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(Tuesday, January 7th)
Final Score: Miami 107, New Orleans 88
Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - LeBron James scored 32 points and the Miami Heat used a big second half to run away from the New Orleans Pelicans, 107-88, on Tuesday.
Dwyane Wade added 22 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for Miami, which outscored the Pelicans 64-39 in the final 24 minutes after trailing by six at halftime. Chris Andersen added 15 points off the bench on 7-of-7 shooting.
The Heat were without starters Mario Chalmers (Achilles) and Shane Battier (quad). Both players are considered day-to-day.
Anthony Davis had 22 points and 12 rebounds in the losing effort. Eric Gordon and Tyreke Evans contributed 15 and 13 points, respectively, as New Orleans lost for the third time in four games.
The Pelicans turned a 49-43 halftime lead into an 11-point edge early in the third quarter, but the Heat responded to tie it at 59 at 5:49. James and Chris Bosh made jumpers around a Rashard Lewis layup to erase the deficit.
James capped his 19-point period with a finger roll with less than five seconds to play.
"I was able to get into a good rhythm and just try to keep it going and regain some momentum," James said of his third-quarter performance.
Brian Roberts charged down and banked in a runner as the buzzer sounded, but the defending champs had a 75-70 advantage through 36 minutes.
The Pelicans never recovered from their third quarter collapse. Ray Allen hit a 3 to open the fourth, and Andersen's layup made it 84-72 with 8:52 to play. The lead never reached single digits after that.
"We lost some fight when they got the lead," Davis said. "We didn't have that focus."
Miami led 25-24 after the first but found itself trailing 36-29 a few minutes into the second. Wade's reverse layup knotted the score at 38-all before New Orleans went on another run, which Gordon capped with five straight points in the final minute of the half. It was 49-43 before Bosh drew a foul and made three free throws with 0.2 on the clock for the halftime margin.
The Heat improved to 9-1 when James scores 30 or more points this season ... Bosh totaled 12 points and nine rebounds, and Allen had nine points off the bench ... Miami has won three straight and five of six ... The Heat outscored New Orleans 50-40 in the paint.
01/08 01:23:23 ET