The Houston Rockets All-Star had to shoulder a heavier load than usual as Dwight Howard served a one-game suspension, and he answered by putting his fingerprints all over the 115-102 victory, effectively ending his team's three-game slide.
His 26 points (10-of-19 from the field), four rebounds, two steals, and one block were punctuated by 14 dimes, which ties his career high.
Also picking up the slack in Howard's absence was recently re-acquired forward Josh Smith, who started the contest at the center position. He finished with 19 points - his best scoring output since returning to Houston - four boards, two steals, and a block.
Despite seven different Miami players scoring in double figures - the injury-plagued Amar'e Stoudemire shone with 14 points and 10 boards - they couldn't prevent the determination of Harden and company.
The Rockets' record improves to 26-25 as they prepare to face the Phoenix Suns next in hopes of protecting their weak grip on the 7th seed in the Western Conference.