for this game

Hornets cruise past hapless Heat

Apr 3, 2008 - 3:00 AM MIAMI (Ticker) -- The New Orleans Hornets finished their longest road trip of the season with an easy win over the lowly Miami Heat.

David West scored 22 points and Tyson Chandler was 10-of-10 for 20 and added 10 rebounds as the Hornets cruised past the Heat, 106-77, on Wednesday.

Chris Paul chipped in 14 points and 10 assists for the Hornets, who finished 5-1 on their Eastern Conference road trip.

Chandler scored 10 quick points as the Hornets jumped to a 14-2 lead four minutes into the game and never looked back.

"It would have been very disappointing to not finish it (the trip) off the right way," Chandler said. "I just wanted to come out there and give my team some early energy because I knew it was one of those games that could be a letdown. I knew it was one of those teams you could overlook."

New Orleans held a 26-14 lead after the first quarter and led by double figures for the remainder of the half, taking a 54-41 advantage into the break.

Chandler went 6-for-6 in the first quarter and made all eight of his shots in the first half.

"From the start of the game he was ready," Hornets coach Byron Scott said of Chandler. "Tyson's energy is just on a different level than some people. I thought he brought that tonight on the offensive end especially, going for lobs, making his move down in the post."

The Hornets did not commit a turnover in the opening 24 minutes, becoming the first opponent in franchise history to not turn over the ball in the first half against the Heat.

Miami's deficit reached 19 points early in the third quarter, but it answered with a 25-10 run to close within 70-66 with 1:43 left in the period. Chris Quinn scored 11 points during the burst.

"We made a very spirited comeback and I think we cut it to six, and then we just could not get a shot to drop," Heat coach Pat Riley said. "We keep getting off to these bad starts and it is hard to recover."

But that was as close as the Heat got as the Hornets led by eight after three quarters and scored 12 of the first 13 points in the fourth to take an 86-67 lead with 6:19 to go.

That was more than enough for the Hornets to notch their franchise-best 25th road win of the season, as New Orleans outscored Miami, 32-11, in the fourth quarter.

"That's a good team," Riley said of the Hornets. "That's a real good team. I don't think I've seen that many lobs in my life. My God, they have a highlight reel tonight for a whole year."

With the win, New Orleans (52-22) moved one-half game ahead of idle San Antonio (52-23) for first place in the Western Conference. The Hornets have not made the playoffs since the 2003-04 season - when the franchise was in Charlotte - and may have lofty goals for the postseason.

"I want to advance in the playoffs," Paul said. "First I want to get to the playoffs. We've got 52 wins and we still haven't clinched a spot in the playoffs."

Quinn finished with 18 points, nine assists and seven rebounds to pace the Heat, who lost their fifth straight game.

"Obviously, I think I can do more than just shoot," Quinn said. "I think I'm capable getting guys the ball, trying to create plays for my teammates and rebounding more. Whether we are down or getting back into the game, just try to help our team any way possible."

  • RmSvc Ok I miss the 2003-04 playoff but they have been in New Orleans since 2002-03 season.

    Pelicans 106, Heat 77  FinalApr 3 2:07 AM
  • RmSvc The Hornets have not made the playoffs since the 2003-04 season - when the franchise was in Charlotte - and may have lofty goals for the postseason.

    Two thing wrong with this sentence: the last time the Hornets made the playoffs was during the 2003-04 season and their first season in New Orleans was the 2002-03 season. Check the facts.

    Pelicans 106, Heat 77  FinalApr 3 2:05 AM

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