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Miami at Charlotte

'Heatles' dominate; Miami wins 11th in row on road

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- On a day when LeBron James and Dwyane Wade split the Eastern Conference player of the month award, the duo delivered yet another road victory and reached a new achievement.

Yes, the Miami Heat superstars can put up big numbers together.

James scored 38 points for his 10th game of 30 or more and Wade added 31 for his ninth. But Monday night's 96-82 victory over the short-handed Charlotte Bobcats marked the first time they each topped 30 in the same game.

"To look at us in the Boston game earlier this year, we didn't know what each other was thinking," Wade said. "Now we're on the same page. Us not being able to play together is not a conversation anymore. I think we do a good job of playing off each other.

"This is what we envisioned and it's starting to come true," he said.

The memories of the terrible opening-night loss to the Celtics and the 9-8 start are fading fast as the Heat cruised to their 18th win in 19 games and 11th straight on the road.

Playing for the first time against Paul Silas, his first NBA coach in Cleveland, James scored 26 points in the second half and added nine rebounds. Wade had 18 points in the first half and grabbed 11 boards.

"I guess ESPN needs to make a show of me and D-Wade now, 30 for 30,' James joked.

With James and Wade playing like this, the Bobcats wouldn't have had much of a chance at full strength. With the lineup they put out there, they had none.

"When Wade is going and LeBron is going, you have to call it a day," Silas said.

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Charlotte played without starting forward Gerald Wallace (ankle) and center Nazr Mohammed (knee) the same day tests revealed backup big man DeSagana Diop is lost for the season with a ruptured Achilles tendon.

With Kwame Brown the only healthy center, the Bobcats fell apart offensively, missing 18 straight shots bridging the second and third quarters.

Stephen Jackson scored 22 points and D.J. Augustin added 16 for the Bobcats, who shot 38 percent from the field with 15 turnovers.

It was a day of awards for the Heat, with Wade also named the East's player of the week and Erik Spoelstra picking up the coach of the month honor.

After worrying before the game that his players might get complacent amid their hot streak, Spoelstra had some concerns early in his 200th game on the bench.

Charlotte, one of the league's worst offensive teams, shot 63 percent in the first quarter behind Jackson's 12 points. The Bobcats led by seven in the second and went up 41-35 on Gerald Henderson's hoop with 4:05 left.

But Miami clamped down defensively and by the time the Bobcats got another shot to fall -- Augustin's 3-pointer with 5:30 left in the third -- Miami led 61-51.

After the Bobcats cut a 19-point deficit to 80-69 early in the fourth quarter, James beat the shot clock by swishing a 30-footer along the left baseline while double teamed. He then stole a pass and went in for a reverse dunk on the next possession and stared at Bobcats owner Michael Jordan sitting courtside.

"When you are making them take contested shots, and [James] is hitting those, what can you do?" Jackson said. "You have to give props when props are due and they're great, man. Two of the best players in the game and they played like it."

James, who joked the Heat are referring to themselves as the "Heatles" after the Beatles for attracting big crowds on the road, helped his old coach fall to 2-2 since replacing the fired Larry Brown.

Silas said Wallace would be out a "few games" after the 2010 All-Star aggravated his ankle injury in practice Sunday. Mohammed was scratched about an hour before the game with a bruised right knee, and the Bobcats were outrebounded 46-35 in their second straight loss.

Joel Anthony had 11 rebounds to help offset an off night by Chris Bosh, who had 11 points and four rebounds on 4-of-9 shooting as Miami (27-9) matched the best 36-game start in franchise history.

"We're having a blast," James said. "We're having a good time. We're playing good basketball."

Notes

  • James on Spoelstra winning coach of the month honors: "Everybody was talking about him being on the hot seat in November to being coach of the month in December. It's kind of funny."
  • Silas, fired by the Cavaliers in 2005, defended James from the criticism for announcing his free-agent decision on national TV. "I've been on buses where the general manager gets on the bus and tells a player he's traded. They don't let him know ahead of time," Silas said.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Two of LeBron's 38 points come on a reverse slam hours after revealing the Big Three's preferred nickname: The Heatles.  (US Presswire)
Two of LeBron's 38 points come on a reverse slam hours after revealing the Big Three's preferred nickname: The Heatles. (US Presswire)

Scoreboard
Miami (27-9) «2324311896
Charlotte (11-21)2815162382
MIA:L. James 38 Pts
MIA:D. Wade 11 Reb
MIA:L. James 5 Ast
CHA:S. Jackson 22 Pts
CHA:K. Brown 7 Reb
CHA:S. Jackson 5 Ast
Players of the Game
MiamiCharlotte

LeBron James

Stephen Jackson
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
38952225
Miami
L. James, SF3715-266-695338
C. Bosh, PF344-93-542011
D. Wade, SG3112-206-6114431
C. Arroyo, PG191-20-00212
Z. Ilgauskas, C131-30-01032
J. Anthony, C351-10-011112
M. Chalmers, PG291-70-04102
J. Jones, SF202-40-03036
J. Howard, PF140-22-21002
M. Miller, SF90-20-02000
E. Dampier, CDid Not Play
E. House, SGDid Not Play
J. Magloire, CDid Not Play
U. Haslem, PFDid Not Play
D. Pittman, CDid Not Play
Totals 37-7617-1946151596
 48.7%89.5% 
Charlotte
S. Jackson, SF377-157-825222
D. Augustin, PG294-106-713016
K. Brown, C231-43-47035
G. Henderson, SG223-90-02026
B. Diaw, PF202-40-02544
S. Livingston, PG252-60-02114
D. McGuire, PF242-40-07124
T. Thomas, PF224-140-05128
D. Brown, SF193-61-24127
M. Carroll, SG131-52-22124
E. Najera, PF40-10-01000
S. Collins, PG41-10-00102
N. Mohammed, CDid Not Play
D. Diop, CDid Not Play
G. Wallace, SFDid Not Play
Totals 30-7919-2335192082
 38.0%82.6% 
Other Games
GS 90 Final
Orl 110
Min 93 Final
Bos 96
Phi 77 Final
NO 84
Hou 106 Final
Den 113
Det 97 Final
Utah 102