THE FACTS: The Miami Heat defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 103-92 Tuesday at AmericanAirlines Arena.
Despite being out-rebounded, the Heat rallied to victory after closing the first half strong and taking control in the second half behind their 3-point shooting. Guard Dwyane Wade finished with a team-high 24 points while forward LeBron James came close to a triple-double with 22 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds.
Miami trailed by nine in the first half because of the Timberwolves' strong rebounding. Minnesota, which held a 52-24 rebounding edge, had things working in its favor until the Heat regrouped just before halftime.
They outscored the Timberwolves 18-8 in the final five minutes of the second quarter to take a 52-49 lead into halftime.
Minnesota was led by Andrei Kirilenko's 22 points while Nikola Pekovic added 18 points and 12 rebounds.
QUOTABLE: "In the first quarter, I think we had three turnovers the first four minutes and then we did a nice job the rest of the quarter. After that, we didn't really take care of the ball at all."
--Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman said.
THE STAT: The Heat shot 13-of-25 from the 3-point arc.
TURNING POINT: After trailing most of the first half, the Heat went on a 13-3 run midway through the third quarter to take a 75-66 lead.
QUOTABLE II: "That is our identity, to create havoc on who we are playing and try to make them feel uncomfortable."
-- Heat coach Erik Spoelstra on the second-half defense.
HOT: And the beat goes on for Wade. He continued his strong play of late, this time getting the Heat started in the first half. When his teammates struggled, it was Wade who kept them alive with his scoring.
NOT: Despite his strong rebounding game, Kevin Love struggled from the field. He had difficulty scoring against Chris Bosh, with most of his points coming at the free throw line. Love finished 2-of-10 from the field.
GOOD MOVE: With the Heat struggling against the Timberwolves' frontcout, they decided to increase the pace. Miami used its speed to overcome a slow start and took it to another gear in the third quarter. The up tempo game opened up the Heat's 3-point shooting.
BAD MOVE: The Heat had no answer for the Timberwolves' dominance on the boards. Love had the same amount of rebounds (16) as the Heat through three quarters. It was the only way Minnesota was able to keep things close.
NOTABLE: The Timberwolves were without guard Ricky Rubio, who sat the second game of the back-to-back because of a sore knee. ... The Heat improved to 12-2 at home. ... After playing 10 of 11 at home, the Heat play five of the next seven on the road. ... Miami is 11-0 when it enters the fourth quarter with the lead.
UP NEXT: For the Heat, Thursday @ Mavericks, Saturday vs. Jazz, Tuesday vs. Thunder. For the Timberwolves, Thursday vs. Thunder, Sunday @ Knicks, Wednesday vs. Rockets.