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Winslow bounces back with 27 as Heat outlast Cavaliers 100-94

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Cleveland made it interesting but Miami did just enough to hold the win.

NBA: Miami Heat at Cleveland Cavaliers Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat took control of what was a tight game against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the third quarter to win 100-94 on Friday night, but not without a late game fright.

Even though they were facing the NBA’s worst team with just nine victories for the season, the Heat once again played down to their opponent and actually were facing a deficit by halftime.

Cleveland used a balance attack in the first half and it wouldn’t be until midway through the third quarter when the Heat went on a 9-0 run to grab the lead but the Cavs would answer back to close within 73-70 with just a few minutes left in the third. Winslow bounced back after a few lackluster game with an impressive first half, particularly with his much improved finishing touch around the rim and displaying sound basketball IQ.

Miami scored 32 points in the third quarter and closed with a 18-5 run, including Winslow erupting for a trio of 3-pointers and 13 points. A corner three from Justise would give the Heat its biggest lead of the night at 78-70 followed by a Josh Richardson steal for a James Johnson lob to Hassan Whiteside and an easy dunk.

Though it didn’t have to take this long to restore order against such a bad team, it looked like it would be smooth sailing ahead by the time the Heat were up 90-72 late in the final quarter. But Cleveland stormed back with a 13-1 run in crunch time to threaten one last time.

Dwyane Wade scored 13 points, including a nice dunk in the fourth quarter for the fans of his former team (*still weird, I know). Hassan Whiteside controlled the paint with 14 points and 13 rebounds, showing some nice hustle and he even made both his free throws!

Miami seeks to return to .500 when they visit the New York Knicks on Sunday.