National Basketball Association
Preview
San Antonio at Miami
When: 8:00 PM ET, Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Where: American Airlines Arena, Miami, Florida

While San Antonio is close to securing at least sixth place in the Western Conference, Miami hopes to move into the same spot in the East. The teams continue their playoff chase when they meet Tuesday in their first encounter in South Florida since Game 4 of the 2014 NBA Finals. The Spurs, whose magic number to clinch a playoff spot was two entering Monday, have won six of seven after a 103-89 win over Memphis on Sunday, and is 2 1/2 games up on seventh-place Dallas.

The Heat pulled into Monday two games behind Milwaukee in the race for the sixth seed in the East, a coveted spot in that it would likely avoid a first-round matchup with Cleveland. Dwyane Wade scored 40 points to help Miami get past Detroit 109-102 on Sunday, which also left Miami 1 1/2 games up on eighth-place Brooklyn. Kawhi Leonard hit a career-high five 3-pointers en route to 24 points to lead San Antonio to a 98-85 home win against the Heat on Feb. 6.

TV: 8 p.m., TNT, FSN Southwest (San Antonio)

ABOUT THE SPURS (47-26): Leonard carried San Antonio down the stretch against the Grizzlies by scoring the team's first 15 points of the fourth quarter en route to 25 points and 10 rebounds, continuing another late-season surge. Leonard averaged 14.7 points on 53.1 percent shooting after the All-Star break last season (11.6 on 51.7 percent prior to the break) before standing out in the postseason, including an outstanding effort in the finals against the Heat. This season, the fourth-year pro has bumped his scoring average from 15.4 before the break to 17.3 after it, while lifting his shooting percentage nearly six percentage points.

ABOUT THE HEAT (34-39): Regardless of where it finishes the season, Miami will not have much of a chance to do any damage in the postseason unless it can get healthy. Big men Hassan Whiteside (hand) and Chris Andersen (calf) have missed the last three games and the Heat had to play the second half against Detroit without forwards Luol Deng (knee) and Michael Beasley (elbow contusion). While Wade - who had fluid drained from his left knee on Saturday - carried Miami on Sunday, veteran Udonis Haslem provided plenty of support with season highs of 18 points and 13 rebounds, his second double-double in the last three games.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Heat SF Henry Walker has 17 made field goals over his last seven games, all of them from 3-point range.

2. San Antonio SG Manu Ginobili is averaging 5.5 points - half his season average - on 36.8 percent shooting in four games since returning from a sprained ankle.

3. The Spurs are averaging 111.6 points in 14 games this month.

PREDICTION: Spurs 105, Heat 101
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
San Antonio 47-26 W3 29-8 18-18 3-1 44-25 6-7 26-19
Miami 34-39 W1 18-18 16-21 4-3 30-36 4-10 22-22
Last Meeting
San Antonio Miami
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
2/6/15 MIA 85 SA 98 98 43 48.2 85 37 45.0
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
San Antonio K. Leonard 24 53.3 3
Miami T. Johnson 18 70.0 2
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
San Antonio T. Duncan 12 4 8
Miami J. Ennis 8 2 6
Assists Player  
San Antonio M. Ginobili 9
Miami N. Cole 5
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
San Antonio T. Duncan 973 49.9 205
Miami D. Wade 1275 48.2 264
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
San Antonio T. Duncan 650 159 491
Miami H. Whiteside 401 123 278
Assists Player  
San Antonio T. Parker 318
Miami D. Wade 302
Quickchart Matchup
San Antonio Off vs  Miami Defense
102.7 Points For
96.8 Points Against
46.3 FG%
45.5 FG%
43.7 Reb
40.6 Reb
Miami Off vs  San Antonio Defense
94.7 Points For
97.4 Points Against
45.7 FG%
44.4 FG%
40.6 Reb
42.6 Reb