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James leads second half surge as Heat spurn Knicks
New York, NY (Sports Network) - LeBron James netted 29 points to go along with 11 rebounds and seven assists as the Miami Heat matched a franchise record with their 14th straight victory by edging the New York Knicks, 99-93, in a battle between two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference.
Dwyane Wade scored 20 points with eight boards and eight assists and Chris Bosh scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half for the Heat, who defeated the Knicks for the first time in three tries this season.
"It was huge, it was our next game, it was our next challenge," James said. "We had a few this week, we had Memphis come in our building, a very good team, one of the best teams in this league. Then today, New York, one of the best teams in our league as well. To come here, against a team that's very good at home, to get a win under the circumstances is great."
The Heat trailed by 14 points at the break, but outscored the Knicks 54-34 in the second half.
Carmelo Anthony scored a game-high 32 points for the Knicks, who had a three- game winning streak snapped. Jason Kidd had 14 points on 4-of-5 shooting from behind the arc and J.R. Smith added 13 points and 12 rebounds in defeat.
Smith's trey with 6:20 remaining put the Knicks ahead 87-85, but the Heat clamped down defensively to close out the contest.
After Bosh tied the game and Wade put his team up two with less than five minutes remaining, James grabbed all the momentum. He gave the visitors a 91-87 lead after blocking Tyson Chandler's layup attempt, then tipping in a missed shot on the other end of the floor, all but taking the wind out of New York's sails.
As the contest winded down, Bosh's long-range jumper capped off a 12-4 spurt which gave Miami a 97-91 edge with 1:06 to play.
The Knicks got the ball back down four with less than 30 seconds left, however, James stole an errant Smith pass for an easy slam to secure the impressive victory.
"I thought that third quarter and especially in the fourth when it was crunch time we turned it over and didn't get shots," New York coach Mike Woodson said. "They're a great team and you got to do everything right to beat that team."
After a sluggish first half which saw the Heat enter halftime down 59-45, Miami opened up the third quarter on a 14-4 run to get within 63-59.
As the period came to a close, Amar'e Stoudemire had consecutive dunks before making 1-of-2 from the free throw line to keep the margin at 10 points, but Miami closed the stanza with six straight to quickly get back within four at 77-73.
Anthony's driving lay-in to start the fourth gave New York some life, but it couldn't hold off James, who tied the contest at 79-79 after hitting back-to- back 3-pointers. Shane Battier then followed with one of his own to put Miami back in front and it would stay in control much of the final 8 1/2 minutes.
Ray Allen's triple at the 8:17 mark of the second quarter made it 30-29 in favor of Miami, but the Knicks took advantage of some hot shooting by Kidd -- who nailed a trio of threes -- during a surge which made it 42-37 with just under five minutes left in the first half.
Chandler's alley-oop slam with 1:45 left increased the home team's lead to 10 and Iman Shumpert made one free throw to cap off an impressive 17-5 flurry which made it 59-43 with 36 seconds left, but James closed the half with a monster dunk to keep the Heat within 14 points going into the break.
Anthony had 24 points on 6-of-8 shooting -- and made 11-of-12 from the charity stripe -- by halftime ... Anthony also had 17 of New York's 22 first quarter points ... The Knicks turned the ball over 18 times resulting in 20 Miami points ... Miami has won six straight road contests ... The Heat last won 14 straight from Dec. 26, 2004 to Jan. 1, 2005.
03/03 17:18:34 ET
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