MIAMI (CBSMiami/SportsDirect) – The Miami Heat are very happy to be playing games in front of their home fans.READ MORE: South Florida’s Steamy Weather Might Help Suppress COVID Spread During Summertime
Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan rarely faces an opposing big man as strong as he is on the glass, but he might just get that opportunity on Sunday.
Jordan and the Clippers will visit Hassan Whiteside and the Heat in the hours before the Super Bowl.
Jordan is on a rebounding binge of late with at least 15 boards in six straight games while Whiteside is coming off a triple-double in a win on Friday.
Los Angeles kicked off its four-game road trip with a 107-93 win at Orlando that included 12 points, 18 rebounds and three blocks from Jordan, who ranks second in the league with an average of 13.9 boards.
Whiteside (11.1) sits fifth in the NBA in rebounding average but leads the pack in blocks (4.02) while Jordan (2.25) entered the weekend ranked third, and Jordan (.716) and Whiteside (.616) rank first and second in field-goal percentage.
Whiteside went 4-of-8 from the floor on Friday en route to 10 points and added 10 rebounds and 10 blocks in 27 minutes to help the team earn a 98-95 win at Charlotte.
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ABOUT THE CLIPPERS (33-17): Jordan is shouldering a bigger burden with Blake Griffin (broken hand) out, and Los Angeles is getting contributions from a host of different players.
Lance Stephenson took his turn to step up on Friday and went 6-of-6 from the field in 19 minutes off the bench in support of starter Paul Pierce, who is occupying Griffin’s spot and scored 12 points in Orlando.
Pierce had failed to score more than five points in any of his five previous games, including a scoreless 16 minutes against Chicago on Jan. 31.
ABOUT THE HEAT (29-22): Whiteside has come off the bench in each of the last two games after missing six straight with an oblique injury but looked plenty healthy on Friday.
“When the ball is around my elbow, I’m going to try to catch it,” Whiteside told reporters. “Then I’m going to get the ball to [Dwyane Wade], so he can do D-Wade stuff.”
Wade scored 22 points on Friday and is averaging 21.7 during Miami’s stretch of six wins in seven games.
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- Heat F Gerald Green is 3-of-25 from 3-point range in the last nine games.
- Los Angeles G Jamal Crawford scored 20 or more points in three straight games and four of the last five.
- Jordan sat out a 104-90 home win over Miami on Jan. 13 due to illness.
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