Miami turns up the heat on Hornets
Miami, FL (Sports Network) – Eddie Jones scored a game-high 19 points and
grabbed eight rebounds, leading the Miami Heat to a 93-63 pounding of the New
Orleans Hornets in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series at
Caron Butler added 18 points and nine rebounds for the Heat, who posted a
thrilling 81-79 win in the opener and now own a two games to none lead in the
best-of-seven series. The scene now shifts to New Orleans Arena for Game 3 on
“We did a great job of playing our game,” Jones said. “It was important for us
to get these two home wins. You can’t let a team get one at your home.”
Brian Grant had a strong performance for Miami with 15 points and a game-high
11 rebounds. Dwyane Wade, who finished third in Rookie of the Year voting, had
14 points for Miami, which has never lost a post-season series after winning
Games 1 and 2.
Baron Davis was the only Hornet in double figures with 13 points to go along
with seven assists and six boards. Jamaal Magloire posted nine points and 10
rebounds for New Orleans, which suffered the second lowest output in NBA
playoff history thanks to an abysmal 24 percent shooting for the game (20-
Miami set the tone early as Butler’s basket almost five minutes into the game
staked the Heat to a 12-5 advantage. Jones was later fouled beyond the arc
with three minutes left in the quarter and made all three free throws for a
24-15 Miami lead. The Heat led by a 28-17 score after 12 minutes.
“I was not surprised at all that the Heat came out so strong,” New Orleans
coach Tim Floyd said. “I credit Miami and the great job they have done
defensively. They have really been outstanding in this series.”
New Orleans opened the second quarter with a 9-2 run, culminated by two free
throws by Davis, to pull within four at 30-26. The Hornets got no closer the
rest of the half and trailed 43-34 at the intermission.
The Heat turned it on in the second half, scoring 17 of the first 21 points of
the third quarter for a comfortable 60-38 lead. Wade had six points in the
surge and capped it with a basket with less than five minutes to go. Jones
added seven points during the run.
Miami outscored the Hornets by a 23-10 margin in the third period and carried
a 66-44 advantage into the final stanza.
Grant buried a 15-foot jumper with about 7 1/2 minutes remaining in the game
and the Heat had a 75-55 cushion. Miami later made it an 87-61 contest thanks
to a two-handed jam by Butler with 2:28 to go. New Orleans never regrouped and
will prepare for Game 3 at home on Saturday.
“They are a great team and we are going into their home court,” Wade said of
the upcoming Game 3. “No one is going to lay down in this series.”