Are Draymond Green and Klay Thompson Returning? Golden State Warriors vs Miami Heat: Preview, Lineups & Prediction

Published 01/03/2022, 3:30 PM EST
Oct 15, 2021; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) gets a high five from teammate Draymond Green (23) after making a three-point basket while being fouled during the third quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports


With the onset of the new year, the NBA has some riveting clashes coming up. After a tremendous start to the season, 2022 brings some much-awaited top of the table battles. In one such encounter, the Golden State Warriors take on the Miami Heat on Monday night. It will be Stephen Curry vs Jimmy Butler in an absolutely mouth-watering tussle. Who will come out on top?

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Golden State Warriors vs Miami Heat: Preview

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After a positive start to the new year, the Warriors play their first game at home against Miami. They have been in top form this season, with Stephen Curry combining with the likes of Jordan Poole and Draymond Green to run riot in the Western Conference. As they look to extend their lead on top, a stiff test in the form of the Heat awaits them. However, their 16-3 home record will be most pleasing for them.

Meanwhile, the Miami Heat have been ably led by Butler in attack. They have also been in great form this year, although some recent absentees have halted their untamed progress. Yet, the big game will call for a big performance, especially since it is away from home. In their last match, Jimmy’s late miss meant that the Sacramento Kings spoiled their party. But can they make a comeback? Last season, the teams split their ties, at one-a-piece.

Feb 17, 2021; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) shoots a three point basket against Miami Heat guard Kendrick Nunn (25) during the third quarter at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

Is GSW’s famous duo returning? Warriors vs Heat – Lineups and Prediction

Both teams have suffered multiple blows off late, due to players entering the health and safety protocols. For Golden State, Curry will be leading the pack again. In some encouraging news, center-forward Draymond Green is likely to make his anticipated return, after clearing the protocol. However, Klay Thompson will not feature, as he is still recovering match fitness. For the Heat, Bam Adebayo still misses out, while the likes of P.J. Tucker and Duncan Robinson are still ill.

Warriors Predicted Five: Stephen Curry (G), Gary Payton II (G), Draymond Green (F), Andrew Wiggins (F), Kevon Looney (C).

Heat Predicted Five: Tyler Herro (G), Kyle Lowry (G), Jimmy Butler (F), Caleb Martin (F), Omer Yurtseven (C).

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Nov 17, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) controls the ball against the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at FTX Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

It is very hard to pick between the two franchises. Yet, the Warriors have looked phenomenal this time around, seldom giving their opponents a chance. We can expect another Curry masterclass, unless Miami’s depleted defense has other ideas. And with Draymond returning, he will strengthen the back line for Golden State, while being the pivot in attack too.

Prediction: Golden State Warriors to edge out Miami Heat.

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In less than few hours, we will get the answers to all our questions. It will be 1st vs 4th in this heated encounter at Chase Center. Can the Warriors keep the momentum going in 2022? Let’s wait and watch.

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Sankalp Harikrishnan

559 articles

Sankalp Harikrishnan is an NBA and Tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He aspires to pursue Sports Journalism and has represented his institution in cricket, badminton, soccer and table tennis. Sankalp idolises Roger Federer and Stephen Curry, and has an inherent love for statistics.

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