The Knicks, who trailed from the outset, whittled that 22-point deficit all the way to three points, but could get no closer as Miami held on for a 106-98 victory at American Airlines Arena.
Dwayne Wade was spectacular for Miami, scoring a season-high 40 points. Wade hit a key three-pointer and LeBron James (18 points) made a driving layup to help Miami hold off a spirited Knick rally. Wade also had 15 fourth-quarter points.
The Knicks (18-13) spotted the Heat a 16-point lead after one quarter, trailing, 34-18, and spent the rest of the game trying to overcome that poor start.
“I told the guys, a 22-point lead against the Knicks is similar to a seven- or eight-point game against a normal team,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “They kept on coming … and that’s what they do.”
Amare Stoudemire had 30 points for the Knicks. He has now scored 20 or more points in 16 straight games, the longest such streak since Patrick Ewing’s 17 consecutive games from January 8 – February 6, 1994.
Miami’s biggest edge in this game was in rebounding, where they held a 50-32 advantage. James, Chris Bosh and Zydrunas Ilgauskas all had 10 rebounds for the Heat, who are now 24-9.