NBA: Miami Heat scorch Warriors as winning streak ends

 24 Jan 2017 - 22:19

AFP

Miami: The Miami Heat withstood a ferocious fourth quarter rally to upset the Golden State Warriors with a 105-102 victory on Monday.
Dion Waiters led the way with 33 points as Miami notched their fourth consecutive win on the way to ending the Warriors' seven-game unbeaten run.
The Heat were made to sweat for the victory, and came within a whisker of surrendering the initiative after the Warriors put together a 12-3 scoring run to go within one point with just over 21 seconds left.
Goran Dragic scored a free throw to put Miami two points ahead, but the Warriors tied it up at 102-102 with seconds remaining.
With overtime looking a certainty, Waiters took his time and drained a superb three-pointer to secure a dramatic victory.
"These are the moments you want to live for, especially against a great team like that," Waiters said.
"I'm in a zone right now," added Waiters, who scored a career-high 33 points for a second straight game.
Waiters said he knew his game-winner was destined for the basket as soon as he released.
"I'm not afraid of those types of moments. This feels good," he said.
The Heat improved to 15-30 with the win while the Warriors fell to 38-7. Kevin Durant led the scoring for Golden State with 27 points while Klay Thompson finished with 22 and Stephen Curry 21.
But the Warriors paid the price for Thompson and Curry's failure to convert more three-pointers, with the two making just six out of a combined 17 attempts.
Dragic finished with 19 points for Miami while Hassan Whiteside posted a double-double, chipping in 10 points and 15 rebounds.
The Warriors, who had looked sluggish in victory over Orlando on Sunday, again struggled to find their best form early on, edging into a modest 48-46 lead at halftime after making just 45.8 percent of their shots in the first 24 minutes.
The Heat also produced a disciplined defensive display, giving up only three free throws and seven fastbreak points.
"We did not lose this game in the last three or four minutes -- we were soft tonight," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.
"We did not execute defensively...they were the smarter and tougher team tonight," he said.
Miami forged into the lead with a 12-2 run in the third that put them ahead 77-73 at the start of the fourth.
The Warriors fought back however and looked to have forced overtime with Durant's late dunk from the baseline.
But Waiters saved his best for last, coolly sinking his three-pointer to secure a thrilling victory.