Bosh, Wade carry Heat to OT win over Pelicans, 94-88
Dec. 25, 2015
MIAMI (AP) — There's no team better on Christmas than the Miami Heat.
And even in an ugly game, their future Hall of Famers delivered when it mattered most.
Chris Bosh scored 30 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, Dwyane Wade added 19 points, and the Heat survived some shaky moments late to beat the New Orleans Pelicans 94-88 in overtime on Friday — spoiling Anthony Davis' dazzling debut as part of the league's holiday lineup.
"Just an ugly game by both teams, but in this league you've got to win the pretty ones and the ugly ones," said Wade, the Eastern Conference's All-Star leading votegetter among guards so far this season. "It wasn't going right for us — Chris had it going to keep us afloat — but at the end I think it just came down to getting some great stops and we got some timely buckets."
The win moved the Heat to an NBA-best 10-2 all-time on Christmas, including seven straight wins. Bosh and Wade combined for 13 of Miami's 16 points in overtime.
"When the pressure is highest, that's when they show the most courage," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.
Hassan Whiteside had 17 rebounds for Miami, in just under 25 minutes.
Davis was stellar in his Christmas debut, leading the Pelicans with 29 points, 15 rebounds, four assists and four steals. But he missed a contested jumper on New Orleans' final possession of regulation, and the Heat controlled the extra session.
"That's why I get paid the big bucks, to win games for us down the stretch," Davis said. "I was actually missing shots in the fourth and the team actually did a good job of carrying me."
Ryan Anderson scored 18 points, including a tip-in with 1:45 left in regulation that gave New Orleans its first lead, and Eric Gordon finished with 16 for the Pelicans. Gordon's four-point play with 31 seconds left in overtime got New Orleans within four, but they got no closer.
The Heat had 18 turnovers in the game — and New Orleans scored on only one of them. Miami outrebounded the Pelicans 57-45, and Bosh had 21 of his points after halftime.
"Christmas Day against one of the best in the league," Bosh said. "I'm going to rise to the occasion."
Davis had more points than his teammates combined in the first half, the reason why New Orleans still had a shot.
New Orleans' largest first-half deficit was 13 points, which was trimmed to 42-38 going into intermission after Davis' follow-slam closed the scoring. He had 20 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and three blocks at the break — according to STATS, no player had done that in any half since at least the start of the 2002-03 season.
"None of that matters," Davis said, "because we still lost."
Pelicans: There have been two noon starts in the NBA this season and the Pelicans were the visitors in both, the other being a loss at New York. ... This was the first of three consecutive one-game trips for the Pelicans, who are back in Florida on Monday to play Orlando. ... Gordon celebrated his 27th birthday.
Heat: Miami (.833) moved past Portland (14-3, .824) for the NBA's best Christmas record. ... Miami is 9-1 against teams from the West, 8-10 against the East.
The Heat are now 10-1 when Wade plays on Christmas and only seven players in NBA history have appeared in more Dec. 25 games than the Heat star. "I've been blessed," said Wade, who ranks among the top five all-time in Christmas Day points (277), assists (70) and steals (19).
"HOME STRONG" MOMS
Miami has honored soldiers before home games for years as part of its "Home Strong" program, and Friday's instance was a family affair. Heat guards Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson presented their mothers, U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jennifer Johnson and Lt. Col. Alice Richardson, with the plaques that the team gives servicemen and women as a thank-you for service to the country.
COLE'S HOLIDAY STREAK
Pelicans guard Norris Cole, in his fifth pro season, played in his fifth Christmas Day game. His first NBA game was on Dec. 25, 2011 when he and the Heat — the team he spent parts of his first four seasons with — opened what became a championship season with a win at Dallas.
Pelicans: Host Houston on Saturday.
Heat: At Orlando on Saturday.