NBA Game Summary - Miami at Charlotte
(Friday, April 3rd)
Final Score: Miami 97, Charlotte 92
Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) - Dwyane Wade led all scorers with 27 points and added 10 assists, as the Miami Heat clinched a playoff spot after edging the Charlotte Bobcats, 97-92, at Time Warner Cable Arena.
Daequan Cook chipped in with 16 points and seven rebounds off the bench for Miami, which recovered after dropping a 98-96 decision to Dallas on Wednesday. The Heat have split their last eight games overall.
Michael Beasley went for 14 points in a reserve role, while Jermaine O'Neal had 13 points to go along with six boards in the win.
Miami is now in a virtual tie with Philadelphia for fifth place in the Eastern Conference.
Gerald Wallace scored 21 points and had eight boards to pace the Bobcats, who were coming off a 111-109 double-overtime loss at Boston on Wednesday. Charlotte has dropped two in a row after winning its previous three games and fell to two games behind idle Chicago for the eighth and final playoff spot in the East.
"We got to regroup now, guys got to step up and we have to finish the season up strong," said Wallace. "We still have an opportunity."
Raymond Felton had a solid game with 16 points and 10 assists and Boris Diaw and Emeka Okafor each scored 13 points for the Bobcats. Okafor also had a game-high 13 rebounds. Raja Bell donated 11 points before leaving early in the third quarter with a right calf strain. He did not return.
With Charlotte holding a 71-67 edge after three quarters, the hosts maintained a slim advantage in the early stages of the fourth. However, a Cook trey near the midpoint of the period put the Heat ahead 80-79.
After a brief lead change, Wade's make put Miami back up by two near the five- minute mark. He then got a layup to go and made 1-of-2 from the line to give his squad an 88-83 lead with 3:05 to play.
Diaw's three-pointer got the Bobcats to within 94-92 with 16 seconds remaining, but after Wade made only 1-of-2 from the line for a three-point edge, Felton missed a potential game-tying three-pointer with five seconds left. Wallace was called for a foul on the rebound attempt, and Cook made a pair of free throws to seal the victory.
"It was very rewarding, especially in this building which we haven't been that successful in," said Wade. "We had a lot of people contribute to this victory and that's what is rewarding about it. Everyone did their job tonight."
Charlotte jumped out to a 28-16 lead after one quarter and held an 11-point advantage nearly four minutes into the second.
However, Miami closed the quarter on a 17-6 run, with Mario Chalmers connecting from three-point range in the closing seconds to tie things at 45-45 heading into the break.
The game went back-and-forth for much of the third quarter, and Wade's jumper with 3:20 remaining tied it at 60-60.
Wallace hit a pair of free throws and a three-pointer to put the Bobcats in front by a 71-67 margin after three.
Miami will conclude its three-game road trip at Washington on Saturday, while the Bobcats visit Detroit on Sunday...The Heat improved to 14-24 on the road this season...Charlotte fell to 22-18 as the host...Miami's Udonis Haslem (hand) left the contest late in the third quarter and did not return...The Heat won three of four meetings with the Bobcats this season...The Heat are only the second team in NBA history to make the playoffs after finishing the previous season with a 15-67 record. The 1968-69 San Diego Rockets were the other team.
04/04 02:39:25 ET