James’ jumper lifts Heat over Magic, 101-99
Posted at: 11/23/2013 10:35 PM
By TIM REYNOLDS
(AP) MIAMI - LeBron James’ jumper with 15.1 seconds left put Miami ahead for good, and the Heat rallied from 16 points down in the second half to beat the Orlando Magic 101-99 on Saturday night.
Dwyane Wade scored 27 points in his return to the lineup after missing two games to rest his knees, James added 22 and Chris Bosh had 15 for the Heat, who have won six straight.
Glen Davis, playing for the first time since Jan. 30 because of a broken left foot, scored 20 points for the Magic, who fell to 0-5 on the road. Arron Afflalo and Victor Oladipo had shots in the final 5 seconds, but neither fell and Miami escaped.
Afflalo scored 18, Oladipo added 17 and E’Twaun Moore had all of his 14 points in the first half for Orlando, which let one slip away.
In the first 43 minutes, the Heat led for all of 54 seconds, and were getting blown out for a while.
But Bosh’s jumper with 4:30 remaining put Miami up 89-88, and from there it got frantic to the end. James made a 3-pointer over Davis for another Heat lead with 3:47 left, then took a charge against the burly power forward 19 seconds later, grimacing as he got off the hardwood.
Miami led by four points on a pair of occasions, and the lead was three with just under a minute to play. Afflalo missed a 3-pointer that would have tied it, but Davis got the rebound, went into the lane, drew contact from Bosh and got a shot to fall. The free throw rattled and dropped with 37 seconds left, and the teams were tied at 99-all.
James answered with his jumper over Afflalo. And when time expired, James tossed the basketball to one end, then fired his headband and wristbands into the stands in celebration.
James added nine rebounds and seven assists for the Heat, plus reached double figures for the 508th straight regular-season game, tying Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the fifth-longest streak in NBA history.
The Heat unveiled new red jerseys they’ll wear at home for the next month or so, one of 10 different uniforms the defending champions will wear at various times this season.
Orlando simply had them seeing red in the first half.
The Magic were making everything, shooting 70 percent from the field and 6 for 6 from beyond the arc in the second quarter alone.
Moore had all his points in the second quarter, on 5 for 5 shooting, 4 for 4 from 3-point range _ and that was as many as any two Heat starters had combined in the opening two quarters. When Afflalo got a 3-pointer to rattle off the rim a couple times and finally fall with 7 seconds left in the half, the Magic owned a 55-39 lead to take into the intermission.
The 16-point margin matched the fourth-largest deficit Miami faced at halftime of any game since James, Wade and Bosh became Heat teammates.
By the time Orlando got its first points of the second half, that lead was largely gone.
Miami opened with 10 straight points in the third quarter, with James hitting a pair of 3-pointers and Wade capping it all by going down the middle of the lane for a dunk.
Just like that, 55-39 became 55-49, and the Heat had life.
And even after Orlando pushed the lead back to 11, Miami just kept chipping away.
Wade had another dunk, a trapping Bosh poked the ball away from Nelson at midcourt and drove in for what became a three-point play, and when Norris Cole faked Davis into falling backward and creating more than enough space to make a baseline jumper, the Heat tied it at 66-all.
But Orlando gathered itself, holding the Heat to two field goals over the final 4:08 of the third and taking a 77-71 lead into the final 12 minutes.
NOTES: After playing twice in four days, the teams do not meet again until Miami visits Orlando on Jan. 4. ... James had a stuff-like-only-he-does sequence in the third quarter when he got a deflection and steal, gathered the loose ball, dribbled upcourt and threaded a one-handed crosscourt pass between plenty of Orlando defenders to set Ray Allen up for a 3-pointer.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)