MIAMI — Center Chris Bosh scored 19 points as the Miami Heat defeated the Atlanta Hawks 104-88 on Tuesday night.
The Heat (8-3) broke the game open with a 20-4 surge that stretched from midway through the second quarter and into the third period.
Guard Mario Chalmers finished with 14 points and scored nine unanswered points midway through the third quarter as Miami increased a 3-point halftime for its first double-digit advantage.
Chalmers’ second straight 3-pointer with 5:06 remaining in the period increased the Heat’s lead to 68-54. Chalmers started his spurt on a 3-point-play with 5:45 left.
The Hawks got no closer than 80-71 after forward Cartier Martin’s 3-pointer 1:59 into the fourth quarter.
Reserve forward Mike Scott scored 15 points and center Pedro Antic scored 12 points to lead the Hawks (6-4). Forward Al Horford also finished with 12 points but was held scoreless in the second half for Atlanta, which had won four of its previous five games.
Reserve guard Ray Allen, returning from a three-game absence, scored 17 points and shot 3-of-5 from behind the arc.
Bosh’s corner 3-pointer with 3:01 remaining in the second quarter capped a 13-2 run and gave the Heat a 43-38 lead. Bosh shot 8-of-9 from the field.
The Heat played without guard Dwyane Wade, who sat out because of sore knees. Seldom-used reserve James Jones started in place of Wade.
Forward LeBron James was limited to 13 points for his lowest total of the season but increased his consecutive double-figure scoring streak to 506. James sat out the fourth quarter after the Heat built their double digit lead.
Held scoreless in the first quarter, James scored 10 points in the second period. James’ layup with 16 seconds remaining in the quarter gave Miami a 48-45 lead at halftime.
The Hawks had three separate six-point leads in the second quarter, the last on DeMarre Carroll’s layup with 5:56 remaining for a 36-30 advantage.
NOTES: The Heat continue to limit G Dwyane Wade’s games to rest his sore knees. Coach Erik Spoelstra said Wade will travel with the team for the second game of a back-to-back set Wednesday at Orlando. … G Ray Allen, F Udonis Haslem and G Mario Chalmers returned to action against the Hawks. Haslem missed the past four games because of back spasms, while an illness sidelined Allen for three games. Chalmers served a one-game suspension for his flagrant foul on Dallas F Dirk Nowitzki in Miami’s 110-104 win against the Mavericks on Nov. 15. … On Tuesday, the Hawks began a stretch of four-games over the next five nights. Although early in the season, coach Mike Budenholzer said the Hawks will have plenty of opportunities to find themselves during the busy period. … C Gustavo Ayon started his third consecutive game over F Paul Millsap, who was inactive against Miami.