A big second quarter gave LeBron James and the Heat an easy win over New Orleans on Saturday night in Miami.
Coming off a blowout loss to the New York Knicks earlier in the week, the Miami Heat took out their frustrations on the Western Conference's worst team, smoking the New Orleans Hornets, 106-90, at home. LeBron James scored 24 points as Miami grabbed a 17-point halftime lead and never looked back to end a two-game losing streak.
Saturday's game looked like it would be another weak defensive effort for the Heat, as New Orleans—which had averaged just 88 points in its last five games—lit up Miami for 32 points in the quarter and held a one-point lead. But that lead soon vanished under the onslaught of the Heat's offense. After the Hornets made it 37-31 a minute into the quarter, Miami went on a 21-4 run over the next seven minutes to blow the game open. New Orleans scored just 15 points in the quarter and made just seven shots in the period.
For Miami, it was just the second time in its last seven games that an opponent was held under 100 points. New Orleans shot the ball well, making 48 percent of its shots and 8-of-18 three-pointers. But the Heat lit it up by hitting 58 percent of its shots, 7-of-11 from three-point range, and racking up 12 steals.
Dwyane Wade was the top scorer with 26 points, and James added five rebounds and seven assists to his 24 points. Ray Allen added 11 points off the bench, including two three-pointers early in the second quarter to key Miami's run. For the Hornets, Ryan Anderson had 24 points, and Robin Lopez scored 20 to go along with eight rebounds.
Miami's next game will be Dec. 10 against Atlanta, with tip-off at 7:30 p.m. ET.