October 20, 2020

Heat shake off slow start, beat Hornets 109-95


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New Orleans Hornets' Trevor Ariza (1) shoots as Miami Heat' Shane Battier (31) defends

MIAMI (AP) — LeBron James and Dwyane Wade each scored 22 points, Mike Miller added 14 off the bench and the Miami Heat shook off a slow start to run away from the New Orleans Hornets 109-95 on Monday night.

James added 11 rebounds and eight assists for Miami, which won for the eighth time in nine games and ended up with six players in double figures. Chris Bosh and Norris Cole each scored 12 for the Heat, and Mario Chalmers added 11.

Miami was down 45-33 midway through the second quarter, then outscored New Orleans 76-50 the rest of the way.

Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry each scored 14 for New Orleans, which lost for the 17th time in 19 games after a 2-0 start. Emeka Okafor scored 13 points and Greivis Vasquez added 11 for the Hornets, who only managed 25 rebounds — the lowest total in the NBA this season. Miami had 39 rebounds, and James had more by himself than any two Hornets combined.

There were all sorts of indicators suggesting that Miami would get off to a less-than-ideal start.

It was Miami’s third game in four nights, though all were at home. Monday’s tip-off came about 24 hours after Sunday’s down-to-the-wire epic against Chicago, where the Heat win wasn’t secure until 0.1 seconds remained. And the second night of back-to-backs have been trouble all season for Miami, which had been 3-3 in those contests — including both of its home defeats, those coming against Atlanta and Milwaukee.

So sure enough, the Heat started slowly — and found themselves in a 12-point hole against a team with the worst record in the Western Conference.

New Orleans made 10 of its first 11 shots, then used a 16-6 run in the second quarter to build what was a 45-33 lead after Xavier Henry connected on a 3-pointer. With that, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra called time-out.

Whatever he said in that huddle worked wonders.


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