NBA Summer League 2021 is all set to host a battle between the Atlanta Hawks and the Miami Heat. The three-time championship winner will meet the 2021 Eastern Conference finalists at the Thomas and Mack Center.
The Miami Heat are coming off their first loss to the Utah Jazz in the summer league. They won four of their five matches and seemed unbeatable until their loss. It is surprising how tight their offense has been throughout the preseason matches. Their match against the Memphis Grizzlies showed their true potential on the front court. The young Miami Heat squad is versatile in scoring and can make big shots during clutch time.
On the other side of the rope, the Atlanta Hawks haven't enjoyed as lovely a summer as they would have hoped. In their three games, they have lost two. Their previous match against the Philadelphia 76ers was intense. After leading in the first half, the Atlanta Hawks were taken to the OT by the 76ers where they scored only two points and lost 96-88.
Fixture - Miami Heat vs Atlanta Hawks | NBA Summer League 2021.
Date & Time - Saturday, August 14th, 2021, 4:00 PM ET (Sunday, 1:30 AM IST)
Venue - Thomas and Mack Center, Las Vegas, NV.
Miami Heat Preview
The Miami Heat definitely brought their A-game to the 2021 NBA Summer League. They have played ferociously on offense, making some plays that deserve all our praise. However, the 14 man squad has struggled defensively in some instances.
The Miami squad has an impressive roster that includes players like Max Strus, Omer Yurtseven and KZ Okpala. The Heat's youngsters have been phenomenal on the court, putting up big numbers and winning well fought games. The team from Florida is definitely eying the win.
Key Player - Omer Yurtseven
Omer Yurtseven is the Miami Heat's secret weapon. While Strus is obviously an exceptional scorer, Omer is little more than just a scorer. It's his defensive potential that makes him a key player for his team. Yurtseven can protect the rim and contest offensive and defensive rebounds.
He has put up incredible numbers match after match in the preseason. Yurtseven is averaging 22.8 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks in the summer league. He has also been reliable with his shooting, averaging 51.4% shooting from the field and 36.85% from beyond the arc.
Miami Heat Predicted Lineup
G/F - Max Strus, C - Omer Yurtseven, F - KZ Okpala, G - Marcus Garrett, G - DeJon Jarreau
Atlanta Hawks Preview
The young Atlanta Hawks squad is a fearsome offensive monster. It can devour its opponents with an unbelievable variety of scoring plays. But what stands out even more for the Atlanta Hawks is how well coordinated they have been in their last few games.
The Atlanta Hawks picked Jalen Johnson and Sharife Cooper as their 20th and 48th overall picks respectively. The duo have been a scoring machine in their summer league matches and, hopefully, will continue to do so. However, their loss to the Boston Celtics and 76ers have brought their defensive limitations to notice.
Key Player - Sharife Cooper
Sharife Cooper was the leading force in the Atlanta Hawks' win over the Indiana Pacers. He knocked down five threes in the game, including the match-winning three from the corner.
In the 76ers vs Atlanta Hawks match, Cooper added 21 points and 12 assists to the losing team's cause. It is interesting to see how his game is evolving as a feeder and playmaker. Shareef has been bringing out the best in his team.
Atlanta Hawks Predicted Lineup
G - Sharife Cooper, G - Skylar Mars, F - DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell, F - Jordan Bell, C - Jalen Johnson.
Heat vs Jazz Prediction
The Miami Heat have been exceptional in their games. The team has shown great offense and defense but they do need to tie loose ends in their defense. Meanwhile, the Atlanta Hawks have shown incredible offensive capabilities. But if they do not improve their defense, they will be unable to stop the full frontal attack by Miami.
Where to watch Miami Heat vs Atlanta Hawks game
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The game will be publicly televised on ESPN 2. You can also watch the match locally on NBA TV Canada.