- Dick’s Sporting Goods lays off 478 PGA golf pros
- Senators: Cease-fire must allow Israel to defend against rockets, tunnels
- Sierra Leone doctor fighting Ebola catches disease
- Iraq welcomes Russian fighter jets, helicopter gunships into ISIL fight
- John McCain laments: Obama’s ‘self-pity … is really kind of sad’
- GOP offer to fix VA gives $10 billion in emergency funds
- Paul Ryan offers to repair U.S. economic safety net with a single grant stream
- Kim Jong-un builds bond with Putin: $250M Russia-backed addition to key port opens
- Pope Francis meets Meriam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman sentenced to death
- Detroit porch shooting trial: Suspect says he didn’t know gun was loaded
At 16 wins, Heat still are unimpressed
Question of the Day
MIAMI (AP) - LeBron James drove to the rim and scored on Miami’s final play, winning a game in memorable fashion and preserving the Heat’s winning streak that has lasted for five weeks.
Still, the Heat are not impressed by, well, themselves these days.
For Miami, 16 playoff wins are the goal _ not a 16-game winning streak during the regular season. To the Heat, the regular season is an 82-game tuneup for the challenges that await in April, May and they hope, June _ when they’ll try to win the 16 postseason games needed to successfully defend their NBA championship. And that’s why even buzzer-beating wins aren’t sending the Heat locker room into a celebratory frenzy right now.
“We’re enjoying it,” Heat forward Shane Battier said, “but we have bigger goals.”
James scored with 3.2 seconds left on Wednesday night, lifting Miami to a 97-96 win over the Orlando Magic. Miami’s 16th straight victory gave the Heat a 7 1/2-game lead over the New York Knicks in the Eastern Conference standings, an 11 1/2-game cushion over the Atlanta Hawks in the Southeast Division and put the reigning champions in line to clinch their playoff spot on Friday _ in just the 60th game of the season.
Miami plays at home against Philadelphia on Friday, and a win would match the 12th-longest winning streak in NBA history.
No, the Heat don’t care much about that, either.
“It really doesn’t affect us,” Heat guard Dwyane Wade said. “In a sense, we want to win, and we want to win every game we play. The day it comes where our streak gets broken we move on to the next game. Obviously, it is great, when you look back at it one day and say `Oh, we won that many games in a row.’ But right now, we are just playing.”
Not just playing _ playing better than any team in Heat history, at least statistically.
The previous franchise record for a winning streak was 14 games. During this 16-game run, there have been blowouts, double-overtime thrillers and now buzzer-beating victories. Miami has outscored opponents by an average of 11.5 points per game during the streak, and James and Wade have been nothing short of brilliant throughout the run.
By the numbers, since Feb. 3:
_ James is averaging 28.2 points, 7.7 rebounds and 7.6 assists on 61 percent shooting.
“I haven’t brought it up,” said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, when asked about the streak. “What we’re trying to do is get better.”
If someone knows that long winning streaks during the season mean little when the stakes are highest, it’s Battier. At Duke, he was on a team that won 32 straight games in one season, and with the Houston Rockets he was part of an epic 22-game winning streak in 2008.
The subsidies are a hit with patients who don't exist
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Algerian plane diverted due to storms, second aircraft: 116 missing
- Obama's empty tough-talk: Gun prosecutions plummet on his watch
- House panel OKs resolution to sue president for Obamacare delays
- Conservative groups decry Democrats' 'war on women' tactic
- Obama says public not familiar enough with issues
- Evidence shows Russia firing artillery into Ukraine: Pentagon
- Astronaut shares 'saddest photo' from space: Bombs bursting over Israel, Gaza
- Doctor, 2 others shot at Pennsylvania hospital: reports
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq