Heat finish trek with win in Phoenix
Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Chris Bosh had 24 points, LeBron James battled through an illness to score 21 and the Miami Heat closed out a six-game road trip with a 97-88 win over the Phoenix Suns.
Shane Battier hit four 3-pointers for the Heat, who wrapped up their trek with a 4-2 mark. Miami's Dwyane Wade missed his second straight game with a sprained left foot.
"This was another game where we had to deal with a little bit of adversity," said Miami coach Erik Spoelstra. "Dwyane was still out and LeBron was clearly under the weather. We appreciate him even going and playing tonight and give us his presence. It's another gutty win and we showed some character."
Markieff Morris led five Phoenix players in double figures with 16 points. Michael Beasley had 14 points and eight rebounds in the Suns' third straight loss.
Miami opened the game on a 9-0 run, but the teams were deadlocked at 23 after 12 minutes. The Heat pushed its lead back to nine in the second quarter only to see the Suns pull even at halftime, 52-52.
A Norris Cole dunk put Miami up 75-60 with 2:53 remaining in the third quarter. Phoenix closed out the frame on an 11-0 surge, and Morris' layup tied the game at 79 with 8:29 left to play.
Ray Allen ignited a 9-0 Miami burst by hitting a bank shot, but the Suns refused to go away. A Goran Dragic steal and subsequent layup trimmed the deficit to 90-88 with 2:11 remaining. Miami held Phoenix scoreless the rest of the way and sealed the win at the foul line.
"It's just too hard to play against the world championship team, even without Dwyane Wade, you get down 15 you have to fight your way back," said Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry. "It's hard to get over the hump, it's too hard."
James played in his 700th career game ... Mario Chalmers contributed 11 points after leaving the Heat's last game with a triceps strain ...Udonis Haslem grabbed six rebounds. He is one shy of tying Alonzo Mourning (4,807) for the Heat record ... Miami has won six straight in the series and five in a row at Phoenix.