MIAMI (AP) -- Eddie Jones says the Miami Heat need to give their fans a reason to keep showing up, and the crowd had plenty to cheer
about Saturday night.
Miami shot a season-high 54 percent and reached triple figures for only the second time this season -- and the second time this week -- to beat the Indiana Pacers 100-88.
Jones scored 23 points for the Heat, who won their fourth consecutive game, a season high. The crowd roared when he sank a free throw with 17 seconds left to give Miami 100 points at home for the first time in 26 games, dating to March 21.
The Heat improved to 5-13 at home.
"We've got to get better here," Jones said. "We've got to give the crowd something to keep showing up for."
The Pacers, mired in a season-high five-game losing streak, fell to .500. They played without starters Jermaine O'Neal (left knee) and Jamaal Tinsley (hip and elbow).
"Those are two studs for us," coach Isiah Thomas said. "It's tough for any team in the NBA to win with two starters out. But we can't let this thing continue to slide, even if we are short-handed."
Brian Grant had 12 points and 10 rebounds for Miami. Rod
Strickland had a season high in assists for the second game in a
row with 13 and added nine points.
"The ball is moving excellent," Jones said. "We're getting
open looks all over the floor."
The Heat had 29 assists, outrebounded the Pacers 49-39 and outscored them in the paint 42-32.
"What didn't I like about tonight?" coach Pat Riley said with a chuckle. "I can't think of anything."
Indiana was playing for the second night in a row, and Miami was
playing after a day off following a four-game West Coast trip. But
the Heat were sharp from the start.
In the first nine minutes Miami went 12-for-15 with one turnover and raced to a 29-16 lead. The margin reached 49-34 in the second quarter.
The Heat shot 62 percent in the first half, their season high
for a half.
"Our defense wasn't the way it can or should be," Rose said. "Any time you allow a team to shoot 62 percent in the first half, a team that has a bad history of scoring 100 points, there's no excuse."
Miller didn't score until the opening minute of the second half,
then scored seven consecutive points to cut the deficit to 63-55.
Kendall Gill answered with eight points in a row to rebuild the
margin to 71-57.
Indiana scored 10 consecutive points, including 3-pointers by
Rose and Miller, to close to 88-81 with six minutes left, but the
Pacers got no closer. Jones then sank three consecutive shots,
including a 3-pointer, to make it 95-83.
Game notes Tinsley bruised his left elbow and hip Friday against
Detroit. His status is day to day. ... The Heat have only five home games in January.
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