No Wade means plenty of problems for the Heat

From the Associated Press

Dirk Nowitzki had 31 points and 11 rebounds and the Dallas Mavericks took advantage of Dwyane Wade’s absence to beat the Miami Heat, 112-100, on Thursday night for their 10th straight victory in a rematch of last season’s NBA Finals.

Miami was playing in Dallas for the first time since winning the title in Game 6 of the Finals last June. Wade, who averaged nearly 35 points in that series and was the most valuable player, is considering season-ending surgery after dislocating his left shoulder Wednesday night in a loss at Houston. Without surgery, he could still miss six to eight weeks.

Shaquille O’Neal had 17 points and eight rebounds for the Heat, which struggled to generate offense without Wade -- third in the NBA in scoring with a 28.8 average. Miami’s starting backcourt of Jason Williams and Gary Payton went a combined four for 15 from the floor.

It got feisty in the third quarter when Heat forward Antoine Walker was ejected for a flagrant foul on Nowitzki. O’Neal also was called for a flagrant foul on Devin Harris earlier in the third, but he was not ejected.


Washington 109, Sacramento 106 -- Gilbert Arenas scored 30 of his 43 points in the first half at Washington and the Wizards blew a 17-point fourth-quarter lead and survived a video review at the buzzer.

With 0.7 seconds left, John Salmons took a long pass and made a turnaround jump shot at the three-point arc. Officials first ruled it a good two-point basket, but replay showed it to be a three-point shot that was released just after the clock hit 0.0.

Arenas had made only one of two free throws with 0.7 remaining, giving the Kings a chance to tie. He had an active box score: 12 for 22 from the field, three for eight from three-point range, 16 for 17 from the free-throw line, seven rebounds, seven assists, three steals and nine of the Wizards’ season-high 23 turnovers.

Sacramento’s Ron Artest had 21 of his 32 points by halftime, and 22 of Mike Bibby’s 30 came after the break.

Chicago 84, Cleveland 78 -- Ben Wallace had 14 points, 19 rebounds, a season-high seven blocked shots and two big free throws in the final minutes to help the Bulls end a six-game losing streak on the Cavaliers’ home court.

The Bulls took control with a 14-5 fourth-quarter run. Wallace, a 41% free-throw shooter, made his only two attempts with the Bulls leading, 78-73.

LeBron James scored 29 points for the Cavaliers, who continued their NBA-worst free-throw shooting by making eight of 16. Chicago made all 12 of its free-throw attempts.