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James leads Heat past Thunder

Heat Sink Thunder In Rematch


OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- LeBron James scored 33 points before leaving in the fourth quarter with a bloody nose and the Miami Heat beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 103-81 on Thursday night.

James went down with 5:50 remaining after he was struck by Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka on a drive to the basket. James finished the dunk, but was bloodied and left the court with a towel over his face.

Dwyane Wade had 24 points and 10 assists and Chris Bosh added 24 points for Miami, which won its fourth straight and avenged an earlier loss to Oklahoma City.

Kevin Durant scored 28 points for Oklahoma City. Russell Westbrook, who had missed the previous 27 games after having a surgery on his right knee, started and scored 16 points.

Oklahoma City lost at home for the first time since Jan. 5.

The Thunder overcame an early 18-point deficit on Jan. 29 to roll past the Heat 112-95 in Miami, and the home fans hoped for a regular-season sweep against the team that beat Oklahoma City in the 2012 NBA Finals.

The crowd erupted as Westbrook was introduced as a starter. His first minute of action was furious and had the crowd on its feet. His first basket was a two-handed, fast-break dunk 37 seconds into the game, and he got a steal 17 seconds later.

The excitement quickly evaporated. James scored 10 points in the first 3:11 on 5-for-5 shooting and Miami made 13 of its first 14 shots to take a 28-13 lead. James scored 16 points to help the Heat lead 34-17 at the end of the first quarter.

The Heat extended their lead to 19 points in the second quarter before the Thunder rallied behind Westbrook. He scored nine points in the final 1:55 of the first half, including a dunk in the closing seconds, to trim Miami's lead to 54-47 at the break.

Miami took control early in the third quarter. James scored six points during a 10-0 run that helped the Heat take a 64-49 lead. The Heat extended their lead to 75-53 on a 3-pointer by James with just over five minutes left in the third quarter.

Durant scored seven points in the final 2:46 of the quarter to trim Miami's edge to 76-65 heading into the fourth quarter.

Miami reasserted itself in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter. Bosh hit a 3-pointer to bump the Heat's lead back up to 19 with just under 10 minutes to go.

NOTES: Thunder G Reggie Jackson, who started while Westbrook was out, entered the game in the first quarter as a reserve. ... Durant scored just two points on 1-for-5 shooting in the first quarter. ... Miami shot 76 percent in the first quarter but made just 7 of 17 shots in the second and was outscored 30-20. ... Perkins left the game in the third quarter with a left groin strain and did not return.


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PlotkinUSA February 21 2014 at 12:46 PM

... Once upon a time, I rooted for the New York Baseball Giants and Football Giants and the Rangers and the Mets!! (Yes ... though I was born in the Bronx & lived there until the summer of the 6th grade ... when we moved to Lynbrook on non-NYC Long Island ... I accepted the Yankees ... but always loved the Mets!)

... then ... from the day I moved to Miami , in 1970, I became ... and ... still am ... a Dolphins fan!! And when the Heat and then the Marlins became a reality, I'm proud to say I switched my allegiance to them ... and ...yup(!) ... I am still proud to root for all of them!!!!

(Was a season ticket holder for the Phins and the Heat until I moved to Charlotte County on the Florida Gulf Coast in 1998 ... Still am and always will be a fan of those Flordia teams!!!)

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pete February 21 2014 at 2:48 PM

Kevin is not a natural leader. He is a leader by virtue of his talents; which by the way, extend far beyond hoops. On the other hand, James is a natural at leading and consensus building. Put all the MVPs, scoring titles, etc., aside. These men have superlative talents & skills to succeed & achieve in any area of life they would've embarked upon. Basketball is only a game, but life is the ultimate arena one must compete & survive in. And only the true winners will survive. And they that know their God will be strong & do exploits. Even the youth will faint & be weary; and the young men will ultimately fail. But they who wait on the Lord will renew their strength. They will mount up with wings like Eagles. They will run, and not get weary. They will walk, and not faint!

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1 reply
spikecogan pete February 21 2014 at 3:37 PM

pete....get......help......soon......

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cindythomas1960 February 21 2014 at 3:30 PM

Marred? lol A grown man got a bloody nose! Who writes this CRAP? lol

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LinkDeVille February 21 2014 at 11:55 AM

Had that injury not occurred, I believe LBJ would have rocked 'em for a minimum of 40 pts. He stepped up to show the world who the real MVP is. Not to take any credit from the beast that is KD, but it's obvious the media outlets are convinced of something LBJ is not willing to accept...KD is a better baller than LaBron. I like KD but let's keep it a buck folks. With Kobe injured, LaBron is the "King" of the game. That's right he still has a ways to go before he can surpass the accomplishments of the Mamba. Either way, he's coming... BTW why is the no report of his ridiculously accusations of flopping? No one can say that was the case last night. He was absolutely killing the Thunder and still...LaBron gets no respect... Wake up and recognize game!

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1 reply
pizzageogh LinkDeVille February 21 2014 at 12:24 PM

If you want us to respect the man, you might want to at least spell his name correctly! It's LeBron not, LaBron!

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1 reply
rahclassick pizzageogh February 21 2014 at 1:43 PM

Can you please explain to me someone spelling Lebron James name incorrectly means I can't respect him ? / In your words > If you want us to respect the man, you might want to at least spell his name correctly! It's LeBron not, LaBron! / So

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bransa24 February 21 2014 at 12:53 PM

Lebron is the best player in the NBA right now and showed his sense of humor by posting himself as Bane James mask and all. One thing this hit has done is to make him more determined to win another championship. What Ibaka did was to light the fuel. Go Heat!!!

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evnsaffl February 21 2014 at 11:16 AM

Looked like more than just an accidental slap -- more like a chop.

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usafgolfrvs February 21 2014 at 9:44 AM

the thunder hs a very good team even when westbrook goes crazy on the court, but when the heat are hitting on all parts they are the best of the two. ibaka should get a fine for the flagret foul he de did on james. thunder has a missing part to a good team. westbrook needs mental help.

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wmb000 February 21 2014 at 10:10 AM

Did the official see the travel on the same play.?

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dandyjoe2727 February 21 2014 at 9:04 AM

ew but cool because i lovvve basketball

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gjdn February 21 2014 at 6:49 AM

This guy seems like what the young people should look up to. Although it seems the media sometime searches for negative thing to say about him he is an example to all that no matter where you come from you can succeed and it doesn’t have to be as an athlete.

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