Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Dwyane Wade tallied 25 points and came up with two big assists down the stretch that helped the Miami Heat outlast the Los Angeles Lakers and record a 100-94 win.
The Heat had a three-point lead cut down to one twice during the game's waning stages, but Wade found Hassan Whiteside for pick-and-roll baskets on both ensuing possessions to help Miami pull out an important victory.
"It's good to see us show some grit in the fourth quarter," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.
Whiteside did his part as well, corralling a career-best 25 rebounds and adding 18 points and four blocks. Goran Dragic also made a big contribution for the Heat, scoring 21 points for a second straight game to go along with six assists.
The Lakers fell for the 13th time in their last 14 road outings despite seven players scoring in double figures. Ed Davis finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds, Wayne Ellington also had 14 points, Jordan Hill posted 13 with 10 boards and Carlos Boozer ended with 13 points.
"We just had a couple defensive lapses ... That's been killing us all season long," Lakers coach Byron Scott said.
Though the stakes were much higher for Miami, battling with several teams for a playoff spot in a tight Eastern Conference while the Lakers play for draft positioning, Los Angeles fought valiantly before ultimately coming up short.
Down by 10 with three minutes to go in the third quarter, the Lakers climbed back to gain an 88-85 edge on Jeremy Lin's jumper midway through the fourth. They were held scoreless for over four minutes after the basket, though, and Miami surged back in front on Wade's successful turnaround and a Dragic 3- pointer with 3:30 left.
The Heat couldn't pull away, however, and Lin fed Hill inside with 1:15 remaining to bring Los Angeles within 93-92. Miami then returned the favor on Wade's connection with Whiteside, and the duo teamed up again after Hill scored on a putback dunk, with Whiteside's bucket giving the Heat a 97-94 advantage with 21.3 seconds to play.
Jordan Clarkson misfired from long distance on the Lakers' next trip down the court, and Whiteside sealed it by making three free throws in the closing seconds.
Miami appeared to be pulling away after putting forth a 13-3 run, capped by a trey from Henry Walker that staked the Heat to a 70-60 lead late in the third quarter. Ryan Kelly and Lin drained triples as Los Angeles countered with an 11-2 push, though, and consecutive baskets from Hill and Davis later on put the Lakers up 84-80 with 7:29 remaining.
The Lakers started the game on a strong note, hitting five of their first seven shot attempts while jumping out to an 11-4 lead. The Heat answered with an 8-0 run, though, and got nine opening-quarter points from Luol Deng and seven rebounds out of Whiteside to own a 28-25 edge after one period.
Miami had a sloppy second quarter, however, committing eight turnovers that Los Angeles converted into 14 points to pull ahead by the break. The Lakers changed momentum via a 13-2 spurt that had them up 42-36 with five minutes remaining in the frame, and Boozer netted six points in the final 2:27 of the half to help send the visitors into the locker room with a 51-46 advantage.
The Lakers were in front by as much as seven early in the third quarter when Wade began to bring Miami back. The veteran guard accounted for six points during a 7-0 surge, which he capped with a turnaround jumper to forge a 55-55 tie.
Whiteside's 25 rebounds were an AmericanAirlines Arena record and the second- highest total in Heat history, trailing Rony Seikaly's 34 boards against Washington on March 3, 1993 ... Miami outrebounded the Lakers by an overall 55-42 margin ... The Lakers lost for the seventh straight time as the visitor in this series, in which the Heat has taken six straight and 10 of the last 11 meetings ... Los Angeles is now an NBA-worst 1-10 in the second game of a back-to-back set this season ... Miami donned its "El Heat" jerseys for the game as part of the NBA's "Noche Latina" night celebrating Hispanic heritage.