MIAMI (AP) -- Lamar Odom thinks he could have played better
Saturday. After all, he did miss five free throws.
The Miami Heat, however, were thrilled with his performance: 30
points, 19 rebounds and 11 assists to help beat the Sacramento
It was the Heat's first triple-double in nine years, the fourth
in franchise history and the eighth for Odom. He achieved a season
high in points and a career high in rebounds, and he matched his
career high in assists.
"That's my favorite part of basketball -- getting triple-doubles
and filling it up a little bit," Odom said. "If there's one stat
I could have, that would be it, whether it's 10-10-10 or big ones
like this. I'll remember this game for a long time."
Working mostly against Chris Webber, who returned this week from
knee surgery, Odom went 11-for-18 from the field and 7-for-12 from
the line. He also had two steals and a block in 45 minutes and was
at his best down the stretch.
"It wasn't a complete game," Odom said. "Bad night from the
free throw line."
Teammate Eddie Jones went just 1-for-8 from the field but made
three free throws in the final 23 seconds and played smothering
defense against Peja Stojakovic. Sacramento's top offensive threat
went 4-for-13 and scored 14 points.
Mike Bibby had 24 points and Webber 22 for the Kings, who fell
behind by 13 points in the second quarter.
"We didn't do a thing in the first half," coach Rick Adelman
said. "We were in another place. I don't know what was going on."
The Kings, who shot 39 percent, came into the game with the
NBA's best record but fell to 20-3 against the Eastern Conference.
The other losses were at Boston and at New York in early November.
"It seems we beat the best teams, then lose to the
lower-caliber teams," Webber said. "We have to remember that now
we're not under the radar anymore. And whether they make the
playoffs or not, a win over us can make their season."
Miami used only seven players to beat the Kings. Rafer Alston
had 20 points, seven assists and just two turnovers in 46 minutes.
Reserves Rasual Butler and Udonis Haslem added 17 points apiece.
And then there was Odom. The 6-foot-10 forward was all over the
floor, often running the offense from the point.
"That was a phenomenal performance," coach Stan Van Gundy
said. "There haven't been many better than that in the NBA this
year. He had a very favorable matchup, and he made great plays."
Webber declined to blame his knee as a hindrance in trying to
"He had a great game," Webber said. "They used him like a
point forward -- put the ball in his hands and let him do what he
does. He's so versatile in a lot of different situations."
The Heat hung onto a small lead as Odom made several key plays
late. First he grabbed a rebound and threw a long pass to Butler,
who drove the rest of the way for a layup and an 88-84 lead.
Odom then achieved the triple-double when he earned his 10th
assist with 2:46 left. He stumbled to the floor on a drive, and two
Kings were battling him for the ball when it rolled to Haslem, who
sank a layup for 90-86 lead.
Another assist by Odom set up Alston's 3-pointer that made it
94-88. Odom said he was unaware of the triple-double until the game
"The most important thing is that we won," he said. "If you
have a game like that losing, no one cares. No one remembers it."<
^Notes:@ The Heat's stretch of 739 games without a triple-double
was the longest in the NBA. Utah now has the longest at 390. ...
The last Heat player to record a triple-double was Billy Owens on
Jan. 5, 1995. ... The Kings fell to 3-13 in Miami. They last won in
Miami on Dec. 9, 2001. ... Webber is averaging 24 points and nine
rebounds in three games since returning from knee surgery and a