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Miami Heat beats Oklahoma City Thunder 100-96 to even NBA Finals at one game

OKLAHOMA CITY — LeBron James scored 32, including the clinching free throws with seven seconds left, as the Heat beat the Thunder 100-96 to even the best-of-seven NBA Finals at one game apiece on Thursday night.

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Dwyane Wade added 24 points for Miami, which hosts the next three games. Game 3 is Sunday.

Miami had lost four in a row in the Finals, including the final three games last season against the Mavericks.

It was the first home loss in 10 post­season games this season for the Thunder.

Oklahoma City rallied to win Tuesday's Game 1 after trailing by double digits in the first half.

It rallied Thursday after trailing by 13 in the fourth. And it had a chance to tie on Kevin Durant's 7-footer along the left baseline with 10 seconds left.

But James defended the shot, rebounded the miss, got fouled and made the free throws.

"We've been down. We've withstood rallies. The good thing about it, when they scored, we didn't get our head down. We just got back on offense and started to execute," James said. "It's a great team that we're going against. So we're going to need every effort, every play and it's going to take all the way down to zeroes on that clock to get a win."

Durant had 32 points and three rebounds while Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook had 27 and eight, respectively.

While the Heat was building the early big lead, Thunder coach Scott Brooks was caught on TV telling his players they weren't playing as hard as Miami.

All-Star forward Chris Bosh, back in the starting lineup for Miami, had 16 points and 15 rebounds.

Bosh had started every game he played in during the regular season and playoffs before missing nine games with a strained lower abdominal muscle during the Eastern Conference semifinals and final.

Upon returning, he came off the bench for the first four games. That included Game 1, when he scored 10. After which, coach Erik Spoelstra said the Heat "need more from him offensively."

On Thursday he replaced Udonis Haslem in the lineup. Haslem scored two, and Miami's entire bench scored only eight.

Shane Battier made 6 of 8 shots, including 5 of 7 3-pointers, to score 17 for the Heat.

James Harden scored 21, Oklahoma City's only other player in double figures.

MIAMI (100): James 10-22 12-12 32, Battier 6-8 0-0 17, Bosh 6-13 4-5 16, Chalmers 1-7 0-0 3, Wade 10-20 4-6 24, Haslem 1-2 0-0 2, Jones 1-1 0-0 2, Cole 1-3 0-0 2, Miller 0-0 2-2 2. Totals 36-76 22-25 100.

OKLAHOMA CITY (96): Durant 12-22 4-6 32, Ibaka 2-5 3-4 7, Perkins 1-5 2-2 4, Westbrook 10-26 5-7 27, Sefolosha 1-5 0-0 3, Harden 7-11 5-7 21, Collison 0-0 0-0 0, Fisher 1-5 0-0 2. Totals 34-79 19-26 96.

Miami27282322—100

Oklahoma City15282429—96

3-Point GoalsMiami 6-14 (Battier 5-7, Chalmers 1-3, Bosh 0-1, Cole 0-1, James 0-2), Oklahoma City 9-26 (Durant 4-10, Harden 2-3, Westbrook 2-6, Sefolosha 1-3, Fisher 0-4). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsMiami 49 (Bosh 15), Oklahoma City 46 (Westbrook, Perkins 8). AssistsMiami 13 (James, Wade 5), Oklahoma City 14 (Westbrook 7). Total FoulsMiami 21, Oklahoma City 22. A18,203 (18,203).

Dream Team movie gets huge ratings

OKLAHOMA CITY — Count Dwyane Wade among the biggest audience NBA TV has ever had.

The Heat guard set his alarm to wake up from his nap and watch The Dream Team, the documentary about the 1992 U.S. Olympic men's basketball team that won a gold medal. It was the first U.S. team to include pros.

Featuring previously unseen footage and recent interviews with all 12 players, it debuted Wednesday to an average of 847,000 viewers, becoming the most-watched telecast in the network's 13-year history.

"I wanted to see some of the behind the scenes of those guys together," Wade said.

Wade particularly enjoyed the footage of former Jazz point guard John Stockton walking unrecognized through the streets of Barcelona, Spain, and the relationships and rivalries between certain people. One stood out most to the Chicago native, who was 10 at the time of the Olympics.

"I think the biggest thing that surprised me was probably Michael Jordan and (coach) Chuck Daly," he said. "I knew the rivalry behind Chicago and Detroit. For those guys to go out and golf and have the relationship that they had, I found that very shocking."

Wade played on the past two Olympic teams, including the squad that won gold four years ago in basketball-crazed China. So he appreciated some of what his predecessors lived through.

Heat 100

Thunder 96



NBA Finals

Heat 1, Thunder 1

(All games Ch. 28, 1040-AM)

Game 1: Thunder 105, Heat 94

Thursday: Heat 100, Thunder 96

Sunday: at Miami, 8

Tuesday: at Miami, 9

June 21: at Miami, 9

June 24: at Oklahoma City, 8 *

June 26: at Oklahoma City, 9 *

* If necessary

Miami Heat beats Oklahoma City Thunder 100-96 to even NBA Finals at one game 06/15/12 [Last modified: Friday, June 15, 2012 10:55am]
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