Heat 113, 76ers 103

Mi­ami evens up se­ries in first round of play­offs.

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - - FRONT PAGE - By Ira Win­der­man Staff writer

PHILADEL­PHIA — Brett Brown went into the night dis­count­ing the rev­elry from his team’s 23-point rout in Satur­day’s opener of this best-of-seven open­ing-round NBA play­off se­ries.

“I know we’re go­ing to get their very best,” the Philadel­phia 76ers coach said.

He knew what was com­ing from the Mi­ami Heat, if not ex­actly how it would be com­ing.

It came from a re­vival for the aged from Dwyane Wade, lock­down de­fen­sive de­fi­ance from Jus­tise Winslow, re­stored con­fi­dence from Go­ran Dragic and Josh Richard­son.

It came in a 113-103 Heat vic­tory that sends this se­ries to Thurs­day’s Game 2 at Amer­i­canAir­lines Arena tied 1-1.

As Heat coach Erik Spoel­stra said go­ing in, it didn’t mat­ter how the Heat es­caped Philadel­phia with a vic­tory, only that they did. With the script now flipped. “If you can steal a game and then go back home and hold serve,” Brown said go­ing in, “you’ve done what should have been done.”

Wade led the Heat with 28 points, with Dragic scor­ing 20 and Richard­son 14, on a night foul trouble re­moved cen­ter Has­san White­side from the Heat equa­tion.

Ben Sim­mons led the 76ers with 24 points, eight re­bounds and eight as­sists, with Dario Saric scor­ing 23 for Philadel­phia and Marco Be­linelli 16.

The 76ers opened with the smaller lineup that fu­eled their sec­ond-half dom­i­nance in Game 1, with Er­san Ilyasova in for Amir

“If you can steal a game and then go back home ... you’ve done what should have been done.”

Brett Brown, Six­ers coach

who had been start­ing in place of side­lined Joel Em­biid.

With Em­biid miss­ing his 10th con­sec­u­tive game with a frac­tured or­bital bone near his left eye, the 76ers rounded out their start­ing lineup with Saric and Robert Cov­ing­ton along the front line, J.J. Redick and Sim­mons at guard.

The Heat stayed big, with White­side open­ing at cen­ter, flanked by James John­son and Richard­son at for­ward, Go­ran Dragic and Tyler John­son at guard.

The 76ers’ lineup pre­sented in­ter­est­ing cross­matches at the out­set, with White­side open­ing de­fen­sively against Saric, but with White­side de­fended by Ilyasova.

The 76ers, down 16 late in the third pe­riod, cut the Heat’s lead to 93-85 with 8:58 to play on a Saric 3-poin­ter, lead­ing to a Heat time­out, with Saric up to eight points in the pe­riod by then.

And the 76ers kept com­ing, a Sim­mons bas­ket in tran­si­tion draw­ing them within 93-87, with a Saric driv­ing layup later pulling Philadel­phia within 96-92 with 5:47 to go.

Yet no sooner did Richard­son push the Heat to a six-point lead then Sim­mons scored in tran­si­tion to again make it a four­point game,

But a Wade dunk in tran­si­tion pushed the Heat up 100-96, with Wade then as­sist­ing James John­son for a bas­ket that put the Heat up 102-96 and Dragic fol­low­ing up a Heat de­fen­sive stop with a short jumper to give the Heat as 104-96 lead.

A bas­ket by Be­linelli moved the 76ers back within 104-98.

Ul­ti­mately, it left the Heat with the ball up 104-98 with 61 sec­onds to play.

That’s when Wade stepped back with a jumper to put the Heat up 106-98, ef­fec­tively end­ing it.

The Heat pushed to a 16-point lead late in the third pe­riod, be­fore go­ing into the fourth quar­ter up 86-75.

Winslow, White­side, Sim­mons and Ilyasova all had four fouls. The 76ers took the opJohn­son, posite ap­proach to the start of the third quar­ter than they did in Game 1, when they this time opened the sec­ond half with Amir John­son on the court and Ilyasova on the bench.

With Wade scor­ing 15 of his 21 first-half points in the sec­ond quar­ter, the Heat stormed to a 56-42 half­time lead, with Wade con­vert­ing his first seven shots.

The Heat opened the sec­ond pe­riod with a 16-2 run fu­eled by Wade and ag­gres­sive de­fen­sive play from Winslow.

The Heat found them­selves in early foul trouble, with Dragic to the bench with his sec­ond just 4:35 into the game, with White­side fol­low­ing to the bench with his sec­ond foul with 3:45 left in the first quar­ter, fol­lowed shortly by Wayne Elling­ton’s sec­ond foul.

That had the 76ers parad­ing to the foul line and even­tu­ally to a nine-point lead, be­fore the Heat closed within 29-22 at the end of the first quar­ter.

Be­cause of the foul trouble, the Heat went 11 deep in the open­ing pe­riod, with Rod­ney McGruder see­ing early ac­tion.

White­side’s third foul then came 92 feet from the bas­ket, in the back­court, with 6:53 left in the sec­ond pe­riod, forc­ing him back to the bench. His fourth foul then came early in the third quar­ter on an il­le­gal screen.

The 76ers won the opener 130-103 Satur­day, to ex­tend their over­all win­ning streak to 17.

MICHAEL LAUGH­LIN/STAFF PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

Heat guard Tyler John­son gets fouled by Six­ers guard Ben Sim­mons dur­ing the first half of Mon­day night’s game in Philadel­phia.

MICHAEL LAUGH­LIN/STAFF PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

Josh Richard­son passes the ball to an open shooter dur­ing the first half of Mon­day’s first-round game in Philadel­phia. Richard­son fin­ished the game with 14 points.

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