Heat use unprecedented surge to topple Knicks
Miami, FL (Sports Network) – Jason Kapono scored 13 of his 22 points during a
franchise-record 27-point run in the first quarter as the Miami Heat downed
the New York Knicks, 101-83, despite not having guard Dwyane Wade and center
Shaquille O’Neal in the lineup.
Wade missed the contest with a sprained left ankle, while O’Neal sat out his
34th consecutive game as he recovers from knee surgery. Wade is considered
day-to-day, while O’Neal could also return any time soon.
Jason Williams added 20 points and seven assists and Udonis Haslem had 19
points and 10 boards for Miami, which ended a two-game slide. Gary Payton
tallied 10 points, a season-high 13 assists and six boards and Alonzo Mourning
had 10 points, seven rebounds and four blocks for the Heat, who led by as many
as 28 points in the first half before needing a late run to hold off the pesky
Eddy Curry had 26 points to lead New York, which has lost three of four. The
Knicks’ four other starters combined to score just 12 points with forwards
Channing Frye and Jared Jeffries going scoreless. Jamal Crawford added 23
points and nine assists off the bench for the Knicks, who have lost eight of
nine to Miami.
The Heat built a sizeable lead in the first quarter, thanks to the largest run
in franchise history. After New York’s Quentin Richardson gave the Knicks a
3-2 lead on a three-pointer, Miami took control by scoring the next 27 points.
Haslem’s bucket began the surge, giving Miami the lead for good, and he ended
it with another basket inside the four-minute mark for a 29-3 cushion.
Kapono scored 13 points during the run, which allowed the Heat to cruise into
the second with a 40-12 lead following Williams’ three-pointer at the buzzer.
The Heat continued to cruise through the second quarter, leading by 22 points,
48-26, midway through the stanza and 15, 56-41, going into halftime.
New York started to gain ground late in the third quarter. Down 77-58 with two
minutes left in the stanza, the Knicks bridged the final two quarters with a
14-2 run that eventually drew the club within 79-73. A Renaldo Balkman bucket
made it a 77-64 contest after three quarters, while Curry’s three-point play
just under four minutes into the fourth ended the surge.
Miami, though, had an answer as James Posey hit a long-range jumper and Haslem
connected to increase the lead back to 10 points, 83-73. Williams later hit a
trey to make it an 88-77 contest with just over five minutes left. He then
connected from long range again to increase the cushion to 91-79 with 4 1/2
minutes to go.
New York never threatened after that, running out of gas down the stretch.
Richardson and Stephon Marbury, the other two New York starters, scored six
points each…Antoine Walker had 10 points for the Heat…These two teams have
split the two games this season…The 40-point first quarter was the best of
the season for Miami…Miami got its first win without Wade in the lineup this
season, improving to 1-6.