Wizards eye revenge vs. rival Heat

(SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of Southeast Division foes will renew their rivalry Monday, as the Washington Wizards battle the Miami Heat at the Verizon Center.

The Wizards will be out for revenge of a 107-95 loss in Miami on Oct. 29 and have lost six of the previous eight games in this series. Washington, though, has won two in a row and four of the past five meetings at home and is trying to pass the Heat as the top team in the division.

The two rivals will meet again Dec. 19 in Miami and March 15 at Washington.

Washington ended a two-game losing streak its last time out in an 83-80 triumph versus the New Orleans Pelicans Saturday in the opener of a four-game homestand. The division-leading Wizards were led by Marcin Gortat, who powered his way to 24 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks.

Gortat played 41 minutes and was 12-of-20 from the floor.

"I think my teammates found me a lot. I think I was in the right spots," said Gortat. "(I) tried to be productive, tried to be aggressive (and) a little bit more physical."

Bradley Beal scored 12 points, John Wall had 11 and seven assists, and Paul Pierce chipped in 10 points, helping the Wizards improve to 10-5 overall and 6-2 at the Verizon Center. Pierce is averaging 15.0 points and 4.5 rebounds in his last six games.

In six games since returning from a wrist injury, Beal is averaging 14.2 points, 3.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game.

The Wizards are averaging 98.4 ppg at home and will also entertain the Los Angeles Lakers and Denver Nuggets. In injury news, forward Nene (foot) is questionable versus the Heat and has missed the last three games.

Miami is playing the second game of a back-to-back and defeated the New York Knicks, 86-79, Sunday night at Madison Square Garden.

Heat star guard Dwyane Wade returned from a seven-game absence because of a hamstring issue and scored 27 points on 11-of-18 shooting. The Heat went 3-4 without Wade and also received 20 points and nine rebounds from Chris Bosh. Luol Deng rounded out the double-digit scorers with 10 points and 10 boards.

Knicks star Carmelo Anthony returned after a two-game absence because of back spasms and netted 31 points.

Wade scored 13 points in the fourth quarter and talked about his role in crunchtime.

"I understand that in the fourth quarter, Chris (Bosh) and myself are going to be the guys that our team is going to be looking at to bring it home," Wade said. "That's the only quarter that I can really be selfish."

New York rallied from 16 points down to pull within 65-63, but Wade and the Heat were able to maintain their lead. Bosh's 3-pointer with about a minute left set the Heat up for their fourth win in the last six games.

The Heat are playing seven of the next eight games on the road and are 5-2 outside of South Beach this season. They will host Atlanta Wednesday before embarking on a five-game odyssey.

Miami is 5-1 this season when scoring 100 or more points and 8-0 when leading after three quarters.