Heat rally past Knicks, win 14th straight
NEW YORK (AP) — LeBron James stretched his arm above the rim, soaring high on a shaky knee and turning his steal into a finishing dunk as Carmelo Anthony hung his head near midcourt.
The Heat took the Knicks' best shot, but it wasn't good enough to beat the defending champs.
Nothing is right now.
James had 29 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists, and Miami tied a franchise record with its 14th straight victory, rallying for a 99-93 victory at New York on Sunday.
"We feel like this is one of our better wins of the season, even under the circumstances that we went through tonight, a little adversity being down double digits," James said.
Dwyane Wade added 20 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for the Heat, who had to overcome a 16-point deficit to beat the Knicks for the first time in three tries this season. Chris Bosh bounced back from a dismal first half to finish with 16 points and Shane Battier hit all four 3-point attempts to score 12.
The Heat won their sixth straight on the road by controlling the final minutes against a team that had a pair of 20-point victories over them this season and looked ready to run them out of the building again.
But James shook off a third-quarter leg injury and was back in top form by the finish, putting it away by coming up with a steal and throwing down a dunk with 23 seconds left.
"Obviously, it's great to win games, period. But when you're on a win streak, you've got to find many different ways to win ballgames and we've had comebacks in the last seconds, we've had double-overtime games, but this was probably the most thrilling one," Wade said. "It was the most challenging. For a team who beat us twice, they handled us twice and they were up 16 in the first half, for us to have the resilience to come back, find a way fight out this win, it was great."
Carmelo Anthony scored 32 points for the Knicks, who had won three in a row. Jason Kidd emerged from a lengthy slump to finish with 14 points, eight rebounds and six assists. J.R. Smith had 13 points and 12 rebounds, but shot 5 of 18 from the field.
"I think we are disappointed because we had an opportunity to win a ballgame here at home against the champs," Kidd said. "So it's something we can look at and get better at with those mistakes, especially later in the game."
The Heat matched their 14 straight wins during the 2004-05 season and finally beat one of their closest pursuers in the Eastern Conference after dropping their first four against the Knicks and Indiana Pacers.
James landed awkwardly when he was fouled trying to catch a lob pass in the third quarter and was trying afterward to loosen his left knee or leg. He looked fine in the closing minutes, making key plays on both ends of the floor.
"His motor is limitless. I don't want to take that for granted. I don't just want to assume that he can play 40-plus minutes, but he had to do it on both ends," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "Couldn't get him out in the fourth quarter and if I would have tried, he probably would have strangled me.
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