After winning four straight, the Miami Heat reverted to the team that has struggled most of the season.
Despite facing the shorthanded Los Angeles Clippers Monday, they fell 125-118 at Staples Center. The Clippers were playing without starters Paul George, Kawhi Leonard and Patrick Beverley.
The loss wasted one of the Heat's best offensive performances of the season. Forward Jimmy Butler led them with a season-high 30 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. The Heat also got 27 points and 12 rebounds from center Bam Adebayo and 27 points from Tyler Herro.
“I'm not going to say we gave one away, we didn’t deserve to win,” Butler said. “We weren't protecting the paint or rotating or running them off the line to make them miss. They were just comfortable the whole game.”
The Heat, who are coming off making the NBA Finals a year ago, are now 1-2 on their seven-game, West Coast road trip. The swing continues Wednesday against the Golden State Warriors. They finish the trip with games against the Sacramento Kings, Los Angeles Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder.
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he still thinks the team regain momentum on the trip before returning home.
“We had some breakdowns. They capitalized on the important ones at swing moments of the game,” Spoelstra said. “We just did not do things well enough, consistently enough.”
Follow all of our Miami Heat coverage on Facebook here
Subscribe to our YouTube channel here
For any Heat or NBA questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org