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Late basket lifts Heat over Magic

The Miami Heat's attempt to win Friday night's exhibition worked so well that Orlando tried it. But Orlando's attempt didn't work any Magic. Jeff Turner's lob pass for Otis Smith was tipped away with one second remaining and the Magic lost 123-121.

The Heat broke a 121-121 tie just one second earlier when Kevin Edwards lobbed a pass to Sherman Douglas, who lost his man on a backdoor-cut.

Orlando lost its second exhibition game in seven tries despite a 31-point effort by forward Jerry Reynolds. The Heat (1-5) won for the first time on the strength of Glen Rice's 24 points and a trapping Miami defense.

The Magic will attempt to avenge the loss to its rival Miami tonight at the Orlando Arena. Orlando won an earlier meeting between the two teams last week in Charlotte.

However, the high level of intensity on Friday night had less to do with the budding rivalry between the two recent expansion teams than the battle for roster spots.

Miami played without center Rony Seikaly, who sat out the game with an ankle sprain. The Magic left top pick Dennis Scott and Sam Vincent behind in Orlando with minor injuries.

The Magic left its best play behind in the first quarter. Orlando wasted a 16-point first quarter lead and was forced to rally late in the fourth quarter.

Miami built a 10-point lead midway through the final period, but the Heat went cold on offense. The Magic went on an 11-4 run to cut Miami's lead to three when Jerry Reynolds hit Michael Ansley with a pass for a backdoor layup with 4:51 left.

The Magic tied the game at 121-121 with 20 seconds left when Smith scored following a pass from Reynolds.

Miami drained the clock until two seconds remained before Edwards hit Douglas for the game-winner.

Skiles looked played like a man competing with Sam Vincent for a starting spot than a someone fighting for a roster spot. In Vincent's absence, Skiles hit all his first quarter shots, two field goals and three free throws. He also added two assists and three steals. Skiles is still competing with Morlon Wiley for a roster spot behind Vincent, but he put distance between himself and Wiley in the first half. Wiley did little during his eight minutes.

After the Magic built a 34-18 lead with 3:39 left in the first quarter, Miami charged back. The Heat began applying more pressure on defense and the Magic struggled to maintain its rhythm on offense. Wiley was running Orlando's offense during Miami's rally. Heat rookie Bimbo Coles made a layup that cut the Magic lead to 37-29 with 28 seconds left in the first quarter.

Around the league

Nets: The New Jersey Nets are planning to hold a news conference Sunday to officially announce the signing of their top draft choice, Derrick Coleman, to a five-year, $15-million contract, the New York Times reported.

Bullets: Forward John Williams has accused Washington general manager John Nash of trying to make an example of him and said he is prepared to sit out the season unless the Bullets rescind Williams' fines of more than $270,000 or decide to trade him.


Times wires services contributed to this report.