Epic NBA Battle: LeBron James Back in Miami, Ready to Challenge Tyler Herro and the Heat

The Los Angeles Lakers continue a four-game road swing Monday, visiting a host Miami Heat team fresh off snapping an early-season skid.
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Tyler Herro came one assist away from his second career triple-double Friday, with 24 points and 10 rebounds in Miami’s 121-114 victory over Washington.

“He’s made himself more dynamic to the point where if you blitz him, he makes a crosscourt pass,” Bam Adebayo said of Herro. “He’s really improved on looking off guys with his eyes and hitting pinpoint passes.”

Herro has led the Heat in assists in three of their first six games, and in scoring in five of six games. He is averaging 25.8 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game.
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Friday’s win pulled Miami from its slump, which saw the Heat drop all three dates of a road trip. The losing streak extended to four games in the opener of a three-game homestand Wednesday in a 109-105 loss to Brooklyn.

Los Angeles comes into the final game of Miami’s homestand for the second date of a four-game road trip. The Lakers kicked off the swing Saturday with a 120-101 loss to the Orlando Magic.

Los Angeles was outrebounded 51-40 and surrendered 19 offensive rebounds, which the Magic converted into a 36-15 edge in second-chance points.

“It came from everybody, honestly,” Anthony Davis told Spectrum SportsNet, referring to the Lakers’ rebounding woes. “Bigs contest (shots by) some of the guards, but when the guards contest, the bigs got to rebound.”

The Lakers opened the season without Jarred Vanderbilt due to a heel injury. They have also played the last three games without Rui Hachimura, who entered concussion protocol after sustaining a left-eye contusion Oct. 29 vs. Sacramento.

Another member of the frontcourt rotation, Taurean Prince, missed Saturday’s game with a knee injury. He is listed as day-to-day.

The Lakers will also be without guard Gabe Vincent (knee), who spent the previous four seasons with the Heat.

Miami heads into Monday’s contest much healthier. Caleb Martin missed Friday’s win with a knee injury, but the Heat were otherwise at full strength.

Herro, Adebayo and Jimmy Butler lead Miami in scoring, with Adebayo and Butler postin 21.4 and 17.2 points per game, respectively. Duncan Robinson at 11.7 points per game is the only other Heat player averaging in double-figures.

Davis’ 26.3 points and 13 rebounds per game lead Los Angeles, while LeBron James is posting 24.5 points, 9.2 rebounds and 6.3 assists per game — all good for second on the Lakers. James returns to Miami after winning two titles with the Heat (2012, 2013) and advancing to the NBA Finals four times in four seasons.

The Lakers’ D’Angelo Russell is averaging a team-leading 6.5 assists per game to go with 18 points. Austin Reaves is chipping in 12.5 points per game.

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