MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 4: Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards jocks for a position during the game against Rodney McGruder #17 of the Miami Heat on January 4, 2019 at American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida.
Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images

Wizards come up short against Heat, 115-109

The Wizards battled all night in Miami on Friday, but ultimately came up just short against the Heat, 115-109.

Bradley Beal led Washington with 33 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists. His playmaking willed the Wizards late, but the Heat made key plays down the stretch to secure the win. The effort was there on Friday night, but Washington could not get open shots to fall in key situations.

Beal’s 3-pointer with 1:07 left in the game brought the Wizards within one point, but Justise Winslow made a layup with 47.7 seconds left and Jeff Green’s 3-pointer rimmed out on the other end. Bam Adebayo made a free throw to put the Heat up four, and Otto Porter Jr.’s doubly contested 3-pointer did not fall. Miami would escape with the win after Dwyane Wade hit both free throws.

“We could’ve made some more shots,” Beal said postgame. “Definitely down the stretch we missed some easy ones. I think we did enough to win the game. I think effort wise, defensively, rebounding, we did a good job of [limiting their offensive rebounds] as much as possible.”

Trevor Ariza added 21 points and six assists, making 5-of-12 3-pointers. Porter scored 14 points on 7-of-14 shooting in his second game back from a right knee injury. The Wizards only shot 42.9% from the field, but forced 17 Heat turnovers to put themselves in position to win.

Hassan Whiteside starred for the Heat, scoring 21 points and grabbing 18 rebounds in less than 30 minutes of action. His ability to alter and block shots gave the Wizards fits, as Washington only shot 23-of-50 in the paint. Miami, on the other hand, scored 62 points in the paint on 31-of-43 shooting.

“It was definitely one of those games both teams played their butts off,” head coach Scott Brooks said postgame. “Couple of shots in the fourth quarter could have gone our way. It could have been a win for us. Proud of our guys, they fought and battled. That’s how we have played these last four games, we have won two of them. We need to figure out how to win games like this.”

The Wizards are now 4-17 on the road and will face the Oklahoma City Thunder in game two of a three-game road trip. Tip is set for Sunday at 7:00 P.M. on NBC Sports Washington and 1500 AM.

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