The Miami Heat once again raced out to a big lead against a team with a losing record and it was enough down the stretch to walk away with the 116-108 win against the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.
It was a perfect start to the game with a 15-0 lead representing the best start for any NBA team in a game this season. Once again, the Heat led the entire game but there’s still plenty of room for improvement with turnovers and a tendency to allow big leads to dwindle late in the game continue to be a concern — and one that could truly hurt against a good team.
With their fifth straight win, the Heat improve to 8-0 against Eastern Conference teams and 5-3 on the road.
Jimmy Butler led the Heat against his old team with 27 points on an efficient 7-10 shooting and 12-13 FT shooting along with five rebounds, seven assists and four steals. Chicago native Kendrick Nunn scored 13 points in a dominant first quarter performance, finishing with 21 points.
Chicago stormed back late in the fourth quarter once the benches had cleared and the outcome of the game supposedly set, but an 11-0 run would lead to a larger 20-6 run to cut the deficit to single digits. The Heat allowed 41 points in the quarter, the most for an opponent in a quarter this season.
Time ran out for them ultimately and the Heat made enough stops and free throws made to seal the win with an eye towards tomorrow night’s marquee matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers.