Kings vs HEAT reaction

Jacari McRae | January 21st, 2020

The Miami Heat continue to find ways to win at home. Despite playing sluggish for most of the game, the Heat got the stops they needed to finish off the Sacramento Kings 118-113. With the win, Miami moves to 19-1 for the season at home and is now 7-0 in overtime games. Here are my takeaways from Monday’s win over the Kings.

Zone defense

With Jimmy Butler and Justise Winslow out, the Heat were short on perimeter defenders. Because of this, the Heat stuck with the 2-3 zone defense for the majority of the game. Despite not preparing for the zone the night before, the Kings seemed ready for it.

There were multiple instances where the Kings were able to find wide open looks for three. The team shot 25 attempts in the first half, which is a Kings franchise record for any half. Buddy Hield also hit two three-pointers against the zone in overtime.

Nunn continues to play well

Lost in the talk of the Heat’s defense (or lack thereof) has been the growth in Kendrick Nunn‘s game. Nunn has been shooting the ball at a high clip lately. For the past five games, Nunn has averaged 23.6 points on 56.8 shooting from the field and 46.9 percent on threes. He’s also been doing a better job at controlling the pace of play.

On Monday, Nunn scored seven of his 25 points in overtime, including a three that put Miami back ahead for good with two minutes left in the game. Nunn had seven rebounds and six assists, but also six turnovers.

Staying ready

As Udonis Haslem once said, “You stay ready, so you don’t got to get ready.” James Johnson has done exactly that. Johnson has taken full advantage of the minutes he’s been receiving lately. In a competitive game against the Kings, Johnson made plenty of winning plays, including a clutch block to seal the deal. Johnson scored a season-high 22 points on 9-for-11 shooting.

Next up: The Washington Wizards on Wednesday. Game tips off at 7:30pm ET.

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