Dwyane Wade sparked a third-quarter run and the Heat scored 10 straight in the fourth quarter to pull away for a 126-110 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday in Miami.
With the win, the Heat remained in eighth place in the Eastern Conference, just ahead of Orlando and Charlotte, both winners on Friday night. The victory also was the Heat’s 16th straight against the Cavaliers at AmericanAirlines Arena.
Rodney McGruder scored 11 points in the fourth and 13 overall as Wade added six more in the final quarter as Miami opened up a 19-point lead with just over four minutes remaining.
Eight Heat players scored in double figures. Josh Richardson led the way with 20 points. Justise Winslow finished with 16 points, nine rebounds and nine assists. Hassan Whiteside scored 11 points and grabbed 11 rebounds.
Wade finished with 12 points and five assists.
Collin Sexton led Cleveland with 27 points and Jordan Clarkson added 21. The Cavaliers, beset by injuries throughout the season, lost Larry Nance Jr. after he took a shot to the chest early in the third period.
The Cavaliers stayed closed thanks to their 3-point shooting, connecting on 19 of 43 attempts. But the Heat used a 37-point third quarter and wore down the Cavaliers on the boards to break open a close game.
The Heat outrebounded the Cavaliers 45-28.
Kelly Olynyk’s twisting reverse layup and free throw gave the Heat a 78-73 midway through the third period. Olynyk then blocked David Nwaba’s layup attempt on the other end and Winslow made one of two free throws to put Miami up by six.
Wade’s floater put the Heat up 81-73. Goran Dragic’s up-and-under layup and Wade’s fast-break bucket gave Miami a double-digit lead for the first time as the Heat took a 94-83 lead heading into the fourth.
The Cavaliers were ahead 29-28 after the first period, which saw 15 lead changes.
The second quarter was much of the same with the Heat outscoring Cleveland 29-28 as the teams were tied at 57-all at intermission.
In all, there were 22 lead changes and 13 ties in the first half. Miami shot 57.9 percent while the Cavaliers connected on 55.6 percent of their field-goal attempts.
—Field Level Media