Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
The Heat struggled through three quarters, but made up for it in the fourth with stifling defense as the Hawks had no answers late.
Even though LeBron James led the Miami Heat in scoring with 24 points, his teammates did much of the heavy lifting late as they prevailed over the Atlanta Hawks, 103-90, on Wednesday night at Philips Arena.
Miami (37-14) outscored the Hawks, 40-17, in the fourth quarter and got a balanced effort across the board throughout the game as five Heat players scored in double figures. Dwyane Wade added 20 points on 8-of-18 shooting.
Atlanta (29-23) obviously read the scouting report on the Heat, because they took full advantage of their deficiencies inside. They outscored them, 44-38, in the paint and outrebounded them handily, 42-33. Turnovers, 19 of them to be exact, cost the Hawks dearly as they couldn't put Miami away late.
Al Horford led the way for Atlanta and totaled 27 points and nine rebounds. Josh Smith shook off the effects of being involved in constant trade rumors and had a solid effort with 10 points, nine rebounds and nine assists. The Hawks shot just 26.9 percent from the three-point line.