House scores 35 points, Heat beat Raptors 97-79
TORONTO – Eddie House scored a career-high 35 points, Juwan Howard added 18 and the Miami Heat beat the Toronto Raptors 97-79 on Wednesday night in the regular-season finale.
With the Heat assured of the second seed in the East, Miami coach Erik Spoelstra rested LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. The Heat also were without forward Mike Miller, who sat out the second half Sunday against Boston because of a sore left thumb and injured his left ankle Monday night against Atlanta.
Miami will host Philadelphia in its postseason opener Saturday.
House's previous career best was 31, set against Utah on Nov. 18, 2005. He was 7 of 13 from 3-point range.
James Jones scored 12 points and Jamaal Magloire had a season-high 19 rebounds for the Heat, who have won four straight and 15 of 18 heading into the playoffs.
Jerryd Bayless scored 21 points and DeMar DeRozan had 18 for the Raptors, who lost five of their final six games and missed the playoffs for the third consecutive season. James Johnson had 12 points for Toronto.
Ahead by one after three quarters, Miami opened the fourth on a 7-0 run thanks to four free throws from Howard and a corner 3-pointer by House. DeRozan stopped the run with a jumper but Mario Chalmers answered with a jump shot and House made back-to-back 3s, giving the Heat an 85-71 lead with 6:19 left.
For the second straight game, the Raptors had just eight healthy players. Toronto was without Leandro Barbosa (right pinky), Andrea Bargnani (right ankle), Jose Calderon (left hamstring), Reggie Evans (left index finger) Amir Johnson (left ankle) and Sonny Weems (right knee).
House scored 18 points in the first, hitting eight of nine shots, and Miami closed the quarter on a 14-3 run to lead 29-20.
House didn't score in the second, while Bayless had nine as Toronto erased the deficit. Julian Wright's hook shot with 12 seconds left in the half gave the Raptors a 51-50 lead at the intermission.
A 3-pointer by House with 33 seconds left in the third gave Miami a 70-69 lead heading into the final quarter.
NOTES: Magloire's career-high in rebounds in 22, set against Charlotte on Jan. 21, 2006. ... The Heat finished 13 for 26 from beyond the arc. ... Toronto's Barbosa will visit a hand specialist in New York City on Thursday. He missed the final six games of the season. ... DeRozan was the only Toronto player to start in all 82 games. ... Former Blue Jays infielder Roberto Alomar watched from a baseline seat.