Late Heat Rally Falls Short Against Wolves
Minnesota 100, Miami 96
MINNEAPOLIS, March 21 (Ticker) -- All-Star Dwyane Wade couldn't get one of his easier shots to go when he needed it most.
Wade scored 35 points but failed to convert a potential tying layup as the Miami Heat's late charge fell short in a 100-96 setback to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Known for hitting seemingly impossible shots and clutch baskets, Wade missed in the closing seconds, which handed the Heat their sixth straight loss in the Target Center and ended their five-game winning streak.
"It was the easiest shot I had all night," Wade said. "I attacked the basket, but it wasn't meant to be, because I don't miss that shot too often."
"Dwyane has made so many shots for us down the stretch to put us in a position to win a game," said Miami forward Udonis Haslem, who had 11 points and six rebounds. "Sometimes you have to miss some."
Trailing, 82-70, to begin the final period, the Heat put together an 11-4 surge to pull within 95-90 with 2:55 to go. Wade, who entered the contest shooting just 15 percent from beyond the arc, drained back-to-back 3-pointers to cap the run.
Davis made a 3-pointer, but Alonzo Mourning - who had 21 points and 12 rebounds in place of the injured Shaquille O'Neal - converted a three-point play and Wade added three free throws to cut the deficit to 98-96 with 34 ticks remaining.
Minnesota's Mark Blount missed a jumper and Gary Payton gathered the rebound, giving the Heat a chance to tie or take the lead. Wade easily drove into the lane but missed a reverse layup over Blount with just three seconds left.
"I think Dwyane was surprised that he got all the way to the rim when he probably didn't think he would get far," Miami coach Pat Riley said. "The Timberwolves didn't come off anybody, they stayed home on everybody."
Garnett sank two foul shots with nine-tenths of a second left to end Miami's six-game road winning streak.
"I am trying to get the ball and be aggressive in the fourth quarter, said Garnett, who made 9-of-10 free throws. "It is important for me to find ways to get to the line and I can do that by being aggressive."
Blount, Marcus Banks and Marko Jaric scored 12 points apiece for Minnesota, which outscored Miami, 32-13, in the third period.
"(In the) third quarter they hit their first six or seven shots," Riley said. "From there, you could see their confidence rose."
Wade, who hurt his wrist late in the first quarter, appeared to show no signs of discomfort as he collected 22 points in the opening half. He added eight assists.
"He was having a great game and it was a pretty ugly foul," Riley said. "I think he is OK."
O'Neal missed the contest due to a right thumb injury suffered in Sunday's win at New York. After experiencing pain prior to the game, he had an X-ray, which was negative.