Udonis Haslem scores 24 as Heat celebrate farewell game

MIAMI -- Miami Heat veteran Udonis Haslem made the most of the last regular-season game of his 20-year career, scoring 24 points in 25 minutes in a 123-110 win over the Orlando Magic on Sunday.

It's the most points Haslem, who is retiring after the season, has scored since 2009.

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra reiterated before Sunday's game just how much he is going to miss having the 42-year-old in the locker room next season.

"I'm going to miss his spirit," Spoelstra said. "I'm going to miss his voice. I'm going to miss his intentions. He has incredible, pure, team intentions. Every single day. He doesn't have a bad day. He may express himself with anger other times at his teammates or even with me, but his intentions are pure.

"He doesn't have bad days, there's not a moodiness, he doesn't come in with any kind of baggage. It's pure. It's always about winning. How can he help somebody else? How can he help the team? How can he help mentor? That's what keeps his mind going constantly."

The Heat showed a tribute video for Haslem before Sunday's game that included messages from Spoelstra and Heat President Pat Riley.

Haslem stood at center court with his family as his wife, Faith, gave him a heartfelt message. Haslem also gave a brief speech to the crowd, thanking Heat fans for all their support through the years.

"Whether I was starting, whether I was the first guy off the bench or whether I didn't play at all, you guys always had my back and showed love," Haslem said. "For me, that's priceless. That's beautiful. And that's why it made it all so easy, just to sacrifice everything."

Bam Adebayo presented Haslem with a personalized rocking chair as his teammates enjoyed the moment in front of them.

Haslem got another warm ovation from the crowd after checking into Sunday's game with 9:05 left in the first quarter.

Spoelstra acknowledged before the game that he has started to think about what it will be like not to have Haslem around the group as much next year.

"Unfortunately, I have started to think about it the last couple weeks," said Spoelstra, who wore a T-shirt honoring Haslem during his pregame news conference. "And I haven't wanted to and I'm usually disciplined and focused on the task at hand, but of course you're going to feel a certain way about it, and have different emotions about it. It's somebody that I care so deeply about, as a competitor, but even more as a person. And our relationship has really just grown in so many different ways over the years."

Haslem was originally signed as an undrafted free agent from the University of Florida in 2003 and was a key member of Miami's rotation during all three of the franchise's championships. While he has rarely played in recent years, he is respected up and down the organization for his leadership style.

"I think the average person would be shocked how much he's thinking about other people in the locker room or the coaching staff," Spoelstra said. "It's a beautiful trait to have as a human being. And that's why he's going to be celebrated and have a big-time salute for an amazing career. And a guy who's touched so many people and inspired so many of us in this organization and in this ZIP code to make things better."

While Jimmy Butler was out Sunday to rest in advance of Tuesday's play-in game against the Atlanta Hawks, Adebayo, Tyler Herro and the rest of the Heat rotation players played Sunday to keep their rhythm and to get a few more minutes with Haslem on the floor.

"Short answer is I'm going to miss him," Spoelstra said. "But he's not going anywhere, it's just going to be a different role. And I think he'll find a way to make this role even more impactful than what he's done now. He's already done that five or six times over the course of his career, it will be a reinvention and he'll find a way to move the needle."

The Associated Press contributed to this story.