Dwyane Wade scored 28 points off the bench in just 26 minutes and the Miami Heat held off a late run to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers 113-103 Monday night in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference first-round series at the Wells Fargo Center.
Goran Dragic added 20 points and James Johnson had 18 as the Heat evened the best-of-seven playoff series. Game 2 will be Thursday in Miami. Josh Richardson contributed 14 points and Wayne Ellington and Kelly Olynyk each had 11.
Ben Simmons led the Sixers with 24 points, eight rebounds and eight assists while Dario Saric added 23 points and nine rebounds. Marco Belinelli scored 16 points while Ersan Ilyasova scored 14 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. JJ Redick had 11 points on just 4-for-13 shooting.
The Sixers won their final 16 regular-season games and the first game of the series and hadn't suffered a loss since March 13.
Philadelphia was 7 of 35 from 3-point territory and shot just 42.1 percent overall in playing their second straight playoff game without injured center Joel Embiid.
The Heat scored five quick points to open the fourth, going back up 91-75 just 56 seconds in.
A 10-2 surge by the Sixers capped with a 3-pointer by Saric got the Sixers within 93-85 with 8:58 remaining. On their next possession, Simmons finished a fast break with a dunk and the Heat lead was sliced to 93-87.
Johnson responded by hitting a huge 3-pointer to put the Heat up 96-87.
When Saric later drove to the basket and scored, the Sixers trailed only 96-92 with 5:47 left.
After re-entering the game, Wade's steal and dunk with 4:04 left gave the Heat a 100-96 lead. Wade then found Johnson for a dunk and a six-point advantage, 102-96. Dragic eventually capped a 6-0 run with a baseline jumper for a 104-96 advantage with 2:25 left and the 76ers never challenged again.
The Sixers had surged to a 29-22 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Then the Heat turned into a completely different team with a dominating second quarter, a 34-13 outburst which turned a seven-point deficit into a 56-42 advantage at halftime.
Wade was scintillating off the Miami bench with 21 points on 8-of-9 shooting. After scoring his 17th point, Wade moved past Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird for sole possession of 10th place on the NBA's all-time playoff scoring list with 3,899 points. Wade actually outscored the Sixers 15-13 in the second, with the 13 points scored the fewest for the 76ers in a quarter this season.
Dragic also shot 5 of 6 for 11 points in the first half.
No Sixer reached double figures in scoring as Simmons and Belinelli had nine points each in the first two quarters. Philadelphia was 16 of 48 and just 2 of 18 from beyond the 3-point arc. The 16 missed treys are its most in any playoff half in franchise history.
The Heat also held a 29-23 edge in rebounding in the first half.
After the Sixers closed within nine early in the third quarter, the Heat quickly moved out to a 14-point lead again when Dragic knocked down a jumper to go ahead 79-65 with 3:23 left in the period. Less than a minute later, Wade hit a difficult jumper with Robert Covington draped all over him for an 81-65 advantage.
The Heat led 86-75 at the end of the third.
--Field Level Media