EditorsNote: Fixed Adebayo’s rebounds in 4th graf, minor edits
Devonte’ Graham scored 30 points - including five in the final 2:25 — to lead the Charlotte Hornets to a 109-98 win over the host Miami Heat on Wednesday night.
It was a rare home loss for the Heat. Miami has the NBA’s third-best home record at 27-5.
Charlotte improved to 13-21 on the road.
Heat guard Kendrick Nunn — who had been listed as questionable due to an illness — played and scored a team-high 24 points. Miami also got 23 points from Derrick Jones Jr. and 21 points, a game-high 10 assists and seven rebounds from Bam Adebayo.
However, the Heat, after a 40-point first-quarter explosion, scored just 58 in the final three periods.
Graham made 11 of 19 shots from the floor, including 8 of 11 on 3-pointers. He scored all 30 points after the first quarter.
His performance was especially big because he was missing his backcourt partner. Terry Rozier, coming off a career-high 40 points in Charlotte’s 143-138 double-overtime loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Monday, sat out the Miami game due to an illness.
Guard Tyler Herro, Miami’s rookie first-round pick, returned from an ankle injury and scored two points in seven minutes in his first game since Feb. 3.
Heat forward Jae Crowder, who missed one game while in the concussion protocol, returned and scored eight points and grabbed 10 rebounds.
However, Miami was without five-time All-Star Jimmy Butler, who missed his first game since sustaining a toe injury. The Heat are 5-6 without him this season.
Miami, making 14 of its first 15 shots, put together a 21-4 run and finished the first quarter on top 40-22. The Heat shot 84.2 percent from the floor in the quarter, including 8 of 9 on 3-pointers.
Charlotte stormed back, however, with a 20-1 second-quarter run. Miami, after its best-shooting period of the season in the first, missed its first 10 second-quarter shots.
The Hornets took their first lead of the game, 49-47, with 2:46 left in the half on the strength of two straight Graham three-pointers.
Charlotte went into halftime with a stunning 59-51 lead. Charlotte outscored Miami 37-11 in the second quarter and never trailed again. The Hornets stretched their lead to 87-77 after three quarters and cruised from there.
—Field Level Media