Helps Miami continue winning streak against Wolves
HASSAN Whiteside delivered his 11th straight double-double as the Miami Heat continued their hot streak with a wire-to-wire 123-105 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday.
Miami have made a stunning turnaround from the team that struggled to an 11-30 to start the season as they have won 23 of their last 28 games for the best record in the NBA over that stretch.
The Heat like Whiteside’s offence but coach Erik Spoelstra said he was also a force on defence.
“It felt like (Whiteside) had seven or eight blocks,” Spoelstra said. “And that’s the most important thing — that they feel his size, that they feel his presence, that they feel his impact at the rim and in the paint.”
Whiteside finished with 23 points and 14 rebounds as his 11th consecutive double-double tied a Heat franchise record, set by Rony Seikaly in 1991-92.
Tyler Johnson scored 23 off the bench for Miami who are also 15-1 in their last 16 games at home.
But the win could prove to be costly as Miami lost starting shooting guard and third leading scorer Dion Waiters to an ankle injury.
He left the game with 3:24 left in the second quarter and did not return. The good news is that X-rays showed he did not suffer a fracture.
Waiters got hurt while driving to the rim and landing on the foot of a Minnesota defender. Waiters had six points when he left the game.
Goran Dragic scored 19 points and added 10 assists for Miami.
Elsewhere, John Wall set a career high with 20 assists and Bradley Beal scored 24 points as the Washington Wizards bounced back from a rare home loss with a 112-107 win over the Chicago Bulls.
In New York, Jae Crowder collected a season-high 24 points and 12 rebounds and the Boston Celtics overcame the absence of star point guard Isaiah Thomas and held on for a 98-95 victory over the Brooklyn Nets. AFP
Wolves’ Andrew Wiggins (No 22) goes up for a layup during the NBA game against Miami Heat on Friday.