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Heat thoughts, notes after Warriors loss; Dolphins reportedly close to adding familiar name to staff; UM, Panthers, Marlins

Notes on a Tuesday morning (or very late Monday night):

### This 111-103 Heat loss in Oakland --- Miami was down by just three after three -- certainly was a respectable effort against the league’s best team. Ultimately, Miami became the 36th opponent to succumb to the Warriors in 38 games.

Credit Gerald Green (15 points), Tyler Johnson (13 points on 6 for 7) and Luol Deng (14 points, 10 boards) for doing their part on a night that Chris Bosh shot 6 for 15 and Dwyane Wade 6 for 20.

Bosh did have 12 boards (to go along with 15 points) and Wade contributed a season-high 11 assists (with 20 points). 

“Our guys are competitive; we didn’t feel good about this,” Erik Spoelstra said of staying close to a team that has now won 36 consecutive regular season home games. "Every time you have a chance, if you make a mistake, they capitalize on it."

With Hassan Whiteside sidelined by a knee injury, we also got a peek of how the Heat would look opening a game with a small lineup. That group --- with Justise Winslow starting --- played better to start the first quarter than it did to start the third.

And for his many admirable qualities (excellent defender, commendable poise, high basketball IQ), Winslow’s shooting simply must improve if he’s going to eventually become a quality starter on a good team.

The Warriors often left him unguarded and with a 3-of-8 effort from the field, Winslow now has made at least half of his shots only twice in his past 17 games. He’s shooting 27 for 75 over the span, dropping his season percentage to 39.2.

Overall, he’s 15 for 66 on threes (22.7 percent).

### Wade, incidentally, is now 9 for 37 over his past two games. He said he's playing through a shoulder injury sustained in the third quarter of Saturday's game at Utah.

The NBA’s highest-percentage shooting guard over the past decade, Wade stands at an uncharacteristic 45.2 percent from the field, which would be a career worst.

Wade ranks second in the league among guards (minimum 100 attempts) in shooting percentage at the rim (68.4 percent). That trails only Ben McLemore. But he hasn’t been nearly as consistent with his mid-range game.

### Amare Stoudemire had six points and two boards, but Spoelstra played him only five minutes, instead opting to use Udonis Haslem slightly more (seven minutes) in Whiteside's absence. Stoudemire's playing time, assuredly much less than he expected when he signed here, has grown in Josh McRoberts' absence, but Spoelstra very seldom goes to him in the second half.

Mostly, though, the Heat went small tonight.

### MVP favorite Stephen Curry had 31 points but the Warriors were outscored by three points with him in the game --- which, according to Warriors writers --- is remarkably the first time he has been a minus in plus/minus in any game this season.

### The Panthers’ win streak is over at 12, ended by a 3-2 loss to Vancouver in overtime, but at least Florida picked up a point, leaving them six ahead of Detroit in the Atlantic. What’s more, Florida is 18-3-1 over its past 22.

With 57 points, Florida is 11 points up on the 9th seed (Tampa), so a playoff berth – which would be Florida’s third this century – looks highly likely barring an unexpected collapse….

Coach Gerard Gallant will miss Wednesday’s game at Calgary to attend his mother’s funeral.

For more on the fight that followed the game, check out George Richards' Twitter account from overnight.

### The Dolphins on Monday interviewed Titans receivers coach Shawn Jefferson for the same job and are expected to hire him, according to ESPN’s Adam Caplan and Paul Kuharsky (via Kuharsky’s Twitter account).

Jefferson caught 470 passes in a 13-year career but has drawn mixed reviews as a receiver coach.

Justin Hunter and Kendall Wright, two high draft picks, haven’t fulfilled their potential under Jefferson’s watch, with Wright regressing after a exceptional 2013. (Though in Jefferson's defense, a strong case could be made that both players were overdrafted.)

Before joining the Titans in 2013, Jefferson was the Lions’ receivers coach.

### Jarvis Landry, appearing on Sirius XM Radio, said he’s excited about the coaching change and pointed to two necessities for this offense: “putting guys in space” to make plays (he called for more screens) and protecting the quarterback (obviously).

### With UM rising to No. 8 in the AP poll, this marks only the third season that the Hurricanes have cracked the top 10 since the program was reinstated in 1985. The others: 2012-13 and 1998-99.

UM (13-1) plays at No. 11 Virginia at 7 p.m. Tuesday on ESPNU.

### The Marlins are on the lookout for a right-handed hitter. They haven’t reached out all offseason to the representation for Casey McGehee, who hit .182 in 110 at-bats after being claimed off waivers from the Giants.

MLB Network's Jon Heyman mentioned Jeff Francouer as a possibility. He hit .258 with 13 homers and 45 RBI for the Phillies last season. He can play every outfield position but has never played first base, a position where the Marlins could use a right-handed backup behind lefty Justin Bour.

Twitter: @flasportsbuzz

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