MIAMI, Nov. 9 (Ticker) -- Shaquille O'Neal
and Dwyane Wade
Miami Heat off to an unprecedented start.
O'Neal scored 20 points in 27 minutes and Wade had 22 points and
nine assists as the Heat posted a 103-93 triumph over the
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With its fourth victory in as many contests, Miami is off to the
best start in franchise history. The Heat have enjoyed easy
victories in three of their four games and used a late
second-quarter run to turn this contest into a rout.
helped key the attack for the Heat, making 8-of-9
shots, scoring 18 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. It was the
first double-double of the season for the Heat, which should
face a better test Thursday, when they host Dallas.
"I'm just so much more confident than I was last year," Haslem
said. "The big fella (O'Neal) just opens it up for us. We've
got to step up and make shots. The big fella creates angles.
Once he gets his body on somebody and creates the angles, there
is so much space."
Wade, who is averaging 27 points per game, agreed with Haslem's
"Shaq gives you confidence at both ends of the floor," Wade
said. "Everyone is playing together."
Wade and Haslem combined for 25 points on 10-of-11 shooting in
the third quarter.
"Udonis was outstanding," Miami coach Stan Van Gundy
"Dwyane was phenomenal. They are both very intelligent guys.
They are both second-year players and have about as much
basketball knowledge as anyone in the league."
scored 20 points and Antawn Jamison
chipped in 14
for Washington, which has dropped six straight to Miami,
including Saturday's 118-106 home loss.
After a basket by Jamison got Washington within 29-27 with 7:20
left in the second quarter, Miami seized control with a 10-0
spurt. Five different players had baskets for the Heat,
including Wade, who made it 39-27 with a layup with 3:41 left in
"We're playing good team ball," said O'Neal, who continues to
battle a sore hamstring.
The Wizards never got closer than seven points thereafter. They
trailed 50-37 at the break and were down by as many as 29
points in the second half.
"When you have Shaquille O'Neal on the other side, it makes
things hard to stop," said Washington center Brendan Haywood
who returned from a three-game league suspension. "He gets them
good shots. Sometimes just his presence is enough to allow
guys, like Dwyane Wade, to get easy lanes to drive."
A 20-4 run by Washington made the final score respectable.
"We again allowed 57 percent shooting and turned the ball over
20 times, which is not the sign of a very good team right now,"
Wizards coach Eddie Jordan
said. "We focused on (Wade). We
double-teamed him and tried to contain him ... (but) when you
have four or five guys who can make shots, that makes it
difficult on us."
Miami has trailed a total of just over five minutes through its
first four games.
"For 39 minutes it was a very good performance," Van Gundy said.
"We didn't guard anybody the last nine minutes."