Facebook Twitter

NBA roundup: Heat snap 5-game losing skid

SHARE NBA roundup: Heat snap 5-game losing skid

NBA standings

MIAMI — Less than 2 minutes to go, tie game, Kobe Bryant with the basketball and staring down Dwyane Wade.

Bryant's move was good.

Wade's reaction was better.

And in that moment, Miami's epic run of blown opportunities late in games started coming to an end.

Wade's steal set up LeBron James for the dunk that put Miami ahead to stay with 1:27 left, Chris Bosh scored 24 points in his first outing after saying he wanted more shots, and the Heat beat the Los Angeles Lakers 94-88 on Thursday night to end a five-game losing streak and hand the two-time defending NBA champions their first loss in nine games.

"We had everything riding on this game, really, to be honest with you," Bosh said.

Wade scored eight of his 20 points in the fourth quarter and James finished with 19 points, nine assists and eight rebounds for Miami, which secured a postseason bid with 17 games left — the earliest that's happened in franchise history.

That was an ancillary point: Winning again was all that mattered.

"We didn't want to run away from this," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "We didn't want to hide from any of this. We want to get better. We want to make sure our game is right and ready when it really counts."

MAVERICKS 127, KNICKS 109: At Dallas, the Mavs had lost two of its past three games, with coach Rick Carlisle calling his Mavericks "soft" after they blew a seven-point lead in the final minute in New Orleans the night before. Players responded just like he hoped, scoring a season-best 72 points in the first half on their way to their highest total for a game all season.

NUGGETS 116, SUNS 97: At Phoenix, Nene scored 22 points in 26 minutes and Denver won in Phoenix for the first time in 13 tries. Coach George Karl ended an even longer drought in the desert. The Nuggets coach had not won in Phoenix since Dec. 28, 1997, when he was with the Seattle SuperSonics.