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Wade, Chalmers make night miserable for 76ers

Nov 6, 2008 - 4:32 AM MIAMI (Ticker) -- Dwyane Wade almost did it all Wednesday. A pair of rookies took care of the rest.

Wade put together a dominant performance on both ends of the floor to give the Miami Heat a 106-83 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers.

The superstar guard filled up the stat sheet with 29 points, seven rebounds, six assists, five steals and three blocks as Miami took control early and never looked back.

Finally appearing healthy this season for the first time in two years, Wade was back to his old self, persistently forcing contact with penetration and dropping back for a variety of fall-aways and pull-ups. He finished 9-of-15 from the floor and 11-of-13 from the free-throw line.

"We are trying to incorporate a new style and new faces so there is an understanding that it is going to take some time, but I can't forget about No. 3," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "He has to be in places where he is more comfortable and we got him in places he really felt comfortable and guys could play off of him."

But he wasn't alone in his efforts, as the Heat put together their most impressive performance of the young season. Wade's new backcourt mate, first-year point guard Mario Chalmers, set a league rookie record with nine steals, while rookie forward Michael Beasley posted 17 points and nine boards.

"To me, (Chalmers) was the steal of the draft," Heat forward Udonis Haslem said. "I don't understand how he went in the second round. He has like a seven-foot wingspan at the point guard position that causes him to get his hands on a lot of balls and create a lot of deflections and steals for us."

The Sixers, who have struggled put of the gate as expectations have risen, were completely out of sync, turning the ball over 26 times. Chalmers and Wade were right there to clean up the mess.

"Defense, energy and the low turnovers in the first half gave us a lot more opportunities," Wade said. "Defensively, we were putting them in position where (there were) tough passes to make, and we have guys that can make plays on the defensive end."

Chalmers' nine steals also set a single-game franchise record for the Heat, surpassing Tim Hardaway's record of eight set against the Atlanta Hawks on December 20, 1997.

"I can't take all the credit for the steals," Chalmers said. "I have to [give] it to my teammates for applying good pressure and making the opponent want to give up the ball."

"That was unreal. All of them were his steals," Wade said. "He got them all. To get nine steals was fabulous."

The Sixers tried to sneak into contention early in the fourth quarter, as a 6-0 run pulled them to within single digits at 78-69.

But Wade and Beasley responded and put the game away. Beasley's jumper sparked a 12-0 run, and Wade added a three-point play as the Heat pushed their lead to 90-69.

"Sometimes I find myself spectating," Beasley said. "The things he does (are) just amazing."

Miami started the game with an 11-2 run, then used a 13-2 spurt in the second quarter to take a 51-27 advantage.

Philadelphia was plagued early by 16 first-half turnovers and Andre Iguodala was limited to just six minutes in the first half due to foul trouble as the Heat led 59-38 at the break.

"We turned the ball over every chance we got," Sixers coach Maurice Cheeks said. "They got a lot of layups in the first half. That's really how the game went."

The Sixers pulled within 65-56 in the third quarter after Andre Miller's short jumper, but that's as close as they could get the rest of the way.

"We kind of ran out of gas," Sixers forward Elton Brand said. "In that third quarter we fought so hard to get back in it, they're not going to miss shots the entire game, so if we started off with that kind of intensity we would have been fine."

Offensive production continues to be a point of contention for the Sixers, who have averaged 120.5 points in their two victories but have struggled to put points on the board otherwise. In their three losses, they have averaged just 85.0 points.

Iguodala went just 1-of-7 from the floor for two points. Thaddeus Young led Philadelphia with 19, including 17 in the first half. Brand - whose offseason addition is one of the primary reasons for the Sixers' optimism - added 12 points and 12 rebounds.

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