for this game

Yao leads as Rockets cool Heat

Jan 18, 2009 - 6:36 AM By Jeremy Rakes PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

HOUSTON (Ticker) -- Yao Ming had 26 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Houston Rockets to a 93-86 win over the Miami Heat on Saturday.

Yao finished 12-for-12 from the field to set the Rockets' franchise record for most field goals made without a miss in a single game. He got help from Rafer Alston, who finished with 22 points and Von Wafer, who finished with 17 and six boards.

"I think besides Jamaal Magloire, they don't have any guys taller than 6-9, so I was able to get the ball in the post, and I had energy," Yao said. "I was close to the basket. (The perfect shooting night) doesn't happen every night, but that's the way I was playing."

Miami, which trailed for most of the game, closed within 73-69, on Daequan Cook's 3-pointer with 9:33 remaining in the fourth quarter, but that was as close the Heat would get.

Houston responded with a 9-1 run over the next 2:52 to take an 82-70 lead with 6:41 remaining on Carl Landry's jumper.

"We moved the ball well for the most part, but we turned it over way too many times," Houston coach Rick Adelman said. "Shane (Battier) did a good job of dogging (Dwyane) Wade. He's a really tough cover, but I thought our guys really followed what we wanted to do.

"They're a solid team, and they've been on a long trip, and I think that certainly helped us. It was their sixth game of the trip, so it was a win we really needed."

Miami got no closer than seven the rest of the way. The Heat are 3-3 on their current seven-game road trip and had a two-game winning streak snapped.

"They create a lot of problems on the court," Miami head coach Erik Spoelstra said. "We tried everything we could, but we couldn't stop Yao, obviously, since he was 12-of-12 from the field. He is so big, and he is poised, and with his shooting touch, sometimes he just shoots over us. They have great shooting, and they spread the floor."

Miami closed within 50-49 on Shawn Marion's jumper with 6:57 remaining in the third.

"We had good looks, but they weren't going in," Marion said. "It was an uphill battle all game. In the first half, I thought we did a good job on Yao. Yao was a handful and was very effective inside. We didn't have anyone to stop him."

Jamaal Magloire capped an 8-2 run by the Heat with a layup to cut the gap to 63-61 with 1:50 to go in the third, but Houston took a 69-64 lead into the fourth off a running jumper by Alston.

Houston led 45-36 at the half behind 15 points apiece from Yao and Wafer.

"There's no doubt if my shot is not falling from behind the arc, then I can't just settle," Wafer said. "I've got to make something happen, create other shots. That's all I try to do out there."

Dwyane Wade led the Heat with 29 points and five assists. Marion added 20 points and 10 rebounds and rookie Michael Beasley had 12 points and five rebounds.

"He was perfect from the field? That's unbelievable," Wade said of Yao's play. "He is so big, and we just didn't have anybody to guard him. If they needed a bail out, then they go to Yao, and we couldn't find any way to stop him."

  • NBA
    MIAMI 86

    Jan 17 10:47 PM

  • NBA
    MIAMI 64

    Jan 17 10:17 PM

  • NBA
    MIAMI 36

    Jan 17 9:37 PM

  • NBA
    MIAMI 21

    Jan 17 9:06 PM