Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 3)

Series starts 11/16

Game 1: Friday, November 16th
Game 2: Wednesday, April 3rd
Game 3: Tuesday, April 16th

Hornets 88

(43-38, 23-18 away)

Heat 81

(35-46, 18-23 home)

    7:30 PM ET, April 16, 2002

    AmericanAirlines Arena, Miami, FL

    1 2 3 4 T
    CHA 21 22 17 2888
    MIA 18 34 19 1081

    Top Performers

    Charlotte: J. Mashburn 23 Pts, 8 Reb, 5 Ast

    Miami: A. Mourning 25 Pts, 11 Reb, 1 Blk

    Hornets pull even with Sixers for fifth in East

    MIAMI (AP) -- The Charlotte Hornets were just where they feel most comfortable -- on the road again.

    Jamal Mashburn

    Jamal Mashburn scored 23 points and sparked a fourth-quarter rally to lead the road-happy Charlotte Hornets to an 88-81 victory over the Miami Heat on Tuesday night.

    Mashburn scored 12 points in the fourth quarter to help the Hornets overcome an 11-point deficit. The Hornets pulled even with Philadelphia for the fifth playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

    Charlotte forward P.J. Brown left the game in the third quarter with a sprained left ankle and did not return.

    Brown will be held out of Wednesday's final game against Chicago but is hopeful of being ready for the playoffs.

    "It looked worse," Brown said. "I didn't feel anything pop. You just have to give it time to heal, and I don't have much of that. Hopefully I'll be ready for the playoffs."

    Brown scored nine points and had eight rebounds before leaving with 3:19 left in the third quarter.

    Jamaal Magliore scored 15 points and Lee Nailon 14, both off the bench, and George Lynch had 10 rebounds, also as a reserve.

    Alonzo Mourning scored 25 points for the Heat, and Eddie Jones added 13.

    Charlotte is the only team in the league with a better record on the road (23-18) than at home.

    "We've been successful on the road. It's all about having confidence in each other," Mashburn said.

    Miami, which has lost 11 of its last 15 games overall, finished with its first losing home record (18-23) since the 1990-91 season.

    After losing by 27 points at home to the Knicks on Sunday, the Heat managed just 10 points in the fourth quarter and shot 38 percent for the game.

    Miami shot just 4-for-22 during the fourth quarter.

    "Charlotte turned it up big-time in the last eight minutes," Heat coach Pat Riley said. "We couldn't make shots. It's the same disease all the time. We play great for three quarters, almost wire-to-wire, then go dead in the water."

    Charlotte rallied from a 77-66 deficit in the fourth quarter, putting together a 19-2 run to pull away down the stretch. Mashburn's free throws put the Hornets ahead 80-79 with 3:26 left, and his fadeaway made it 82-79 with 1:38 to go.

    Lee Nailon converted a fast-break layup and foul shot to stretch the lead to 85-79 with 45 seconds left.

    "We did not play with energy for the first three quarters," Charlotte coach Paul Silas said. "We were searching for five guys who would pick it up. We found a way to win, and that's important."

    The Hornets, with one game left, can finish anywhere from fourth to sixth in the East.

    "The Eastern Conference is wide open," Mashburn said. "It will come down to the team with the most focus, who makes the most shots and makes the stops."

    The Heat used a 34-point second quarter to turn a 21-18 deficit into a 52-43 halftime lead. Mourning had 18 points and seven rebounds in the first half.

    "The bottom line is that we didn't put together a win," Mourning said. "The fans deserve more than that. I commend them for being there and supporting us throughout the season, considering the situation. It surprised me that they gave us the kind of support they did tonight."

    Game notes

    Heat forward Brian Grant, who injured his elbow Sunday against the Knicks, missed the game and will also not play Wednesday against Orlando. ... Charlotte is the only team in the league with a better record on the road (23-18) than at home (20-20). ... With Grant out, Vladimir Stepania made only his fourth start of the season for Miami and had six points and eight rebounds ... Charlotte has won 12 of its last 19 vs. Miami. ...The Hornets swept the series 3-0, making this the first time in the 14-year history of the series that either team has won every game.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 88 81
    FGM-FGA 30-81 (.370) 31-81 (.383)
    3PM-3PA 2-13 (.154) 2-8 (.250)
    FTM-FTA 26-33 (.788) 17-25 (.680)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 18-50 12-46
    Assists 13 12
    Turnovers 12 12
    Steals 3 8
    Blocks 4 7
    Fast Break Points 4 2
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 23 (1/0) 23 (2/0)

    Top Performers

    Jamal Mashburn Mashburn
    Points: 23
    Reb: 8
    Ast: 5
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 0
    Alonzo Mourning Mourning
    Points: 25
    Reb: 11
    Ast: 0
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 1