Rozier and Adebayo team up to guide the Miami Heat to a hard-fought victory over the Washington Wizards

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Wizards vs Heats (Credits: SI)

Terry Rozier III put up 27 points, while Bam Adebayo contributed 22 as the Miami Heat toughed out a 119-107 win over the Washington Wizards on Sunday night.

Jimmy Butler also added 17 points for the Heat, who secured their second consecutive victory. Miami, currently in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, made 25 out of 29 free throws, narrowing the gap to just half a game behind Indiana in the race to avoid the NBA Play-In Tournament.

Even though the Heat made it to the NBA Finals from the seventh seed last season, Coach Erik Spoelstra emphasized the importance of aiming for the highest possible position.

“We’re going all out. That’s our mindset,” Spoelstra stated. “If we see an opportunity, we’ll seize it.” Miami’s upcoming games will be against teams battling for playoff spots in the East, starting with New York at home on Tuesday.

“We can’t think too far ahead, we’ve got to focus on the next game,” Adebayo remarked. “Both teams have something at stake, so there’s going to be added intensity.”

Wizards vs Heats (Credits: FOX News)

In the absence of the Wizards’ leading scorer Kyle Kuzma, who was sidelined with a bruised right heel, Jordan Poole scored 22 points, and Marvin Bagley III recorded 12 points and 10 rebounds. Anthony Gill matched his career high with 18 points for the Wizards, who have now lost three consecutive games after a three-game winning streak.

Miami took control with a 24-7 run, hitting seven 3-pointers during that stretch. Rozier nailed the final two before halftime, giving the Heat a 66-59 lead, their largest at that point. “That’s his role, to provide that spark when needed,” Adebayo commented on Rozier, who scored 20 of his points in the first half. “And he leads the team well.”

Duncan Robinson made two more 3-pointers early in the third quarter after missing five games due to ongoing back problems. With additional 3-pointers from Rozier and Nikola Jokić, Miami’s lead extended to 78-62.

Butler’s five consecutive points in the fourth quarter, including a dunk and a three-point play, restored Miami’s lead to 112-97 after the Wizards briefly cut the deficit to 10.

“We’ll take wins in any way we can get them,” Spoelstra said after the game. “In the second half, when we managed to string together some defensive stops and extend our lead to double digits, it was encouraging to see us maintain that separation.”

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By Ritik

Ritik Katiyar is pursuing a post-graduate degree in Pharmaceutics. Currently, he lives in Srinagar, Uttarakhand, India. You can find him writing about all sorts of listicle topics. A pharmaceutical postgrad by day, and a content writer by night. You can write to him at [email protected]

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