Thomas scores 25, Celtics get past Heat 112-104

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He had season-highs of 27 points, 17 assists and only one turnover in 38 minutes.

So what can we point to as to why the Celtics are playing better? And the Heat scored 42 points in the third quarter.

That's why Al Horford made it clear from the time he signed with the Boston Celtics that when the time came for their second child to be born, he was going to be there.

Aside from Richardson and his three third-quarter 3-pointers, Miami had no one else to turn to. The defensive-minded shooting guard also made both of his shot attempts from beyond the arc, leading many to believe that he should have taken a couple of more shots during the game.

And Heat center Hassan Whiteside is now added to it with an injury in his left knee. Miami isn't a bad three-point shooting team, as it entered Monday's game ranked 19th in three-point percentage (33.8 percent). That play came less than a minute after the referees docked Smart with a flagrant-1 foul for a hit on Hassan Whiteside.

Miami initially tried to go to Whiteside in the post in order to generate offense. "So I think he's gaining confidence in that ankle and getting back to his old self".

Up next for the Celtics is a date with the Pistons on Thursday, while the Heat visit the Nuggets which kicks off a three-game western conference road trip. "So that's that. Now I can put that behind me and get focused again on [Wednesday] night". "If we do that, we're going to be in position to win every game". After missing two games with a strained left elbow, Dragic returned against the Celtics.

Kyle Lowry stole the show on Tuesday scoring a team-high 24 points and setting a team record by connecting on all six of his three-pointers in the Raptors run away win over the Sixers.

But Dragic's big night didn't leave him feeling satisfied after the loss. The Celtics led by as many at 17 points on various occasions despite playing without Al Horford, who stayed in Boston after the birth of his daughter. "I've already proven in this league that I can score".

"So I know that it meant a lot for me to be there with her, and knowing our schedule ahead and everything". We just need to continue to grow and get better.

"I'm in more of a unique situation because this is our first year here and my wife, we all moved in the middle of the pregnancy", Horford continued.

Smart seemed frustrated after the game, but the irony is that the Heat's Hack-A-Smart strategy was a retaliation of sorts to Smart frustrating them the entire game. He has a consistent role on this Heat team and he's making the most of his opportunity. The injury forced him to miss training camp, the preseason and the first four games of the season. Richardson finished Monday's game with 12 points. One positive note was that the Heat's outside shooting improved considerably during this period, thanks to their 67 percent field-goal shooting. However, the Heat has won three straight against Denver and will certainly be looking to make it four in a row.

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