MIAMI – With 17 games to play in 31 days and two brutal road trips awaiting, the Miami Heat know January will be far from easy.
At least it’s off to a flying start.
Hassan Whiteside had 25 points and 19 rebounds, Gerald Green added 19 points off the bench and the Heat rolled past the Dallas Mavericks 106-82 on Friday night to snap a two-game slide.
“You want to be tested,” Miami coach Erik Spoelstra said. “You want to be measured in this league. You want to be pushed to adversity. . . . But I don’t want these guys thinking about 16 more games right now.”
For the Heat, Chris Bosh scored 16 points and Goran Dragic had 15 points and seven assists.
Miami adjusted its starting lineup shortly before tip-off when Dwyane Wade was stricken by flu-like symptoms. Wade got some intravenous fluids and checked in early in the second quarter, just his 10th time playing off the bench in his 13-year career. He finished with 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting.
Whiteside made 12 of 16 shots, and the Heat enjoyed their biggest victory margin of the season.
“I’m just trying to get my All-Star ratings up,” Whiteside said.
Dallas had just 10 points in the first quarter — its low for any period this season — and shot just 36 percent for the game, compared to 56 percent for Miami. The Heat have just four home games left in January, two of those in the next five days, and have separate five- and six-game trips this month.
“The bottom line with this tonight is they played an angrier game,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. “The combination of that, and our shot-making was just not there all night, we just lost a little bit of our edge.”
Zaza Pachulia led Dallas with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Wesley Matthews made four 3-pointers for his 12 points, and Dirk Nowitzki added 11 points for Dallas — which was playing for the first time since topping Golden State on Wednesday.
The Mavs’ four-game winning streak was snapped.
“Just not a good night overall, on both ends of the floor,” Nowitzki said. “But we kept fighting. Every time we got a little momentum, we either made a big mistake on the other end or they made a big shot.”
Bulls 108, Knicks 81
In Chicago, Jimmy Butler scored 23 points, and Nikola Mirotic had 17 points and seven assists to help the Bulls beat New York.
Pau Gasol added 17 points and eight rebounds as Chicago triumphed for the fourth time in five games while avenging a blowout loss at New York on Dec. 19.
Wizards 103, Magic 91
In Washington, John Wall scored 24 points with 13 assists, Otto Porter had 20 points and 11 boards, and the Wizards extended their dominance of Orlando, beating the Magic for the 11th consecutive time.
Raptors 104, Hornets 94
In Toronto, DeMar DeRozan had 23 points and Kyle Lowry added 18 points and 11 assists as the Raptors rallied to beat Charlotte.
Lakers 93, 76ers 84
In Los Angeles, Lou Williams scored 12 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter against his former team and Jordan Clarkson added 19.