Heat evaporates in stunning loss to Trail Blazers
Heat evaporates in stunning loss to Trail Blazers
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, to improve 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 fell 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.
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.
Portland began brightly but LeBron James poured in a three-pointer to give slow-starting Miami a 21-18 lead after a closely contested opening quarter.
With the “Big Three” of James, Bosh and Wade all getting into double figures, the Heat upped the tempo and padded their advantage to 52-39 half time.
Portland ended the third quarter on a 14-7 run to cut Miami’s lead to 68-63 but the Heat appeared to have the game in control midway through the fourth before the home team took over in spectacular fashion.
Pacers 81, Knicks 76: At Indianapolis, Paul George scored seven points in a 13-0 fourth-quarter run and finished with 24, leading Indiana past short-handed New York.
The Pacers have won 12 of 15, including a sweep of the other two Eastern Conference division leaders — Miami and the Knicks — this week.
New York was led by J.R. Smith with 25 points on a night they clearly missed Carmelo Anthony, who was suspended for Monday’s postgame confrontation with Boston’s Kevin Garnett. Without Anthony, the Knicks fell nine points below their previous season-low point total (85).
New York rallied from a 49-38 third-quarter deficit and started the fourth with a 60-58 lead.
Mavericks 117, Kings 112, OT: At Sacramento, California, O.J. Mayo had 24 points and 10 rebounds, Vince Carter scored 23 points off the bench and Dallas rallied from 17 points down to beat Sacramento in overtime.
Shawn Marion added 19 points and 10 rebounds to help the Mavericks snap a four-game losing streak. Dallas, which had lost 10 of 11, finished its short road trip 1-2.
With the franchise’s possible sale and relocation to Seattle on the minds of Kings fans, DeMarcus Cousins had 29 points and nine rebounds before getting ejected in overtime for elbowing Carter in the face. Tyreke Evans scored 20 points and Isaiah Thomas had 18 points for the Kings, who lost their third straight game.
Heartbreak for Mohamed Salah and Egypt as Russia all but secure last-16 spot
ST. PETERSBURG: Russia scored three goals in a 15-minute span early in the second half to set up a 3-1 win over Egypt on Tuesday, moving the host nation to the brink of the World Cup’s knockout stage.
Mohamed Salah won and converted a penalty for a consolation goal on his return from injury but Egypt’s first World Cup in 28 years could be over in barely five days following a second straight loss.
Ahmed Fathi poked the ball into his own net — the fifth own-goal of the tournament — to put Russia ahead in the 47th minute. Then Denis Cheryshev and Artyom Dzyuba scored in quick succession to leave Russia on course for a victory that followed up a 5-0 opening-night win over Saudi Arabia.
It was Cheryshev’s third goal of the World Cup, putting him tied with Cristiano Ronaldo at the top of the scoring chart.
Russia’s place in the round of 16 will be assured if Uruguay wins or draws against the Saudis on Wednesday. Those two scenarios would also eliminate Egypt, which started with a 1-0 loss to Uruguay.
The hopes of 100 million Egyptians were raised when Salah was selected in the starting lineup, the Liverpool forward making his comeback after 3 1/2 weeks out with damaged ligaments in his left shoulder after a tangle with Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos in the Champions League final.
Salah trotted out for his pre-match warmup to roars from Egypt fans, who at times appeared to outnumber their Russian counterparts. They shouted every time Salah’s face flashed up on the big screen and when his name was announced before kickoff.
Yet from the start, it was clear that Salah was staying out of anything too physical and there was no concerted effort from his Egypt teammates to pick him out each time. He didn’t touch the ball until the seventh minute.
He did win the penalty — confirmed by the video assistant referee after Salah was pulled down by Roman Zobnin. He converted it in the 73rd minute, but it wasn’t enough. Egypt is still without a victory in six World Cup matches.
Russia is nearly assured of advancing from the group stage for the first time since the Soviet era.
Cheryshev, who entered the World Cup as a fringe player, is proving lethal in front of goal, with his latest a side-footed effort from close range from Mario Fernandes’ cross in the 59th. Dzyuba’s goal was more direct, the striker chesting down a long ball from defender Ilya Kutepov, beating his marker and curling home a low finish.