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Pistons Vs. Heat Preview: Detroit Has Tough Game Ahead

For more on the Detroit Pistons, check out Detroit Bad Boys.

March 21, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Detroit Pistons forward Jason Maxiell (54) passes after grabbing a rebound during the second quarter of the game against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE
March 21, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Detroit Pistons forward Jason Maxiell (54) passes after grabbing a rebound during the second quarter of the game against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE

The Detroit Pistons have a tough test ahead of them. On Friday, the Miami Heat will come to town, sporting a 34-11 record and riding a three-game winning streak. They've bested the Suns, Magic and 76ers over their last three games, which came following two-straight losses. They're trying to keep it rolling now with a game against Detroit, before facing a tough slate of games against Oklahoma City, Indiana and Dallas.

Detroit, on the other hand, have lost their last three outings, a couple of which have been very tough losses. They lost by a single point to the Denver Nuggets in their last outing, and prior to that fell 87-83 to the Los Angeles Clippers in overtime. They began March well, with three-straight wins from March 6 through Marc 10, but are now losers in four of their last five.

There was initial thought that LeBron James might miss some action after suffering a couple bad falls, but he's expected to play against the Cavaliers on Friday. His absence would have helped a lot, but perhaps his time will be limited with neck and elbow stiffness.

It could be a close game, given the defensive laps of the Heat lately and the fact that they haven't been as great on the road. They're just 14-9 on the road, while the Pistons are actually above .500 at home at 12-11. The game is set for 7:30 p.m. eastern on Friday.