The Miami Heat opened their playoff schedule with an easy 123-91 win over the Charlotte Hornets on Sunday.
Miami would set two records with its 49 field goals made and 123 points, which both set new playoff highs for the franchise. Dorell Wright sank two late three-pointers to push Miami over the points record.
Miami scored 41 points in the first quarter and never looked back as it coasted to the opening game victory. Miami and Charlotte finished the regular season with identical records, but looked vastly different in this one. The Heat did an admirable job of defending their home court and maintaining their advantage.
The Heat took a 17-point lead into the locker room at the half, and a 23-point lead into the final quarter. The game was never in question and the lead only extended further in the fourth quarter. With about four minutes to go in the game, Miami took a 31-point lead before both teams emptied the benches.
Luol Deng had a massive night with 31 points and seven rebounds in 33 minutes. Deng added an assist and a steal as well in one of his finest games as a Miami player. The Heat were +26 with the veteran on the court.
Hassan Whiteside had a big game as well with a double-double. The center posted 21 points, 11 rebounds, two steals and three blocks.
In his 153rd career playoff start, Dwyane Wade showed his experience. The veteran had 16 points, seven assists, and four rebounds in 26 minutes. The large lead allowed Miami to give its star a little extra rest ahead of the remainder of the series.
The Heat will try to take a 2-0 series lead when they host the Hornets again on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m.