(Reuters) – Miami’s reserves starred in a critical late-game stretch to hand the Heat their seventh consecutive victory with a 120-108 home win over the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday.
Following three tight quarters, the red-hot Heat rode their reserves during a 13-2 run early in the fourth that gave them a 106-92 advantage and a clear path to their latest triumph.
The team’s bench scored all but two points during the game-breaking stretch, and finished with 32 for the game, to aid a game-high 30 points and 10 assists from Dwyane Wade.
Wade had the crowd on their feet in the second quarter after a spectacular play that saw LeBron James block a shot then lob a near full-court pass to the guard, who caught it in midair and finished it.
“We did some nice things in spurts and stretches,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra told reporters. “You do have to give the Kings credit, they played very well. They pushed us there until the very end.”
Chris Bosh added 20 and 10 rebounds and James chipped in 18 points to fuel NBA-leading Miami (26-7), who have won their last seven games by at least 12 points.
The struggling Kings (10-22), who were without the injured John Salmons (hip), have now lost six straight.
Isaiah Thomas put up a team-high 24 points and Marcus Thornton finished with 23 for Sacramento who took a six-point lead after the first quarter but fell behind late in the second and had to play catch up the rest of the way.
“We had to play a perfect game to win this against this team and we were pretty close to a perfect game,” said Sacramento coach Keith Smart.
“We had moments but when you give up 25 points off turnovers, you are not going to beat many teams.”