Dwyane Wade scored 14 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter as the host Miami Heat won consecutive games for the first time since January, defeating the Atlanta Hawks 114-113 on Monday night.
Josh Richardson added 19 points, and Justise Winslow added 18 for Miami, which finally beat Atlanta after losing the first three games of this season’s four-game series. Atlanta fell just short of what would have been its first 4-0 sweep of Miami since 1990-91.
Forty-two-year-old Vince Carter led Atlanta with 21 points and made a season-high seven 3-pointers. Carter surpassed Jamal Crawford for sixth place in NBA history in terms of career 3-pointers, ending the night with 2,199. Crawford has 2,195 treys.
Carter also surpassed Reggie Miller (25,279 points) for 20th place in scoring, winding up with 25,292 points.
Meanwhile, Hawks rookie point guard Trae Young — who at 20 years old is less than half Carter’s age — was held to 14 points, including just three in the second half. Young had a three-game spurt last week in which he averaged 40.3 points.
With the win and 19 games left in their regular season, the Heat moved into a virtual tie with the Orlando Magic and Charlotte Hornets for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Miami played its second straight game without 2018 All-Star point guard Goran Dragic (strained left calf).
However, Heat center Hassan Whiteside (left hip) returned after missing three straight games. Whiteside produced four points and seven rebounds off the bench as Miami eased him back into the lineup.
Atlanta was without its leading scorer and rebounder, John Collins, a native Floridian who missed his third straight game due to the flu.
Miami shot 60.9 percent in the first quarter and led for the entire 12 minutes.
By the end of the quarter, Atlanta, which had trailed by eight, cut its deficit to 32-31. The Hawks shot 42.3 percent in the first quarter.
There were four lead changes in the second quarter before the teams settled for a 61-all score at halftime.
Miami shot 61 percent in the first half, compared with 43.1 percent for Atlanta. But the Hawks had a 15-7 edge in points off turnovers and a 10-5 advantage on 3-pointers.
Miami missed all seven of its 3-pointers in the third quarter, but the teams remained tied at 85 heading into the fourth.
From there, it was Wade who did the most damage as Miami held off Atlanta.
—Field Level Media