Heat 117, Jazz 94

Walter Villa, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

MIAMI -- The Miami Heat survived an injury scare regarding forward LeBron James and defeated the Utah Jazz 117-94 Monday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.
James appeared to sprain his left ankle and left the game with 1:15 left in the third quarter. But he returned with 7:01 left in the fourth quarter and finished with a team-high 30 points.
Heat guard Dwyane Wade had 27 points, and forward Chris Bosh added 20 points.
The Heat (18-6) is now 4-1 in its past five games and is in second place in the Eastern Conference. The Jazz (6-21) has lost six of their past eight games and is in last place in the Western Conference.
Miami took control of the game in the third quarter, when it outscored Utah 36-21. Bosh was huge in the third, making all five of his shots from the field and all three of his foul shots for 13 points.
His performance overshadowed the third-quarter effort of Jazz reserve guard Alec Burks, who also had 13 points, making four of four shots from the floor. Burks had 26 points through the third quarter and finished with a career-high 31 points.
That's the most points scored this season by a Jazz player.
Helped by Burks, the Jazz had the early advantage.
Utah used 32 points off its bench to take a 50-47 lead at halftime. Burks led the Jazz with 13 first-half points, and backup center Enes Kanter added 10 points.
As a team, the Jazz had nine offensive rebounds in the first half compared to just one for the Heat.
The Heat, which led 26-20 at the end of the first quarter, fell behind by eight points in the second and trailed at intermission despite shooting 58 percent from the floor.
James (15 points) and Wade (11 points) led Miami in the first half. But the defense -- particularly in the second quarter when the Heat allowed 30 points --- was not up to Miami's high standard.
NOTES: The Jazz hope their 2013-2014 rookie crop is a memorable one. Trey Burke, taken ninth overall, could become Utah's next great point guard, a fraternity that includes John Stockton's tenure (1984-2003) and that of Deron Williams (2005-2011). ... In addition to Burke, C Rudy Gobert, taken 27th, and SG Ian Clark, undrafted, comprise the rookie crop. Gobert, 7-foot-1 and athletic, has an especially high ceiling, no pun intended. ... Heat F Michael Beasley (hamstring) missed his fifth straight game. ... Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he was fine with the 3-pointer F Chris "Birdman" Andersen took and made Saturday night against Cleveland. "I don't think he's going to shoot dribble-up-jack 3s," Spoelstra said. "In certain situations, as the ball moves inside out, it's absolutely the right shot to take. (Andersen) works on it all the time." ... Up next for Utah is its second of a five-game road trip, Wednesday at Orlando. ... Up next for Miami is a home game Wednesday against Indiana. Last week, Indiana beat the Heat 90-84.

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