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Five Stars: Heat 98, Nuggets 95

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Miami had three of the top five players against the Nuggets on Friday night, including Hassan Whiteside and his second triple-double of the season.

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

First Star

Hassan Whiteside (MIA) 25.8 (80.46)

Whiteside extended his shot-block season lead out to 57 over second place Serge Ibaka with 11 on the night in 38:29. Miami's second-year starting center (and four-year veteran) scored 19 points on eight-of-13 shooting, making three-of-five from the line with two assists and a steal. He earned a plus-13 rating for the night, grabbing six offensive and 11 defensive rebounds for his second triple-double of the season. This was his 22nd appearance on the Five Stars.

I told Coach when I got on the bus my knee felt the best it's felt since I injured it. I told him, `Don't limit my minutes. I'm back to that athletic Hassan you know.' - Whiteside

Second Star

Chris Bosh (MIA) 17.2 (65.21)

Bosh, Miami's 13-year veteran and starting power forward, scored a game-high 24 points on nine-of-13 shooting in 31:39. He made one-of-two from deep and five-of-six from the stripe, with three assists, three rebounds, and a blocked shot. Bosh was the only Heat starter to finish with a negative plus-minus on the night, ending up at minus-5 in his 27th Five Star appearance.

At lunchtime today, talking to Chris about what I was going to do, he said, `Take it off.' That made my decision a lot easier. - Wade, on Bosh talking him into taking the night off.

Third Star

Darrell Arthur (DEN) 17.1 (67.50)

Arthur earned Denver's top spot for the night by leading his team with 18 points on a crisp eight-for-12 from the field. He made two-of-two from the line with eight rebounds, two steals, an assist and a minus-5 rating in 30:24 in total.

First half we were shooting 55 percent, so to go all the way down to 41 percent meant our offense was stagnant. - Nuggets coach Michael Malone

Fourth Star

Beno Udrih (MIA) 15.5 (50.24)

Udrih cracks the Five Stars for only the second time with Miami this season, playing 37:01 in a rare start at point guard. The 12-year veteran had 11 points and a season- and game-high 11 assists, earning a game-high plus-14 rating. Udrih made five-of-10 from the field and one-of-two from outside, with three rebounds and a steal.

Fifth Star

Emmanuel Mudiay (DEN) 12.1 (56.61)

Mudiay, Denver's first round pick prior to this season, came off the bench to score 16 for the Nuggets in 25:39. Mudiay made five-of-11 overall, two-of-three from deep, and all four of his foul shots for 16 total points. He earned a plus-4 rating on the night, also contributing with four assists, a blocked shot and a rebound.

The Rest

Tyler Johnson (MIA) 11.9 (46.56)

Kenneth Faried (DEN) 11.0 (50.32)

Nikola Jokic (DEN) 10.7 (72.67)

Luol Deng (MIA) 7.7 (23.98)

Will Barton (DEN) 7.4 (32.31)

Jameer Nelson (DEN) 6.9 (27.15)

Justise Winslow (MIA) 5.8 (29.81)

Amar'e Stoudemire (MIA) 4.7 (88.54)

Gary Harris (DEN) 4.1 (13.10)

Danilo Galinari (DEN) 3.6 (11.51)

Randy Foye (DEN) 0.3 (5.19)

Sean Kilpatrick (DEN) 0.0 (0.00)

Josh Richardson (MIA) -0.9 (-10.35)

Gerald Green (MIA) -1.4 (07.15)

Five Stars Standings

Chris Bosh

186

Dwyane Wade

149

Hassan Whiteside

123

Goran Dragic

64

Luol Deng

34

Gerald Green

34

Tyler Johnson

32

Beno Udrih

9

Justise Winslow

5

Josh McRoberts

4

With his performance, Udrih broke his eighth place tie with Justise Winslow, while Whiteside in third place gained 10 points on idle Dwyane Wade. Bosh could take the rest of the month easy and still probably head into the all-star break with a lead.

Thanks for reading the Five Stars. For more on the Nuggets, Denver Stiffs has your poison. Next up for the Heat, a Sunday evening game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Read more on them at Welcome to Loud City.