THE FACTS: The Miami Heat defeated the New Orleans Hornets 106-90 Saturday at AmericanAirlines Arena.
The Heat were led by guard Dwyane Wade, who scored 26 points to help them end a two-game losing skid. LeBron James finished with 24 points, seven assists and five rebounds while center Chris Bosh added 13 points and six rebounds. Miami was able to overcome yet another slow start by delivering the knockout in the second quarter.
For a while, it appeared Miami was headed to once again playing down to the level of competition. The Hornets grabbed a 25-18 lead on Ryan Anderson's 3-pointer with 5:24 left in the first quarter.
The Heat closed the gap to one point at the end of the quarter before taking control in the second quarter. Miami put it away with a 12-2 run near the start of the quarter.
Anderson led the Hornets with 24 points and five rebounds.
QUOTABLE: "The motor was better. We didn't do everything right ... but the commitment on the defensive end was better than the last two games."
-- Heat coach Erik Spoelstra.
THE STAT: The Heat shot a season-high 58 percent from the field.
TURNING POINT: After a slow start, the Heat outscored the Hornets 33-15 in the second quarter and shot 76 percent (13-17) from the field.
HOT: James and Wade started by hitting 17 of their first 24 shots. After Wade got the Heat going in the first quarter, it was James who did most of the work in the second and third. The duo combined to shoot 20 of 28 from the field.
NOT: Rookie guard Brian Roberts had a rough outing off the bench, missing seven of his first eight shots. In fact, the Hornets did not receive much from any player in the backcourt, with Greivis Vasquez, Austin Rivers and Roger Mason Jr., also having quiet nights.
GOOD MOVE: The Heat finally got back to their identity, which is playing tough defense. They set the tone by holding the Hornets to 44 percent shooting and recorded a season-high 12 steals. With the exception of Robin Lopez and Ryan Anderson on the inside, the Heat were able to slow the Hornets' offense.
BAD MOVE: After a strong start by Lopez in the post, the Hornets had all sorts of problems establishing that inside dominance in the second quarter. It was then when the Heat took control of the game because the Hornets were unable to produce offensively.
NOTABLE: Udonis Haslem made his second straight start in place of Shane Battier at forward for the Heat ... James left the game in the first quarter with a groin injury but did return ... Hornets rookie Anthony Davis did not play because of a sore right ankle ... The Heat improved to 9-1 at home this season ... James has scored at least 20 points in 39 consecutive games.
UP NEXT: For the Heat, Monday vs. Hawks, Wednesday vs. Warriors, Saturday vs. Wizards. For the Hornets, Tuesday vs. Wizards, Wednesday @ Thunder, Friday vs. Timberwolves.