Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 4)

Series starts 11/20

Game 1: Sunday, November 20th
Game 2: Monday, February 27th
Game 3: Wednesday, March 29th
Game 4: Tuesday, April 11th

Heat 98

(48-23, 20-16 away)

Raptors 94

(26-45, 14-21 home)

    7:00 PM ET, March 29, 2006

    Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON

    1 2 3 4 T
    MIA 19 22 24 3398
    TOR 31 26 17 2094

    Top Performers

    Mia: D. Wade 37 Pts, 3 Reb, 3 Ast, 2 Stl, 2 Blk

    Tor: M. Peterson 28 Pts, 3 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl

    Wade rallies Heat from 16 down to beat Raptors

    TORONTO (AP) -- Dwyane Wade played so well that he earned a kiss from Pat Riley.

    Wade scored 16 of his 37 points in the fourth quarter, and the Miami Heat overcame the absence of injured Shaquille O'Neal to beat the Toronto Raptors 98-94 on Wednesday night.

    O'Neal missed the game because of a hyperextended left knee, but Wade rallied Miami from a 16-point deficit.

    As his All-Star guard walked to the dressing room afterward, Riley kissed him on the back of the neck.

    "He's incredible," Riley said. "He has no fear at the end and he simply wants to be put in that position. He was a way of making plays, he's just incredible."

    A humble Wade laughed about the kiss.

    "I put an OK day in, especially in the second half. That's just coach Riley being the emotional guy that he is," Wade said.

    Miami trailed by as many as 13 in the final period, but Wade scored 10 straight points as Miami went on a 16-4 run to take its first lead since early in the first.

    Wade crossed over Mike James, put the ball behind his back and made a layup and drew the foul before converting the free throw to give Miami a one-point lead with 3:28 left.

    Toronto coach Sam Mitchell couldn't believe Wade was allowed to take over.

    "I think some of our guys need to understand who Dwyane Wade is and what he can do," Mitchell said. "I got cable. Even before I got to the NBA, I knew what Magic Johnson could do. I watched TV. Even if you got three channels, they're on TV."

    Wade sealed the victory with six free throws in the final minute.

    His two free throws made it 92-89 lead with a minute left, but Eric Williams tied it with three free throws after being fouled on a 3-point attempt.

    Wade made two more with 30 seconds left and Williams -- who barely plays -- missed an off-balance layup, costing Toronto a chance to tie.

    After Toronto failed to foul Gary Payton, Udonis Haslem dunked to give Miami a 96-92 lead with 11 seconds left.

    Wade made two more free throws with 4.8 seconds remaining to seal it.

    "First half, any time Dwyane Wade got the ball, we had bodies on him, we took away his penetration, we took some charges," Mitchell said. "In the second half, for whatever reason, we just gave him the lane and stopped doing what we were supposed to do."

    The Raptors seemed to lose momentum when they inserted 5-foot-11 guard Andre Barrett into the game in the fourth. Payton kept posting him up and Miami began its run.

    James went 3-for-10 from the field in the fourth quarter for Toronto. He also allowed Antoine Walker to make a key 3-pointer as he celebrated his own 3-pointer with some trash talk.

    "We came down and hit baskets and we were celebrating," Morris Peterson said. "They came down and hit 3-pointers while we were not getting back on defense."

    James also complained about players celebrating.

    Walker started at center for Miami and had 18 points and 10 rebounds, while Haslem had 15 points and 13 rebounds.

    The Heat were also missing backup center Alonzo Mourning, who has a torn right calf.

    Peterson had 28 points for the Raptors, who were missing All-Star forward Chris Bosh -- who is expected to miss at least a week with a sprained left thumb.

    Peterson had 13 points as Toronto outscored Miami 19-11 in the first 6 minutes of the first quarter. Toronto finished the period up 12 points.

    The Raptors led 57-41 at halftime.

    Game notes

    O'Neal thought he hurt the knee when he was kicked in Miami's win over Indiana on Monday night. He was seen limping at Wednesday's shootaround. "He has a little irritation on his knee. I don't think it is anything more than that," Riley said. It was the first game both Mourning and O'Neal missed. ... Maligned Toronto center Rafael Araujo played some of the most productive minutes of his career in the second quarter -- scoring five points, blocking a shot, taking a charge and recording an assist. He's usually booed, but he received a smattering of applause after being replaced.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 98 94
    FGM-FGA 34-81 (.420) 37-83 (.446)
    3PM-3PA 4-17 (.235) 6-21 (.286)
    FTM-FTA 26-32 (.813) 14-17 (.824)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 15-51 8-39
    Assists 13 21
    Turnovers 16 10
    Steals 4 8
    Blocks 2 5
    Fast Break Points 8 14
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 15 (0/0) 25 (2/0)
    Largest Lead 4 16

    Top Performers

    Dwyane Wade Wade
    Points: 37
    Reb: 3
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 2
    Morris Peterson Peterson
    Points: 28
    Reb: 3
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0