Heat win 12th straight, outlast Kings in 2OT
MIAMI (AP) — Heat coach Erik Spoelstra summed up the efforts of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in three words: "Video game numbers," he said.
Both put up monster stat lines.
And the Miami Heat needed them.
James scored 40 points and added a career-high 16 assists, Wade had 39 points, and the Heat pushed their winning streak to 12 games by outlasting the Sacramento Kings 141-129 in double overtime on Tuesday night.
"Some great stat lines tonight," James said. "But I'm happy I was able to do what I did and help our team win."
Great stat lines might be calling it an understatement. Consider:
— A season high in scoring for James, who capped off the best shooting month of his career.
— A season high in scoring for Wade, who tied a career best with 19 field goals.
— A 36-point night for the Kings' Marcus Thornton, the most by any non-starter in the NBA this season.
— The 141 points tied a Heat franchise record, set in 1991.
— Add James' assists to the mix, and he put up the NBA's first night of at least 40 points and 16 assists since April 1994. The man who did it then? None other than Phoenix guard Kevin Johnson, now, ironically enough, the mayor of Sacramento. And for February, James finished 139 for 217 from the floor, that 64.1 percent clip the best of his career for any month.
"It was a great atmosphere," said Thornton, who made 11 of 18 shots, including 8 of 12 from 3-point range. "To be able to take that team to two overtimes just shows the testament of us growing. A team like that — championship team — they play great together. Obviously I hate losing but it was a great effort by us."
Ray Allen added 21, Chris Bosh finished with 15 and Chris Andersen had 10 for the Heat, who remained six games clear of second-place Indiana in the Eastern Conference standings.
Miami's 12-game winning streak is the longest in the NBA and matches the second-longest in franchise history.
Tyreke Evans scored 26 points for Sacramento. DeMarcus Cousins finished with 24 points and 15 rebounds, John Salmons added 15 and Isaiah Thomas 14 for the Kings, who lost their sixth straight.
"They've got a couple of guys that can turn the notch up pretty quickly," Kings coach Keith Smart said. "LeBron and Dwyane played an incredible game. It took a Superman-type game from both of those guys."
Smart said before the game that sometimes "great teams get a little bored with the regular season and they need something to get them going."
The Heat didn't seem to be bored by the second overtime.
After a late non-call that James wanted, he simply seemed mad.
James scored inside to open the second extra session, yelling "and one" at referees as his way of insisting he was fouled as well. But after one sensational sequence, the game was pretty much sealed.
Thornton had a chance to give the Kings the lead after a Heat turnover, but his shot at the rim was blocked by Wade, who came down and set up James for a 3-pointer — a five-point swing, in essence, and the Heat had a 131-127 lead. James scored again, then added two free throws and found Bosh for a dunk and 10-point lead with 1:29 remaining.
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