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Dragic helps Heat cruise to 97-79 win vs Bucks, win streak now at 7

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Miami keeps climbing up the standings after a quality win versus the visiting Bucks.

NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Miami Heat Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat held the Milwaukee Bucks to 36 second half points en route to a 97-79 win at the AmericanAirlines Arena on Sunday, extending their win streak to seven games and sole possession of first place in the Southeast Division.

Dragic led the Heat with 11 fourth quarter points as part of a 25-point effort, including 4-6 from long range. Justise Winslow returned after missing 14 games and totaled three points, four rebounds and four assists in 13 minutes.

Josh Richardson added 16 points and six rebounds while Hassan Whiteside had another strong game with 15 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks. James Johnson was the only starter not to reach double-figures in points with four points, but added eight assists, four rebounds, two blocks and two assists in 25 foul-plagued minutes.

Milwaukee shot a season-low 32 percent from the field (including 14.3% for 3-pointers) and were outscored 30-16 in the pivotal third quarter. Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 22 points and six rebounds but couldn’t counter Dragic and the Heat down the stretch. The game was tight through the first half, in which a last-second shot by Dragic left the Heat down by two points at halftime, and up to the midpoint of the third quarter, when Miami scored 14 consecutive points, their first meaningful run of the game.

The victory places Miami just one game behind the Cleveland Cavaliers for the third seed in the Eastern Conference. The Heat visit the Chicago Bulls tomorrow for another early game at 3:30pm.