Will Kevin Durant Play Tonight? Brooklyn Nets Vs Miami Heat: Injury Updates, Expected Lineups, and Prediction

Published 01/23/2021, 1:00 PM EST
Jan 18, 2021; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets shooting guard James Harden (13) and power forward Kevin Durant (7) high five during the fourth quarter against the Milwaukee Bucks at Barclays Center. The Nets defeated the Bucks 125-123. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports


The Brooklyn Nets and the Miami Heat take on each other in their next regular-season fixture, and their previous meeting came on February 29, 2020. Things have massively changed since, and today they’re more like bipolar teams. The Nets boast a Big Three, while Miami is majorly weakened, due to various reasons.

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Star forward Jimmy Butler has played just 6 of Miami’s 14 games this season. As a result, they’re 6-8, ranking even below the teams that were nowhere in the standings last year.

The Nets are also not doing very well. They’re coming off two major blows against the Cavs, trailing at the seventh spot on the points table. So which side will get the boost in the first of two back-to-back clashes?

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Brooklyn Nets vs Miami Heat: Injuries and lineup prediction

Jan 9, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) guards Washington Wizards center Robin Lopez (15) during the first half at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

For the Heat, guard Avery Bradley and forward Jimmy Butler will not play because of safety protocols. Moreover, Meyers Leonard is out because of a shoulder injury, and Tyler Herro (neck) won’t feature in the games against the Nets.

Heat’s probable starting five – Goran Dragic (PG), Gabe Vincent (SG), Duncan Robinson (SF), Kelly Olynyk (PF), and Bam Adebayo (C) 

For the Nets, it’s good news. Primarily, they do not have any newly injured players on the list of injuries. Earlier, Spencer Dinwiddie (torn ACL) and then Nicholas Claxton (knee) got sidelined. But there is no further addition to it. Secondly, they rested Kevin Durant in the second game against the Cavaliers for him to play at his best against the Heat. 

Nets’ probable lineup – Kyrie Irving (PG), James Harden (SG), Kevin Durant (SF), Jeff Green (PF), DeAndre Jordan (C) 

Who wins?

Jan 18, 2021; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets shooting guard James Harden (13) warms up before a game against the Milwaukee Bucks at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

From the looks of it, the Nets have a clear upper hand. They will play for the second time with the Big Three, and this time in greater desperation for the win.

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It will be extremely tough for the Heat to defend such a deep offensive side. The Nets surely have their troubles with the bench after the outgoing of Caris LeVert, but their starting five is just too strong if they time bigger minutes. The Nets are fourth on the 2020-21 offensive ratings, while the Heat are 18th.

The Heat lost their game against the Raptors and managed just 81 points on board. They’re not the same team that reached the NBA Finals, and there is no chance they can win against an angry Nets team, without the top guns. Yes, Goran Dragic and Bam are still playing, but they can still do as much.

We predict the Nets to win with a double-figure margin. Do you agree? Help us with your opinion in the comments.

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Read also – Miami Heat Teammate Explains Why Jimmy Butler is a Perfect Fit For the Team

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Sourabh Singh

1268 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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