 and 13.5 points per game, respectively. Duncan Robinson has also played a key role, torching teams from behind the 3-point arc, making 39.8% of his attempts from downtown.
Key Player - Jimmy Butler
Since returning from a lengthy break due to the league's health and safety protocols, Jimmy Butler has looked in incredible touch, averaging an impressive 21 points, seven rebounds and seven assists per game on 50% shooting from the field, along with two steals per outing.
Apart from leading the Miami Heat's charge offensively, Butler will be required at the defensive end as well. That is because he will likely go up against the Cleveland Cavalierss' no. 1 offensive option, Collin Sexton.
Miami Heat Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Kendrick Nunn; Shooting Guard - Duncan Robinson; Small Forward - Jimmy Butler; Power Forward - Trevor Ariza; Center - Bam Adebayo.
Cavaliers vs Heat Match Prediction
The Miami Heat are overwhelming favorites to win this game, considering how balanced their roster is. The Cleveland Cavaliers could be no match for the likes of Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo and Victor Oladipo, and it should be a relatively easy outing for Erik Spoelstra's men.