Heat burn Lakers in Christmas showdown

LOS ANGELES, (Reuters) – The Miami Heat gave their   fans some Christmas cheer with a dominating 96-80 victory over   the Los Angeles Lakers yesterday.
LeBron James collected 27 points, 11 rebounds and 10   assists, while Chris Bosh added 24 points and 13 rebounds to   ensure it would not be a happy holiday for the Lakers (21-9),   who have now been blown out in two consecutive games.
The Lakers were hammered 98-79 by Milwaukee on Tuesday.
“I don’t care if we lose by 20 or by one — I just don’t   like to lose,” Kobe Bryant told reporters. “I’m just upset   with how we’re playing. These games mean more to our opponents   than they do us and we need to correct that.”
Bryant struggled to break down a stifling Miami defense   and finished with just 17 points on 6-of-16 shooting.
Miami (23-9) seized the lead midway through the first   quarter and never trailed after that, holding Los Angeles to   40 percent shooting for the game.
The Christmas Day meeting between the Lakers and Heat had   been much anticipated since James and Bosh signed with Miami   to join fellow All Star Dwyane Wade
Wade returned from a sore knee that kept him out of the   Heat’s previous game and had 18 points as Miami earned their   14th win in 15 games.
Against the reigning two-times champions, the Heat raced   out to a nine-point lead at halftime and built a 21-point   advantage in the fourth.
“We don’t pay much attention to the score but we’re happy   to win the game,” Bosh said. “We made it tough on them. A   (defensive game) is our type of game.”
Los Angeles slogged through the opening quarter where they   managed just 14 points, Bryant and Spain’s Pau Gasol combined   to shoot 0-for-11 from the field.
The Lakers left the court to a shower of jeers from the   home fans. LA were also beaten on Christmas Day last year by   the Cleveland Cavaliers.

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