Miami Heat, Golden State Warriors score, news: Heat fall 97-95 to Warriors despite LeBron James' 31

Yes, Draymond Green.

On a night LeBron James tried to will the Miami Heat to victory, a night when Klay Thompson loaded up on 3-pointers early for the upstart Golden State Warriors, it was a layup by a rookie forward from Michigan State that ultimately made the difference at AmericanAirlines Arena.

Green's basket with nine-tenths of a second to play left the Heat with their second home loss of the season, a 97-95 setback Wednesday night, a game that ended on a missed 19-foot jumper by James at the buzzer.

"It just so happened they made one more play than us," James said after scoring 20 or more for the 25th consecutive regular-season game, extending his franchise record. "It wasn't a step back. We played well."

And hard, so hard that James exited with a bruised right shoulder suffered on a David Lee second-quarter flagrant foul, so hard that teammate Dwyane Wade finished with a sore neck, forced to the locker room late in the second period after running into both Lee and teammate Mario Chalmers on the same possession.

Both said they should be fine for Saturday's home game against the Washington Wizards, the fifth game on this six-game homestand.

As for the Warriors, all they've been feeling lately is elation, having won for the eighth time in their last nine games, as they motor through this Eastern Conference trip.

When it was over, James took time for a midcourt embrace with Green, after spending much of the game trying to get a verbal advantage over the 2012 second-round draft choice.

"He played hard," James said. "It was great competition out there between me and him."

Green was the Warriors' fifth and final option on the decisive play.

The thought that Stephen Curry wouldn't be able to shake free as the first option, limited to four baskets on this night. Thompson was the next choice, followed by Lee or even Jarrett Jack eclipsing his season high of 20 points.

Instead, it was Green who broke free at the rim.

"I saw how they were defending Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson," Warriors coach Mark Jackson said, "and they were concerned coming off screens. And I wanted to make sure we took the last shot.

"I give Jarrett Jack a lot of credit. He nursed it, milked it, and Draymond Green did a good job of flashing and finishing."

Instead of precision, there was confusion for the Heat on the play, with forward Shane Battier holding the primary assignment on Green.

"Typically, there is always weak-side help," Heat guard Ray Allen said.  "They occupied the weak side and nobody saw it.

"Shane made a read, but as a team we didn't make up for that mishap. We just have to have each others' backs down the stretch."

And so, despite 31 points from James, 21 points and 13 rebounds from Heat center Chris Bosh, 27 points from Thompson, and 22 points and 13 rebounds from Lee, it was Green who did in the Heat.

"That's what we set up all along," Jack joked just after the buzzer sounded, having made the game-winning pass to Green.

There wouldn't have been such dramatics if Battier or Allen had moments earlier hit open 3-point attempts, the type of shots the Heat routinely had converted before this semi-skid of three losses in their last five games.

 "We have to learn from the mistakes," said Wade, which for the Heat included 18 turnovers. "It's not good that we lost. It's good that those breakdowns happened early in the season."

 But not necessarily comforting.

"They took control of this game," coach Erik Spoelstra said of the Warriors. "They were playing more consistently with more force, more rhythm."

The Heat did not score in the final 3:18.

"The ball could have moved a little bit better," Spoelstra said. "You have to give them credit for taking us out of things we normally do.

 "The spacing wasn't as good as it can be."

The Warriors, by contrast, played to perfection when needed most, with Green scoring off Jack's assist.

"We broke up probably the first two or three triggers," Spoelstra said, "and their guys kept on running.

"That's some poise."

And that was it.

"And so we move on," Spoelstra said.

Wednesday was Lee's fifth consecutive game of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds, the first time he has done that in his career. Antawn Jamison, in 2001, was the last Warriors player with such a streak.

Neither team led by more than seven points over the first three periods, with the Warriors taking a 77-74 lead into the fourth quarter.

Earlier, it was the Warriors' outside shooting that left them with a 53-52 halftime lead. While the Heat outscored Golden State 34-16 in the paint in the first half, the Warriors were 7 of 15 on 3-pointers over the first two periods, including five in the half from Thompson, who had 21 points at the intermission. The five matched Thompson's previous high for a game. He did not convert one in the second half.

To a degree, the Heat ended the first half in a world of hurt, if only temporarily.

Midway through the second quarter, James landed hard on his right shoulder

on what was ruled a flagrant foul on Lee.

Wade was lost late in the second quarter after consecutive blows to the head on the same play. Wade spent the balance of the half in the locker room, with what was diagnosed as a neck sprain, returning for the start of the second half. He closed with 14 points.

Of his shoulder, James said, "It will be all right. It'll be sore [Thursday] and I'll be ready by Saturday. That is all that matters."

Of his neck, Wade said, "Right now it's fine. Hopefully it doesn't stiffen on me."


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