Miami Heat win away at Toronto Raptors for first game of series
The Raptors lose the first game of the series at home despite a buzzer-beating Lowry three-pointer to force overtime. Another lesson given by Dwyane Wade.
In Toronto, Miami regrouped superbly after Kyle Lowry's game-tying buzzer-beater saw the Raptors force overtime at 90-90.
Lowry's remarkable 39-feet leveler with the final play appeared to signal a momentum shift in Toronto's favor.
However, Miami regained their composure and roared back with eight unanswered points to lead 98-90 and eventually win 102-96.
The win gives Miami a 1-0 lead in the series with game two coming on Thursday.
Miami coach Erik Spoelstra hailed his team's mental strength after they closed out the win in overtime, bouncing back from Lowry's spectacular three-pointer.
'Kyle Lowry's three, as soon as it left his hands, I think everyone in the building kind of had an idea that would go,' Spoelstra said. 'From that point on, I was extremely proud of the group.
'To get knocked down on the canvas like that, the air punctured out of your body, to show the mental resolve to come back and take control of overtime -- that's great mental toughness that I think we showed from there.'
Goran Dragic had a game-high 26 points for Miami.
Dwyane Wade finished with 24 points, six rebounds and four assists while Joe Johnson added 16 points and seven rebounds.
For Toronto Jonas Valanciunas scored a team-high 24 points and 14 rebounds while DeMar DeRozan added 22 points, six rebounds and four assists. Terrence Ross scored 19 points off the bench.
Lowry's three-pointer was a rare moment of class amid a disappointing display which saw him finish with only seven points.
Raptors coach Dwane Casey is adamant the Toronto talisman can come good.
'Even though he didn't shoot the ball well, he was effective down the stretch,' Casey said. 'He got stuff done. I thought his bulldog tenacity set the tone for us defensively. We know he's not shooting the ball well, he's not making plays with shots that he normally makes.
'But we have to believe in him, we do believe in him, and he's going to come out of it.