One of the highlights of the 2022 holiday basketball schedule, the San Antonio Spurs vs Miami Heat Mexico game is here. It has been a longstanding tradition of the NBA to play games internationally around this time of year, and it is exciting to see it return. The last regular showcase game like this was played in January 2020, just months before the pandemic put the event on the shelf for the 2021 season.
San Antonio (9-19) enters the game looking to get back to winning after their three-game streak was snapped by the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night. Meanwhile, the Heat (15-15) are HOT, winning four of their last five games. Their last loss was last weekend to the Spurs, 111-115 in Miami.
Watch the San Antonio Spurs vs Miami Heat Mexico Game
- When: Saturday, December 17, 2022
- Start Time: 4 p.m. CT
- Location: Mexico City Arena – Mexico City, Mexico
- TV Channel: KENS 5 (English), KNIC (Spanish)
- Radio: 1200 WOAI-AM (English) / 1350 KXTN-AM (Spanish)
*Odds are subject to change
- Moneyline: Heat (-295) | Spurs (+245)
- Over/Under: 222.5 (-110)
- Spread: Heat -7.5 (-110)
Spurs vs Heat Injury Report
Per Paul Garica of Project Spurs, San Antonio may finally be getting center Jakob Poeltl back for the game against the Heat. Poeltl has missed the last seven games with knee soreness and is listed as “probable” as of Friday. Both Zach Collins and Romeo Langford are also listed as “probable” for Saturday’s game. Collins has had his share of injuries throughout the season, as has Langford. Neither played in Wednesday’s game against Portland. Rookies Malaki Branham and Blake Wesley will be out after playing on Friday with Dominick Barlow and the Austin Spurs. Josh Richardson has been ruled out for the game as well.
After taking some heat for their injury reporting on Wednesday, Miami got funny with their list for Saturday’s contest. On Friday, the team listed all of their contract players on the injury report for the game against the Spurs with ailments ranging from contusions and soreness to discomfort and impingement. Listed “out” for the game are Jamal Cain, Omer Yurtseven, and Gabe Vincent. Stars Bam Adebayo and Kyle Lowry received “questionable” designations, along with Udonis Haslem, Haywood Highsmith, and Caleb Martin. Both Jimmy Butler and Tyler Herro were listed as “probable”, as well as Nikola Jovic, Victor Oladipo, Duncan Robinson, Orlando Robinson, and Max Strus.
San Antonio Spurs vs Miami Heat Mexico Game Preview
Just who takes the floor on Saturday for the Heat is anyone’s guess, given their injury report antics this week. In their game on Thursday against the Houston Rockets, Adebayo, Dedmon, Lowry, and Oladipo sat out of the close affair. Tyler Herro did play, however, and he had quite the night. He dropped 41 points on the rockets while connecting on 10 three-point shots. Over the last two games for Miami, Herro has sunk 19 attempts from beyond the arc and shows no signs of slowing down in Mexico City. Given San Antonio’s league-worst perimeter defense, it could be a long night for the Spurs. If the team elects to double-team him, then Butler, Adebayo, or Lowry could be in for a big night.
San Antonio isn’t a stranger to playing south of the border, last playing in Mexico City in 2019. At that time, however, the team looked a lot different. In fact, only Poeltl is still with the team from that roster as Keldon Johnson. As a rookie, he was still playing with the G League Spurs. Now, Johnson is coming into his own as a leader and veteran on the team, the longest-tenured draft pick by the organization. Seemingly back out of his shooting slump, Johnson appears to be back in his groove. Against the Trail Blazers, he led the team with 25 points while connecting on 62 percent of his shots. It was his second game hitting 60 percent or better over the last five contests.
Getting Poeltl back should be a big help for Johnson and San Antonio, especially if Adebayo is cleared to play for the Heat. While this game looks set to be decided beyond the arc, it could easily turn into a battle in the paint if defenses swarm the line.