Heat top Knicks, cling to postseason berth

Dion Waiters had a season-high 28 points and added six assists as the Miami Heat defeated the host New York Knicks 100-92 on Saturday night.

The Heat (38-38), who have a tenuous hold on the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, won their second straight game and reached .500 for the first time since Jan. 27.

Miami got double-doubles from Goran Dragic (10 points, 10 assists), Kelly Olynyk (12 points, 11 rebounds) and Hassan Whiteside (17 points, 13 rebounds). Dragic had his second career triple-double in his previous game with 23 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists.

Heat guard Dwyane Wade, who is retiring after this season, scored 16 points in his final game at Madison Square Garden.

The Knicks (14-62), who are coached by ex-Heat assistant David Fizdale and have the worst record in the NBA, have lost 14 of their past 15 games, including six straight. The Knicks are 0-5 with one game left on their current homestand.

New York’s leading scorers on Saturday were Emmanuel Mudiay (24 points), Luke Kornet (17) and Kevin Knox (16).

A bright spot for the Knicks was rookie center Mitchell Robinson, a second-round pick, who had nine points, a game-high 14 rebounds and a game-high four blocks. In his previous game, he had 19 points, 21 rebounds and two blocks.

Miami played without three key injured players: Josh Richardson (left heel), Justise Winslow (right thigh) and Rodney McGruder (left knee).

The Knicks took advantage early, shooting 60 percent from the floor, including 3-of-7 on 3-pointers, to take a 33-29 first-quarter lead.

New York stretched its lead to 61-55 at halftime, and the big difference in the first 24 minutes came at the foul line, where the Knicks made 16-of-18. Miami went to the line just seven times, making six.

The high scorers at halftime were Mudiay (18 points) and Kornet (14) for the Knicks and Waiters (16) for Miami. Kornet and Waiters each made four 3-pointers.

Miami made its move in the third quarter, tying the score at 79-79. Waiters led Miami’s surge with nine points in that third quarter, and the Heat cruised in the fourth.

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