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News » Miami Heat Getting Inside 2009-12-02

Miami Heat Getting Inside 2009-12-02

Miami Heat Getting Inside 2009-12-02Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he is hopeful his team can use this current four-game western swing to come together after opening the season with a shaky 6-5 home record.

The trip's opener, a 107-100 victory at Portland, certainly was a step in the right direction.

"These can be some season-changing moments," Spoelstra said. "There's not going to be anybody else but ourselves, and we're going to have lean on each other and trust each other, come together.

"It's a great challenge."

The Heat has a history of reviving itself during its early season western swing. Last year, after a 106-68 thrashing at Portland at the outset of what was a five-game trip, the Heat won three of the next four. In fact, the lone remaining loss on the trip was a disputed one-point decision against the Clippers that came when the officials acknowledged an inadvertent whistle in the closing seconds.

"I never mind going out west," guard Dwyane Wade said. "Of course, it's tough on the schedule, but it's actually good for a team because all you have is yourself, your 15 players, your six or seven coaches and your training staff. You have to come together."

It doesn't get any easier after Tuesday's victory in Portland, with the Nuggets up next on Thursday night in Denver, immediately followed Friday by the Lakers at Staples Center.

"It's a tough trip. It's the NBA schedule. You can't cry about it," Wade said. "The only thing we've got to do is get our rest as much as we can."

Survival might be all the Heat needs. It not only has four days off after Sunday's close of the trip in Sacramento; it then plays six in a row at home before its Christmas Day game in New York.

"It's a good time for us to try to pull together," forward Quentin Richardson said.

HEAT 107, TRAIL BLAZERS 100: With Quentin Richardson returning to the starting lineup, the Heat found the chemistry it had been lacking as it snapped a two-game losing streak and defeated the Blazers for the first time in five tries. Michael Beasley finished with 27 points, one off his career high, with guard Dwyane Wade securing his first double-double of the season with 22 points and 12 assists.

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Added: December 2, 2009


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