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Curry carries Warriors to win over Heat

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MIAMI — Perhaps the Miami Heat should not have let Stephen Curry into their arena on Monday.

One day later, Curry made them pay.

Curry scored a season-high 40 points Tuesday night to lead the Golden State Warriors to a 114-97 victory over Miami at AmericanAirlines Arena.

“I got some nice shots in here yesterday filming a commercial for our Christmas game,” said Curry, the Warriors’ star point guard. “I shot about 100 3s for the camera. That might have helped.”

It was Curry’s fourth 30-plus-point game this season. His eight 3-pointers — out of 11 attempted — represented a season high. He also had a game-high seven assists and three steals.

Then again, Curry made eight three-pointers at AmericanAirlines Arena last season as well, scoring 36 points in a 123-114 Warriors win.

“There are certain arenas where you see the rim better,” Curry said. “This arena has a nice feel to it, and the weather is nice so that might inspire some good play.”

The Heat was inspired early, putting up its highest scoring quarter of the season in the first, leading 36-30. Miami point guard Mario Chalmers had 13 points, which was his best quarter of the season.

But Chalmers scored only one more point for the rest of the game, and the Heat, which led by as many as 16 points in the second quarter, crumbled late.

Golden State, which also got 24 points from shooting guard Klay Thompson, rallied to trail by just one point at halftime.

Miami led 95-93 with 7:25 left in the game, but that’s when the Warriors went on a 14-0 run to end the Heat’s chances.

Thompson had six points and Curry five during that 14-0 run.

“We were in a position to work the last five or six minutes of the game, grind it and have a chance to win in the end,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “But we just couldn’t sustain it.

“They played their best basketball in the fourth quarter, and we got caught in some tough possessions.”

The Warriors’ starting backcourt of Curry and Thompson combined for 64 points on 22 of 38 shooting, including 11 of 18 on 3-pointers.

Miami’s starting backcourt of Chalmers and Norris Cole combined for 18 points on 5 of 25 shooting, including 2 of 10 on 3-pointers.

There were some extenuating circumstances to the comparison 00 Heat starting shooting guard Dwyane Wade is out due to an injured hamstring, and Cole played his first game since dislocating his left middle finger last week.

Spoelstra said Cole’s finger was not a factor, and Chalmers, Spoelstra and just about everybody else credited Curry for his outstanding performance.

“Curry’s an excellent shooter,” Chalmers said. “We didn’t keep a body on him enough. We started off doing a pretty good job, but he got free in the second half.”

By quarters, Curry was pretty consistent, scoring eight, 10, 12 and 10 points, respectively.

“There’s probably only two or three guys who can shoot those kind of 3s off the dribble,” Spoelstra said. “That’s the fastest release I’ve ever seen.”

The Warriors won their sixth consecutive game and are 11-2 overall — just a half-game behind the Toronto Raptors and Memphis Grizzlies for the best record in the NBA.

At 6-1, the Warriors tied the Houston Rockets for the best road record in the league.

The Heat (8-7) continued their struggles at home, where they are just 4-5 (44.4 winning percentage). They were 32-9 at home last season (78 percent).

Miami, which got 26 points and nine rebounds from forward Chris Bosh, is also 2-3 against the Western Conference, losing to the Warriors, Rockets and Los Angeles Clippers — all at home.

As a team, Golden State shot 57.3 percent from the floor and 46.4 percent on 3-pointers (13 of 28).

“That’s winning pretty,” said Warriors coach Steve Kerr, whose team also won the rebound battle 45-40. “It was a terrific effort by all our guys.

“As a broadcaster, (Curry) is fun to watch. As a coach, it’s ‘Yes! He’s on our team!’ I wouldn’t trade him for any point guard in the league.”

NOTES: Miami waived SG Shannon Brown, who had started the previous two Heat games, both victories. In his place, Miami signed 7-foot, 260-pound C Hassan Whiteside, who averaged 22 points, 16 rebounds and five blocks in his past three games in the D League. Whiteside, 25, was the Sacramento Kings’ second-round pick in 2010. … Miami is still without C Chris “Birdman” Andersen (ankle). … Warriors starting F David Lee (hamstring injury) has played just seven minutes this season. … Warriors C Andrew Bogut (right orbital contusion) returned to the starting lineup after playing just eight minutes on Sunday. … Warriors G Leandro Barbosa (sprained knee) played four minutes off the bench after getting hurt on Sunday. … The Warriors’ five-game road trip continues Wednesday at the Orlando Magic. … Miami gets a bit of a Thanksgiving break and won’t play again until Sunday at the New York Knicks.