User ID
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Betting Tools

Heat win 25th straight, pound Pistons by 14

New customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

MIAMI (AP) - It's becoming almost commonplace now, this trend of the Miami Heat getting off to slow starts and having to dig their way back from double-digit deficits.

Apparently, they do not mind.

LeBron James scored 29 points, Dwyane Wade added 19 and the Heat extended their winning streak to 25 games by pulling away in the second half and beating the Detroit Pistons 103-89 on Friday night.

Miami trailed by as much as 11 in the first half before moving within eight of tying the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers for the longest winning streak in NBA history. The Heat also won at home for the 16th straight time.

``We don't get caught up in things like that, saying that we're untouchable,'' said James, who also finished with eight assists and eight rebounds. ``We know we can be beat by anybody, any night, if we don't come in with the mindset to play our game.''

Maybe they don't always come in with that mindset in perfect order, but the Heat clearly find a way to get to that place. Just this week alone, they rallied from 17 points down to win at Boston, then pulled off the wild 27-point, second-half comeback to prevail at Cleveland.

No real dramatics were needed Friday, especially after Miami allowed only 35 points after halftime.

``We were a little flat in the first half,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ``But in the second half, the urgency was much better, created a lot more opportunities off of our defense. I liked the way we finished the game.''

Miami's magic number for clinching the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference is now three. The Heat also remained 1 1/2 games up on San Antonio, which needed overtime to beat Utah, for the league's best record.

Greg Monroe finished with 23 points and 15 rebounds for Detroit, which dropped its 10th straight game. Jose Calderon had 18 points and seven assists, most of that coming in the first half for the Pistons, who also got 18 points and eight rebounds from Kyle Singler.

``The effort was there,'' Calderon said. ``I thought we played pretty for almost the whole game. When they came out for the second half, they looked like a different team out there. ... They tweaked their game plan and it was a bit more difficult to make some baskets. They were more aggressive.''

That's because they had to be that way. James said Detroit caught Miami off-guard in the first half with some sets. A quick halftime adjustment or two, and the reigning champions looked like reigning champions again.

``It doesn't matter who we're playing. This time of year, it's going to be a dangerous team,'' Spoelstra said. ``It's going to be a team absolutely urgent, desperate for a playoff position or a team with nothing to lose, no pressure. Either way, you have to impose your will.''

That did not happen, at least not in the early going.

For the fifth time in the last six games, the Heat trailed after the first quarter. Detroit made 12 of its first 18 shots - 67 percent - and took a 28-20 lead fueled by an 8-0 run late in the opening period.

Detroit's lead went to 11 in the second quarter, with Calderon making all three of his field-goal attempts, all from 3-point range. He wound up with 16 points and six assists at halftime, just the second player to have a first-half stat line like that against the Heat this season. There were times it seemed Detroit was getting whatever it wanted.

Nonetheless, the Heat were down just 54-51 at the break.

``You knew they were going to make a run,'' Monroe said. ``That's what this league is all about. It's about withstanding them.''

On that front, the Pistons couldn't keep pace. Detroit scored 28 points in the first quarter, 26 more in the second - and 22 in the first 19 minutes of the second half.

A lull like that was just too much to overcome, especially when the Heat took off on a 19-8 run to start the fourth quarter and put away the game.

After getting fouled in the open floor and playfully crashing into the basket support midway through the fourth, James took a playful swing at Wade and clearly seemed relaxed even though the Heat were up by only nine.

It was like he knew the capper was on the way. When play resumed, James set Wade up for a basket that gave Miami its first double-digit lead of the night, then threaded a pocket pass to Chris Bosh for a three-point play and a 90-76 lead with 5:47 remaining.

James walked to the far end of the floor, popped out his mouth guard and watched the replay on the overhead video board, then exhaled deeply.

``We were in our groove, both offensively and defensively,'' James said. ``I kind of felt like it was at a point where we could kind of break it open.''

The streak lived. Again.

NOTES: Heat G Ray Allen got three stitches in his lower lip. The Heat aren't sure if he will miss any game time. Miami next plays Sunday at home against Charlotte. ... James picked up his fourth straight Eastern Conference player of the month award, this one for February, in a brief halftime ceremony. ... The Heat signed F Juwan Howard for the remainder of the season Friday. ... South Florida native Brandon Knight (left ankle) remained sidelined for Detroit. ... The Heat played a tribute video to the Atlantic Coast Conference champion Miami Hurricanes during the game, along with highlights of their NCAA tournament win from earlier Friday. ... Pistons reserve Kim English fouled out with 23.5 seconds left in the third quarter with no points in 12:05 of playing time. The only other players with a zero-point, six-foul night in fewer minutes this season are New York's Kurt Thomas (9:40) and Toronto's Amir Johnson (9:26). ... Golf's Greg Norman was in attendance, along with child abuse prevention advocate Lauren Book, who's on her annual awareness walk from Key West to Tallahassee.

The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2015
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

Kobe announces he will retire after season
Clips beat Wolves for 13th straight time
Walker scores 22, Hornets hold off Bucks
76ers rookie Okafor apologizes for choices
Hornets C Jefferson out with calf strain
Newton's odyssey to Wolves GM special
Why Buy Picks From
NBA Pro Basketball Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NBA Hot Streaks
8-3 L11 Picks, 6-2 L8 G-Plays
9-4 Record Last 13 Picks
6-3 L9, 40-22 L62, +1,388 TY
3-0 Y'day, 19-9 L28, 30-16 L46
10-4 Record This Season
6-3 LN, 10-5 L15, 13-6 L19 Picks
7-2 L9 Guaranteed Plays
4-0 NBA Win Streak
2-0 Y'day, 5-1 Last 5 Days
7-3, +440 L10 Selections
3-0 Last Night, 6-1 Guarantee Run
7-3 NBA Picks This Year
3-0 Streak, 6-2 Last 5 Days
3-1 Yesterday, 5-2 Last 7 Picks
4-0 L4, 10-4 This Season
NBA Pro Basketball Expert Sports Picks - Chip Chirimbes
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Chip Chirimbes + 1388
Paul Bovi + 580
Joe Nelson + 560
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 490
Kevin Rogers + 460
Dave Cokin + 400
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Paul Bovi 71 %
Joe Nelson 71 %
Kyle Hunter 70 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Chip Chirimbes + 450
Kyle Hunter + 378
Jimmy Boyd + 372
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kyle Hunter + 598
Vince Akins + 466
Antony Dinero + 442
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Chip Chirimbes + 540
The Gold Sheet + 509
Joe Nelson + 400
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership