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Heat back at home to face sputtering Bobcats

10:34 AM, Feb 4, 2013   |    comments
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(Sports Network) - The Miami Heat are back in the comforts of home and are scheduled play the next five games at AmericanAirlines Arena, where they will kick off the stand Monday versus the Southeast rival Charlotte Bobcats.

Miami went 2-2 on a recent trip which concluded with Sunday's 100-85 triumph at Toronto. LeBron James, fourth in the NBA with 26.6 ppg, pumped in 30 and also added eight rebounds and seven assists.

Chris Bosh chipped in 28 points and Dwyane Wade had 23 points, five rebounds, five assists and three steals for the defending champions, who bounced back from Friday's 102-89 setback at Indiana.

"Everyone did a good job protecting the rim, protecting the paint," said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra.

The Heat, who have won six of eight games overall, look to extend their home winning streak to four games and own an 18-3 mark as the host. The Rockets, Clippers, Lakers and Trail Blazers will all pay a visit to south Florida in the near future.

Charlotte will resume a five-game road trip (0-3) and dropped a 109-95 decision against Houston Saturday. Kemba Walker scored 24 points and Ramon Sessions added 20 points and six assists for the Bobcats, who have lost three in a row, six of seven and 11 of their last 13 games.

The Bobcats gave up 30-plus points in the first, second and fourth quarters, and fell to 5-17 away from home.

"On the boards it felt like they kind of got to us," Sessions said. "We were going small and trying to get them on the offensive end. We gave ourselves a chance. Teams like Houston, you have to jump on them early. I think we gave them the lead early in the first quarter and never got back to the way we needed it."

It was a scary moment in the fourth quarter when Bobcats forward Michael Kidd- Gilchrist left the game with what was later determined a concussion. He was hit in the head and neck area from behind by the hip of teammate Jeff Taylor on a block attempt, and remained on the ground for several minutes before being removed from the court on a stretcher. The second overall pick of last year's draft was then was taken to a local hospital in an ambulance.

The Bobcats released a statement after the game and said Kidd-Gilchrist was alert and had movement in all extremities. He underwent precautionary X-rays and a CT scan, all of which were negative for head and neck injuries. MKG is out for Monday's game, according to the team's game notes.

Bobcats forward Byron Mullens (sprained left ankle) is a game-time decision.

Charlotte will close out the journey Wednesday at Cleveland. The Bobcats could be in for a long night in Miami and is 29th in defense, allowing 103.04 ppg. Miami is fifth in scoring with 102.3 ppg and won the first matchup with Charlotte, 105-92, on Dec. 26 in Charlotte. The Heat have won nine in a row and are 22-10 in the all-time series.

The Bobcats have lost five straight, eight of nine and 13 of the 16 meetings in Miami. These two division foes will meet again March 24 and April 5.

The Sports Network

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