|7:30 PM PT8:30 PM MT9:30 PM CT10:30 PM ET3:30 GMT11:30 8:30 PM MST10:30 PM EST7:30 UAE (+1)04:3022:30 ET9:30 PM CTNaN:� , December 8, 2018
Staples Center, Los Angeles, California Attendance: 17,113
Clippers return home to face Heat
Miami Heat at Los Angeles Clippers
- Miami swept the two-game season series with the Clippers last season, with the two wins coming by a combined eight points. The Clippers are 7-3 in their last 10 home games in the series.
- The Clippers lost at home to Denver on opening night this season, but haven't lost a home game since. Their nine-game home winning streak is the longest active one in the NBA, and the longest by the Clippers within a single season since a team-record 13-game home win streak in 2012-13.
- Los Angeles was held to season lows in points (86) and field-goal percentage (.338) in Wednesday's 96-86 loss at Memphis. Tobias Harris failed to score in double figures for the first time this season (seven points on 2-of-13 shooting).
- Reigning Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams once again leads all reserves with 17.6 points per game off the bench. He has an NBA-high 10 games with 20+ points off the bench.
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Tied for the top spot in the NBA's Western Conference as recently as Wednesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Clippers will take the floor Saturday for their first home game in 10 days, still wanting more from their impressive season.
When the Clippers face the Miami Heat at Staples Center on Saturday night they will be coming off a 2-2 road trip against teams currently .500 or better. But where that once might have been reason for satisfaction, these Clippers have a conflicted feeling about their recent run of play.
"I was hoping for more," Clippers head coach Doc Rivers said after a 96-86 defeat to the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday. "If you look at the big picture you will take a .500 road trip, but you want better. I think as a team we have to expect better."
Playing in their second game on a mammoth six-game road trip, the Heat hope they will not be looking back at the journey thinking about what could have been. Miami opened the trip Thursday night at Phoenix with a 115-98 victory over the Suns.
The road is not as frightening a place for the Heat as it might be for others. Miami is now 5-5 away from home. In fact, just about anywhere on the East Coast is bad news for the Heat, which is 5-9 at home, 5-12 against the Eastern Conference and just 1-7 against the Southeast Division.
When the Heat left on their longest road trip of the season, there were concerns about a defense that could not hold a lead Tuesday against the Orlando Magic, giving up 59 second-half points in a 105-90 defeat.
There was also a perceived lack of urgency on offense as a passive Heat went to the free-throw line just five times, the second lowest total in team history. The two made free throws were tied for the lowest in team history.
"The biggest thing in this league is that you have to know what is successful for you," Heat veteran Dwyane Wade said this week. "You've got to know what works for you. I think we've seen it in the wins, the good wins that we've had. And I think we've seen the opposite in the losses. So how can we get to more consistency?"
It was better in Friday's victory at Phoenix, but on Tuesday, the Heat's response for a 50-point first half and four-point lead was a 12-point third quarter against the Magic, the lowest scoring quarter all season.
It does not bode well for the Heat that they are playing the second night of back-to-back games and are up against a defensive-minded team like the Clippers. Los Angeles has held its opponents to 44.1 field goal percentage, fourth best in the NBA.
The Heat hold their opponents to a 44.6 field goal percentage, eighth best in the NBA, but will be challenged by a Clippers team that scores 116.4 points per game, fourth best in the league.
Updated December 8, 2018