Heat 81, Rockets 71
Heat 81, Rockets 71
Feb. 20, 1999
MIAMI (AP) _ The Miami Heat kept Scottie Pippen scoreless for the first 32 minutes and held Houston without a basket for 10 1/2 minutes in the second half to beat the Rockets 81-71 Saturday.
It was another display of smothering defense by the Heat, who have won five consecutive games, holding each opponent below 85 points.
Pippen finished with 10 points and one assist in 42 minutes. P.J. Brown had a season-high 24 points and 15 rebounds for Miami, and Tim Hardaway added 17 points and 11 assists despite a slow start.
With Dan Majerle guarding Pippen most of the game, the All-Star forward missed his first six shots and committed three turnovers before sinking a 3-pointer with 10 minutes left. Pippen, who began the day averaging 17 points per game, finished 2-for-10.
Othella Harrington had 17 points and Hakeem Olajuwon 16 for Houston. Miami's Alonzo Mourning was held to nine points, missing eight of 11 shots.
The Rockets, averaging 97 points per game, shot 39 percent and posted a season-low point total. Their previous season low was 86 points.
Consecutive baskets from Hardaway started a 20-2 spurt by the Heat in the second half that gave them a 62-46 lead. The Rockets missed 13 shots in a row and committed seven turnovers, and their only points during the run came on Pippen's first two points.
He finally scored with 3:41 left in the third period, hitting two free throws after a disputed call. Mourning was whistled for a foul, but television replays showed he cleanly blocked Pippen's dunk attempt.
Another 3-pointer by Pippen made it 66-61 with 6:30 left, but Mourning scored five key points down the stretch to help the Heat keep their cushion.
Notes: Houston fell to 0-7 against the Heat since Pat Riley became Miami's coach. The Rockets last beat Miami on Jan. 1, 1995 in Houston. ... Miami still trails in the series 15-10. ... The Rockets went 2-for-14 in the third period. ... Houston had won six of seven.