Alonzo Mourning and the Miami Heat took their time getting warmed up against the Washington Wizards.
Mourning scored 22 of his 32 points in the second half as Miami overcame a 17-point third-period deficit to beat Washington 99-92 on Friday night.
"We were like Jekyll and Hyde out there," said Mourning, who also had seven blocks and seven rebounds. "We were two different ball clubs."
Mourning has scored at least 20 points in a franchise-record 12 straight games, the NBA's longest active streak and one game shy of Mourning's career best.
Jamal Mashburn scored 17 of his 22 points in the first half for the Heat, who limited the Wizards to 35 second-half points. Miami's Tim Hardaway added 17.
"Our guys adjusted well in the second half and we simply attacked," said Miami coach Pat Riley, whose team has beaten Washington six straight times.
It was the fifth time this season that the Heat have come back from a double-digit deficit to win.
In his second game back after missing seven with fractured right ribs, Mitch Richmond led the Wizards with 21 points. Rod Strickland contributed 20 and Juwan Howard 16.
"Miami stepped it up a little defensively in the second half," Washington coach Darrell Walker said. "I'm still pleased with the effort."
The game was tied at 90 when Mourning hit two free throws at the 2:51 mark.
After Clarence Weatherspoon connected on one of tw from the line, Voshon Lenard hit a 3-pointer to give Miami a 96-90 advantage with 1:01 to play.
The teams then exchanged baskets and Lenard added a free throw for the final margin.
The Heat hit their first 25 free throws, and finished 30-of-35.
Howard made a basket 46 seconds into the third quarter to give the Wizards their biggest lead, 59-42.
Mourning had eight points as Miami used a 17-6 run to cut the gap to 65-59 with 6:28 to go in the third period.
A pair of 3-pointers by Hardaway and Richmond's basket gave the Heat an 85-84 lead with 7:55 left in the game.
Notes Before the game, the 500th of his career, Mourning met with Steven Walker, a 14-year old from Boynton Beach, Fla., who has leukemia and needs a bone marrow transplant. It is hoped that publicity from the meeting will result in potential marrow donors contacting the National Marrow Donor Program at 1-800-MARROW2 or www.marrow.org. Earlier in the day, Mourning introduced his new breakfast cereal, "Zo's O's." Mourning's proceeds from the cereal will go to charity. Despite speculation arising from his withdrawal from this weekend's Pebble Beach Pro-Am, Washington's new part owner and president of basketball operations, Michael Jordan, did not accompany the team to Miami. The Heat extended to 470 their NBA record for games with at least one 3-point basket. With 21 points, Richmond increased his career total to 19,016 and moved past Reggie Theus into 32nd place on the NBA's career scoring list.
©2000 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed