Chalmers hits 10 3-pointers as Heat rout Kings
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Often overlooked on the star-laden Miami Heat, Mario Chalmers came up big against the Sacramento Kings.
Chalmers had career highs with 10 3-pointers and 34 points to lead the Heat to a 128-99 victory over the Kings on Saturday night. Chalmers' 3s tied Brian Shaw's franchise record and set the new mark at Sacramento's Sleep Train Arena as he finished 10 of 13 from 3-point territory.
"He had it going and we kept finding him. Mario was awesome," LeBron James said. "He was knocking down shots all game."
And that included the fourth quarter, when the Heat led by more than 30 points and the only suspense was whether Chalmers would exceed his career-high for points and break the Heat 3-point record.
Chalmers came back in the game midway through the fourth quarter and made two more 3s to tie Shaw's mark. But he never got off another 3 and left the game after playing just under three minutes in the quarter.
"I asked him (Heat coach Erik Spoelstra) to put me back in. I knew what the record was," Chalmers said. "I wanted to get one more to beat it."
It was a nice bounce-back game for the Heat, who had dropped two straight and five of eight since Dec. 26. They led by 22 points at the half and outscored the Kings 37-29 in the third quarter in cruising to the lopsided victory.
James had 20 points, seven assists, five steals and two blocks for the Heat, who had a season-high point total. Miami hadn't topped 100 points in its previous four games.
Chris Bosh had 16 points, Mike Miller had 12 and Dwyane Wade added 11 for Miami, which shot 56 percent and was 17 for 37 on 3s.
The Heat also had a season-high 35 assists and played well defensively, finishing with 11 steals and 11 blocks — including four by Wade. Miami pestered the Kings into 17 turnovers that led to 34 points.
"For the most part we played to our identity, aggressive at both ends of the court," Spoelstra said. "It was good to get a game like this anywhere, home or away. It was good to see our team put its foot down on the pedal and keep it down."
Isaiah Thomas made six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 34 points for the Kings, who dropped their fourth straight. DeMarcus Cousins had 11 points and eight rebounds, and James Johnson also scored 11.
"The Heat is a heck of a team and you have to pick your poison when you play them," said Thomas, who had 24 points in the second half. "Do you want to stop LeBron or D-Wade or do you want to stop the other players? It's hard to defend them. But at home we could have done a lot better."
The Heat have struggled on the road this season and had lost four of five entering the game. But Sacramento has been a successful road venue for the Heat, who have won seven of their last eight visits and evened their road record this year to 8-8.
"Obviously this game got away from us in the first quarter," Kings coach Keith Smart said. "The game was over in the first five minutes for the most part. With this team you can't make mistakes. They were a little bit hungry."
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