National Basketball Association
Preview
Miami at Toronto
When: 8:00 PM ET, Tuesday, May 3, 2016
Where: Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario

The Toronto Raptors and the Miami Heat both had more trouble in the first round than they intended and ended up battling through seven games to reach the Eastern Conference semifinals. Neither team will have had much time to prepare when the Raptors host the Heat in Game 1 on Tuesday.

Miami looked unstoppable in its first two games against the Charlotte Hornets in the first round before struggling through the next four only to find its form again in a 106-73 shellacking at home in Game 7 on Sunday. “Every team faces tough times; we know those times are going to come,” Heat point guard Goran Dragic told reporters. “We have so many veteran guys; they just help you find a way when you’re going through tough times. We just had to grow as a team.” The Raptors don’t need to grow as a team as much as they need to rediscover who they were during a regular season that saw them push the Cleveland Cavaliers into the final week before settling for the No. 2 seed. Toronto nearly squandered all of a 16-point, fourth-quarter lead in Game 7 against Indiana before pulling out an 89-84 triumph and is still waiting for the shots to fall for All-Star guards DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, TNT

ABOUT THE HEAT: Miami star Dwyane Wade kept his team alive with a brilliant fourth quarter in Game 6 but everyone stepped up in Game 7 with the season on the line. Dragic scored 25 points in the clincher while Hassan Whiteside, who feels that the strength the team formed in the series will help them the rest of the way in the playoffs, capped a strong series with 10 points, 12 rebounds and five blocked shots. “I really think it gave us better focus going into the second round,” Whiteside told reporters. “I remember how guys felt after we lost Game 5. Guys were down and I told them, ‘Hey, we’re going to go and steal one in Charlotte.’”

ABOUT THE RAPTORS: Toronto scrapped past the seventh-seeded Pacers despite terrible shooting slumps from Lowry (31.6 percent from the field in the series) and DeRozan (31.9), who both hit key shots down the stretch in Game 7. “My teammates count on me,” Lowry told reporters. “My teammates love me and they support me, no matter what I do. No matter what happens, they’re always going to be there, and they’re never going to doubt me.” DeRozan, who was 10-for-32 from the floor in Game 7 but knocked down the free throws at the end that sealed the win and finished 9-of-9 from the line, should be glad to see Miami, against which he averaged 29.3 points on 48.8 percent shooting in four regular season games.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. The Raptors advanced past for the first round for the first time since 2001.

2. Miami F Luol Deng averaged 19 points on 54.1 percent shooting in the first round.

3. Toronto took three of the four meetings in the regular season.

PREDICTION: Heat 103, Raptors 95
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Miami 52-37 W2 31-14 21-23 4-3 48-34 14-9 35-24
Toronto 60-29 W1 35-10 24-19 3-4 57-25 14-2 43-16
Last Meeting
Miami Toronto
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
3/12/16 MIA 104 TOR 112 104 47 37.8 112 42 44.0
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Miami J. Johnson 28 52.4 2
Toronto D. DeRozan 38 50.0 12
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Miami H. Whiteside 11 6 5
Toronto D. DeRozan 10 0 10
Assists Player  
Miami G. Dragic 9
Toronto D. DeRozan 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Miami D. Wade 1613 45.3 362
Toronto D. DeRozan 2012 42.9 612
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Miami H. Whiteside 974 270 704
Toronto B. Biyombo 773 220 553
Assists Player  
Miami G. Dragic 471
Toronto K. Lowry 572
Quickchart Matchup
Miami Off vs  Toronto Defense
100.0 Points For
97.9 Points Against
47.0 FG%
44.4 FG%
44.4 Reb
40.7 Reb
Toronto Off vs  Miami Defense
101.9 Points For
97.8 Points Against
44.6 FG%
43.8 FG%
40.7 Reb
40.9 Reb