National Basketball Association News
Bobcats host Shaq-less Heat
Apr 10, 2007, 14:45 GMT
- The Southeast Division-leading Miami Heat close out a home-and-home set with the Charlotte Bobcats this evening in North Carolina.
Miami, which is 2 1/2 games ahead of Washington in the division and fourth in the Eastern Conference standings, got a huge lift on Sunday despite suffering a 111-103 overtime loss to the Bobcats at AmericanAirlines Arena.
Heat All-Star guard Dwyane Wade returned to game action, less than two months after suffering a dislocated left shoulder. He didn't start, but finished with 12 points, shooting just 3-of-9 from the field and 6-of-12 from the charity stripe, while dishing out eight assists.
Alonzo Mourning scored 20 points and Jason Kapono added 19 points for the Heat, who had a three-game winning streak come to an end. Shaquille O'Neal had 15 points and nine rebounds for Miami.
Shaq (personal) is expected to miss tonight's contest. O'Neal will attend his grandfather's funeral in New Jersey. He is averaging 17.2 points and 7.4 rebounds this season.
Charlotte, meanwhile, has won five of its last seven games. In Sunday's overtime win against Miami, Gerald Wallace scored 30 points and Walter Herrmann hit two big threes in the final minute of the extra session to lift the Bobcats.
Raymond Felton had 16 points and Herrmann added 15 for the Bobcats, who have been eliminated from playoff contention. Emeka Okafor and Brevin Knight scored 13 apiece in the winning effort for Charlotte.
The Bobcats are 19-20 at home this season. In injury news for the squad, guard Matt Carroll (back) and forward Adam Morrison (knee) are questionable for tonight's game.
Tuesday's game is the fourth and final meeting between Miami and Charlotte. The Heat are 2-1 so far in the season series and have won seven of eight and nine of the 11 all-time matchups.
Miami has won three straight and four of the five meetings at Charlotte.
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