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Matthews lifts Trail Blazers to shock win

Last-quarter turnaround leaves Heat to suffer

Gulf News

New York: Guard Wesley Matthews buried successive three-pointers to cap a stunning late rally as the Portland Trail Blazers stunned NBA champions Miami Heat with a tense 92-90 win on Thursday.

Trailing 80-68 with just over eight minutes left, Portland finished with a rousing 24-10 run to record their fourth straight win and their ninth in a row at home, improving to 20-15 for the season.

Matthews’ heroics put Portland ahead 91-90 and a LaMarcus Aldridge free throw then made it 92-90 with 10.4 seconds remaining.

Guard Mario Chalmers missed a late three-point attempt as the Heat slipped to their fifth defeat in their last eight games for an overall record of 23-11.

Nicolas Batum led the way for the Trail Blazers with 28 points, forward LaMarcus Aldridge contributed 20 points and 15 rebounds while Matthews finished with 18 points on seven-of-18 shooting.

“We got a lot of confidence and we are playing great at home right now,” Williams said after his step-back three-pointer with 26.9 seconds left put Portland a point in front.

“We are playing very well overall. We played against a great team ... and we knew they would make their run. We just got to stop the bleeding and we were able to do that.”

Though Chris Bosh scored a game-high 29 points for Miami and Dwyane Wade weighed in with 18, the visitors paid the price after being outscored 29-22 in the final quarter.

LeBron James was restricted to 15 points on six-of-16 shooting, ending a run of 54 games including the play-offs with at least 20 points dating back to last season.