Heat again uses some late magic to rally for OT win
LeBron James scores 38, with some key late baskets
The Associated Press
MIAMI — A 13-0 run to start the game, that was too easy for the Miami Heat.
Down by seven with 90 seconds left in regulation, that’s when they started to look comfortable.
And down by three late in overtime, that’s when the Heat finally decided to put things away.
LeBron James scored 38 points, Michael Beasley made two free throws with 9.2 seconds left to put Miami up for good, and the Heat beat the Atlanta Hawks 121-119 in overtime Monday night — topping the Hawks for the ninth consecutive time.
“Obviously, after going through what we experienced last year in The Finals, it’s never over,” James said. “So we just keep fighting until the end, and we were able to force overtime.”
It didn’t have the down-five, 28.2-seconds-left feel that Game 6 against San Antonio had in the title series last June, but there was plenty of drama.
Jeff Teague scored 26 points, Paul Millsap made seven three-pointers on the way to a 25-point night, and Al Horford finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds for Atlanta.
Spurs top Raptors
SAN ANTONIO — Tony Parker had 26 points and eight assists and San Antonio beat Toronto 112-99 in a game between division leaders.
Manu Ginobili had 18 points and Danny Green was 4 for 6 on three-pointers in scoring 14 points for San Antonio (21-7). Kawhi Leonard added 13 points and 10 rebounds.
Kyle Lowry and Terrence Ross, a former Washington Husky, had 23 points each for Toronto (11-15).
• Lance Stephenson scored a career-high 26 points in his hometown of New York, Paul George also had 26, and Indiana posted its third consecutive easy victory, 103-86 over Brooklyn. Stephenson did most of his damage as a scorer, back where he did plenty of it in high school. He became the career scoring leader in New York state, scoring nearly 3,000 points at Abraham Lincoln High School. Nets reserve Jason Terry, out of Seattle’s Franklin High, had 11 points in his first appearance since Nov. 20 after he missed the past 15 games with a bruised left knee.
• Dirk Nowitzki scored 31 points to move past Alex English and into the 13th spot on the NBA’s career scoring list in leading Dallas to a 111-104 victory over host Houston. Houston cut the lead to six after a three-pointer by Aaron Brooks, another former Franklin High star, with about 3½ minutes left, but Nowitzki knocked down consecutive baskets to push the Mavericks lead to 107-97. Dwight Howard had 29 points and 15 rebounds for the Rockets. Jeremy Lin, who has been out since Dec. 13 because of back spasms, scored 20 for Houston.
• David Lee had 28 points and 10 rebounds for his ninth consecutive double-double, leading visiting Golden State past Denver 89-81. Klay Thompson, a former Washington State star, scored eight of his 13 points in the fourth quarter to help Golden State overcome a fourth-quarter deficit for the fourth time this season.
• Carmelo Anthony had 19 points before leaving the game with a sprained left ankle in the third quarter, but the Knicks were able to stave off a fierce charge to preserve a 103-98 road victory over Orlando. “I am walking,” Anthony said after the game. “I think I caught it before it rolled all the way but it rolled pretty bad. So we will evaluate everything (Tuesday).” New York led by as many as 25 points before having its lead cut all the way to a basket in the fourth quarter. Beno Udrih hit six consecutive free throws in the final 26 seconds to help preserve the victory.
• The NBA has fined Clippers forward Matt Barnes $25,000 for failing to leave the court in a timely manner after he was ejected Sunday against Minnesota. Barnes was thrown out after he was whistled for a flagrant 2 foul against Kevin Love.
• After trying to repeatedly heal his surgically repaired left knee by having it drained of fluid, Knicks forward Metta World Peace said he will undergo Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy on Jan. 6.