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NBA Rumors: Tyler Herro, Devin Vassell, Donovan Mitchell and Kelly Oubre Updates

The Miami Heat have been playing some excellent basketball recently. The Heat (9-5) won for the seventh time in their last eight games, dismantling the Chicago Bulls 118-100 on Monday night. The 18-point victory is the Heat’s largest this season and their first double-digit win of the campaign. With the victory, Miami moved into first place in the Southeast Division, a half-game in front of the Orlando Magic.

NBA Rumors: Tyler Herro, Devin Vassell, Donovan Mitchell and Kelly Oubre Updates

Miami is succeeding despite not having their leading scorer, Tyler Herro, available for most of the stretch. Herro, who suffered a Grade 2 right ankle sprain on November 8, has missed the Heat’s last six contests. However, Herro is no longer wearing using a walking boot and is expected to be re-evaluated later this week, per Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

While the news is encouraging, it would be surprising if Herro is back on the court in the near future. Following Herro having an MRI on the ankle, Shams Charania of The Athletic  reported that sources told him Herro would miss “several weeks.”

Duncan Robinson and Jaime Jaquez Jr. Stepping Up

Before the injury, Herro was off to a solid start to the campaign. The 23-year-old guard is in the first season of the four-year, $120 million rookie scale extension he signed last year. Herro is averaging 22.6 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 4.6 assists while shooting .447/.410/.880 this season.

A big reason for the Heat’s recent success is that they have been much better offensively lately. Miami has scored 111 or more points in five of their last six contests and is averaging 113 a game during this stretch — which is three points a game more than their season average. The Heat are shooting 47.6% from the field and making 12.7 treys at a 36.7% clip while getting to the free-throw line more frequently as well. They shot 50% from the field and made a season-high 17 triples against the Bulls on Monday.

While Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo have stepped up their production over the last six games, Duncan Robinson and Jaime Jaquez Jr.’s improvement is an even a bigger reason for the Heat’s success. Over the previous six games, Robinson averages 20.0 points and 4.2 treys with a shooting slash line of .500/.490/.940. Meanwhile, Jaquez averages 13.8 points, 4.0 caroms, and 2.8 dimes while shooting .515/.455/.833.

In other news, Thomas Bryant recently fell out of Miami’s rotation. Signed to be Adebayo’s primary backup, Bryant has seen just nine minutes over the last six contests, including four coaches-DNP. Bryant has scored in double-figures twice and averages 5.2 points along with 3.6 boards while shooting 52.5% from the field in 12.5 minutes over 10 minutes. He has done an excellent job on the boards, but the 26-year-old center has struggled defensively and is a -3.0 plus/minus.

 San Antonio Spurs Suffers 9th Straight Loss As Devin Vassell Remains Out

San Antonio lost for the ninth straight time on Monday, falling to the Los Angeles Clippers 124-99, and it was the third consecutive contest that Devin Vassell missed due to a groin injury. Vassell, who has missed five games overall, is dealing with a  left adductor strain.

Vassell is considered questionable when the Spurs and Clippers meet at the Frost Bank Center on Wednesday. The questionable destination is an upgrade over the previous games, as the 23-year-old was previously listed as doubtful.  Before getting injured, Vassell was shooting the ball well. He is averaging 17.3 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.8 assists while shooting .496/.431/.733.

This is the third and final time that the Clippers and Spurs are meeting this season. The Clippers have won both of the previous meetings by 25 or more points and scored at least 123 points.  San Antonio, which has lost six straight overall to Los Angeles, is 1-7 at home and has allowed at least 117 points in the past nine contests.

Cleveland Wins Fourth Straight Despite Being Shorthanded

The Cleveland Cavaliers (8-6) won for the fourth straight game on Tuesday, defeating the Philadelphia 76ers 122-119 in overtime despite being without four key players. Darius Garland, who has been fantastic the past three contests, poured in 32 points and doled out eight assists to lead the way for the Cavs. Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen posted double-doubles, while Max Strus contributed 20 points.

Donovan Mitchell, Caris LeVert, Isaac Okoro, and Ty Jerome were the players who were unavailable tonight. It was the third straight game that Mitchell missed due to a hamstring injury. Mitchell is in jeopardy of missing a fourth consecutive contest as the Cavs are back in action against Miami on Wednesday. If Mitchell cannot go, Dean Wade will likely start once again.

LeVert (knee) may have the best chance of suiting up against the Heat, as he was questionable for the game against Philadelphia before being ruled out. LeVert has missed two straight games with the injury. Meanwhile, Okoro (knee) has not played in the last eight contests, and Jerome (ankle) has been out since Oct. 28.

Kelly Oubre Takes Another Step In Recovery

Philadelphia 76ers forward Kelly Oubre Jr. returned to the practice court on Monday, just nine days after being struck by a vehicle.

Oubre suffered broken ribs in the accident and was initially expected to be out for several weeks. However, 76ers coach Nick Nurse, prior to the Sixers game on Tuesday night, suggested that Oubre will be able to in a week, if everything goes well when he gets re-evaluated.

Oubre has been excellent in his first season with Philadelphia and is a major reason the 76ers got off to their best start since 2011-12. The Sixers (10-4) fell to 3-3 in the six games without the 27-year-old after losing to Cleveland on Tuesday night. Philadelphia returns to the road to face the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday.

 

 

 

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