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Scorching Heat welcome Kings to South Beach
(Sports Network) - The Miami Heat are hitting on all cylinders and will try to keep it in gear Tuesday versus the Sacramento Kings in the continuation of a three-game homestand at AmericanAirlines Arena.
The defending champion and Southeast-leading Heat extended their season high winning streak to 11 games with a 109-105 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Heat blew a 22-point lead (68-46) and rallied from eight down in the final quarter to post their ninth consecutive home win.
Dwyane Wade scored 15 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter, while LeBron James led all scorers with 28 points and eight assists. Wade's dunk with under 25 seconds to go made it 105-101.
"It was good for us to show some resiliency down the stretch," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "They kept on coming at us. We had to fight for it."
Mario Chalmers chipped in 16 points to help Miami become the first Eastern Conference team to 40 wins (40-14). The Heat, who won 12 in a row from Nov. 29-Dec. 18, 2010, are 24-2 in South Beach and 12-1 as the host against teams from the West. Miami is 25-2 this season when shooting at least 50 percent from the field.
Miami will close out the homestand Friday versus Memphis.
Sacramento is mired in a five-game losing streak and has dropped eight in a row on the road. It will resume a five-game road trip Tuesday.
The Kings dropped a 110-95 decision to the New Orleans Hornets on Sunday as John Salmons sizzled from 3-point range, making a career-high 6-of-7 shots, and finished with 18 points. He was one of six players to score in double figures. Jason Thompson, DeMarcus Cousins and Isaiah Thomas had 16 points apiece with Cousins pulling down 10 rebounds.
Cousins owns three double-doubles in his past four games, averaging 17.5 points and 10.8 rebounds.
"I thought that we played a great game up until about five minutes and twenty- three seconds," said Kings coach Keith Smart. "I thought that we were able to keep all of the big threes out of the basketball game, like the last time that we were here."
Smart, though, was disappointed with how many missed shots inside his team accumulated and felt the margin would have been a lot closer. The Hornets had a 100-85 advantage with less than six minutes to go in the game and later led by as many as 20 points.
The Kings have been shooting well from beyond the arc, making 24-of-41 the last two games, and are 5-25 outside of California's capital city. Sacramento still has Orlando and San Antonio on the upcoming road docket.
Sacramento dropped a 128-99 decision to the Heat at home on Jan, 12 in the first meeting between the teams. Mario Chalmers tied a franchise record by connecting on 10 3-pointers en route to a career-high 34 points, while Thomas finished with a career-best 34 points.
Miami has won eight straight, 16 of 17 and 17 of the last 20 matchups with Sacramento, which has lost 10 straight and 15 of its last 16 at Miami.
02/26 11:02:40 ET
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