NBA: Heat stay alive in playoff race
MIAMI, United States – Hassan Whiteside tallied 24 points and 13 rebounds and the Miami Heat kept their postseason hopes alive with a 100-93 victory over the Orlando Magic on Monday.
The Heat would have been eliminated from the playoff race with a loss or a Brooklyn Nets win over the Chicago Bulls. Miami led by as many as 22 points but needed to hold off a late Magic surge to post their second win in eight contests.
The four-time reigning Eastern Conference champions will have to win again in their regular season finale on Wednesday in Philadelphia to have a chance of making the postseason.
“I don’t know what the percentage is now,” said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, “but at least it’s gone up a couple of ticks.”
Dwyane Wade scored 22 points, Luol Deng finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds and Goran Dragic scored 13 with eight assists, for Miami who have not missed the postseason since the 2007-08 season.
Victor Oladipo scored 30 points and Tobias Harris had 26 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Magic, who have dropped three straight contests.
Miami went 3-1 against Orlando this season and has won 12 of the last 13 meetings between the teams.
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