MIAMI — By recent Miami Heat standards, Monday night's win counts as close.
The Heat trailed early and waited until the end of the third quarter to make their move, winning by double figures for the ninth game in a row by beating New Orleans 96-84.
Dwyane Wade scored 32 points, topping 30 for the third consecutive game, and Chris Bosh added 23 points and 11 rebounds. The Heat blew the game open with an 18-2 spurt that put them up 94-77.
LeBron James had 20 points and seven assists for Miami, which became the sixth team in NBA history to win nine straight games by at least 10 points or more. And James has had a hand in two of those runs — Cleveland was the last team to do it, between Nov. 22 and Dec. 9, 2008.
Only three teams — the 2007-08 Houston Rockets, 2003-04 New Jersey Nets and 1946-47 Washington Capitols — have won 10 straight by at least 10 points, and the Heat will try to match the NBA record Wednesday against James' former team, the Cleveland Cavaliers.
David West had 26 points and 12 rebounds for the Hornets, who are 3-9 since an 11-1 start.
BULLS 92, PACERS 73: At Chicago, Carlos Boozer had 22 points and 18 rebounds, and Derrick Rose added 17 points and 12 assists as Chicago got its first six-game winning streak since Nov. 25-Dec. 8, 2006.
The 73 points was a season-low for Indiana and it was the third straight game Chicago held its opponent to a season-worst total. The Bulls held the Los Angeles Lakers to 84 points on Friday and the Minnesota Timberwolves to 82 points on Saturday.
Brandon Rush and T.J. Ford both had 13 points for Indiana.
GRIZZLIES 86, TRAIL BLAZERS 73: At Memphis, Tenn., Zach Randolph had 25 points and 20 rebounds, and Rudy Gay added 16 points to lead Memphis to its third straight win.
The victory snapped an eight-game winning streak for Portland in Memphis. The Grizzlies hadn't won a home game in the series in almost five years.
Wesley Matthews scored 18 points and Andre Miller had 14 points and nine assists for Portland, which lost its second straight after a four-game winning streak.
BUCKS 103, MAVERICKS 99: At Dallas, Brandon Jennings had 23 points and 10 assists, and Milwaukee rallied from a 20-point second-quarter deficit to end Dallas' 12-game winning streak. Andrew Bogut had 21 points and 14 rebounds, and Keyon Dooling added 16 points for the Bucks, who won their fourth in five games. Dirk Nowitzki scored 30 points and Shawn Marion had 14 for the Mavericks, who hadn't lost since Nov. 19 to Chicago. Dallas had also won eight straight at home over the Bucks.
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