Notes on a Wednesday night:
### Drubbed 113-93 tonight in Cleveland, the Heat goes to the All-Star break at 22-30 and barely hanging onto the eighth and final playoff seed, one game ahead of 21-31 Brooklyn, 1.5 ahead of 20-31 Boston and two ahead of 21-33 Detroit and Indiana.
Charlotte also is 22-30 but owns the tiebreaker with Miami for seventh.
Catching Milwaukee, which is sixth at 30-23, seems highly unlikely.
So if Miami makes the playoffs, you’re looking at a first round series against likely top seed Atlanta or whoever is No. 2: Toronto (36-17), Chicago (33-20) or steamrolling Cleveland (33-21).
If the Heat can rise to seventh, the Raptors obviously would be preference.
Playing its seventh straight game without Dwyane Wade, the Heat wasn’t especially competitive tonight, never pulling closer than 10 in the second quarter or 12 in the second half.
“The game started with four or five turnovers, and some one pass shots, that led to easy opportunities for them,” Erik Spoelstra said.
The Heat had held 17 of its past 19 opponents to less than 50 percent shooting (43 percent overall).
But Cleveland shot 56 percent and scored 26 points off 17 turnovers, including four from Luol Deng and three from Mario Chalmers and Shabazz Napier, who had a career-high eight assists and some good moments early.
“He’s a heady player,” Spoelstra said. “He can still take another step in [where] he attacks.”
Chris Bosh (15 points) struggled through a 5 for 17 shooting night, and Norris Cole was an absurd -25 plus/minutes in 22 minutes
### As for Hassan Whiteside, he had 17 points and 14 boards in 28 minutes but no blocked shots, and Cleveland’s centers shot 16 for 19: Timofev Mozgov (20 points) going 9 for 11, and Tristan Thompson (17 points) 7 for 8. Whiteside said his ankle is still an issue and he needs to "get back to where I can jump high [to] block shots.... When everyone is healthy, you're going to see the real Miami Heat."
LeBron James filled the boxscore for the Cavaliers as he so often did for the Heat, with 18 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists.
### Bosh, who had just two rebounds in 36 minutes tonight, on the state of the Heat: "We can't do anything to change [the first half] but move forward. We can utilize this break to focus on these 30 games. We have a chance to move up or move down.
"In this 30-game sprint, we need to play more consistent defense and consistent offense. We need to work on having that mental toughness to move on and get to the next situation. We're still trying to find continuity, still don't have our big guy in there. We''ll figure it out eventually."
The Heat will have six days off before re-convening for practice next Wednesday, and Bosh --- who will play in Sunday's All-Star game --- conceded: "I need a break. It's been tough. It's been a struggle."
Bosh has struggled with his shot more than usual this season (46 percent from the field) and said this seaosn has been "an adjustment. Still getting used to how teams are reacting to me. It's a daily battle. They're really loading up on me, making it tough on me. If I'm not hitting easy ones, it makes it tougher. I know that shooting percentage will go up. When we get Dwyane up, that will help me out a lot."
### Both ESPN mock drafts are now in unison! Like Todd McShay, Mel Kiper now has the Dolphins taking Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes at No. 14.
“The Dolphins need to add some effective youth at cornerback, and Waynes is a well-coached cover man who comes in with the versatility to help in both man and zone and brings a physical presence,” Kiper wrote on ESPN.com. He's effective in taking on the big receivers who dot the league and won't shy away from tackling duties and setting the edge as a run-defender.
“If you're going on pure upside, [Washington’s] Marcus Peters could gain a slight edge on Waynes, but Waynes gets the nod for reliability. The Combine can shift perceptions at this position, but I think Waynes is a safe bet to be one of the top two corners taken and it's a need area for the Dolphins, who need more playmakers in their secondary.
### NFL Network’s Mike Mayock told WQAM’s Joe Rose today that the top defensive linemen, USC’s Leonard Williams and Washington tackle Danny Shelton, will be gone by 14. But he said Texas d-tackle Malcom Brown and Oklahoma d-tackle Jordan Phillips (“a boom or bust guy”) could be options at 14.
And Mayock said “the receiver class is really good. Exciting class. At 14, there are three wideouts… Not everyone agrees what the order is: West Virginia’s Kevin White, Alabama’s Amari Cooper and Louisville’s Devante Parker. If any one of those was available at 14, that would be pretty exciting.”
Also, Mayock told Rose there are three receivers who “remind people of Mike Wallace” from a speed standpoint: UM’s Phillip Dorsett, Auburn’s Sammy Coates and Ohio State’s Devin Smith. “All three will go in second round,” he said.
### Another damaging loss for UM tonight, its third setback to a team below .500 in the ACC. UM rallied from nine down at halftime at Wake Forest, but fell 72-70 as Angel Rodriguez’s driving layup rimmed out at the buzzer, dropping Miami to 15-9 and 5-6.
Rodriguez drove to the basket more often, rather than settling for jumpers, on a 15-point night, and Davon Reed scored 17. But UM, which led narrowly before Tonye Jekiri fouled out late, squandered a very winnable game against a team that entered 11-13 and 3-8 in the conference.
Wake shot 12 for 23 on threes, compared with 7 of 26 for UM, and outrebounded Miami, 37-29. Jekiri, who entered as the ACC’s leading rebounder, has just three, and Wake had too many points off offensive rebounds.
We hesitate to use the term must-win, but a loss Sunday at Boston College (9-14) would be devastating. That would mean UM would need to sweep Virginia Tech, beat FSU at home, and win two of these three (at Louisville, at Pittsburgh, home to UNC) to finish over. 500 in the conference, a necessity for an NCAA Tournament bid unless Miami makes a long run in the conference tournament.
### UM backup quarterback Malik Rosier, who is playing on the Hurricanes baseball team, said he will be available for most spring practice sessions. UM’s first practice is a week from Saturday (Feb. 21).
### Sad news today about former Knicks forward Anthony Mason, who played one season for the Heat. Retired NBA writer Peter Vecsey said Mason, 48, has endured "congestive heart failure, a heart attack, and four surgeries, the last one nine hours.
The New York Daily News reported the heart attack was massive and his condition is grave.
Mason, a longtime close friend of former Dolphins quarterback Jay Fielder, averaged 14.3 points and 6.6 rebounds in 80 games for the Heat in 2000-01 before playing his final two seasons in Milwaukee.