Heat Check: Complete effort propels Miami to big road win
The Miami Heat had their most impressive game of the season on both ends of the floor in their 105-96 blowout victory against the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday night.
Not only did the Heat (5-2) notch their second victory in as many nights, they did it on the road against a quality opponent with a complete team effort featuring season-best performances from Luol Deng (30 points, five rebounds, four assists), Josh McRoberts (four points, eight rebounds, two assists) and Mario Chalmers (18 points, four assists).
Chris Bosh (20 points, 10 rebounds, five assists) and Dwyane Wade (20 points, 10 assists) paced the Heat by continuing their consistent play since the beginning of the season.
Just like Saturday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Heat raced out to a big early with Deng leading the charge by scoring 11 points in the opening quarter. Miami notched nine assists for the period and scored 11 straight points to take a nine-point lead at the end of the first quarter that they would not relinquish.
Against a good team, the defense was on par with the offense, helping to build a large lead and keeping the Mavericks from threatening with a comeback. Dallas shot 42 percent from the field against a Heat defense that was active in the paint and on the perimeter.
An 11-2 run by Dallas to open the third quarter cut Miami’s lead down to four, but the Heat responded with nine straight points. A big run by the Heat to start the fourth quarter produced their biggest lead of the night at 21.
THE TURNING POINT
Playing some of their best offense of the season during the second quarter to blow the game open, the Heat increased their lead by sharing the ball and finding the open man. Deng and Wade were the recipient of many of those passes, cutting to the basket while Bosh was hitting midrange shots.
THE DIFFERENCE MAKER
Deng surpassed his season average of 13.2 points by halftime with 15 points. His outside shot was deadly but he was also able to score by driving to the rim and cutting to the basket without the ball.
STAT OF THE GAME
The Heat recorded 31 assists on their 42 field goals.
The Heat will face the Indiana Pacers at AmericanAirlines Arena on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.