Heat take 3-1 lead, hold off Knicks 109-101 for Game 4 win

May 9, 2023  -MIAMI (AP) — The lead was shaky at times. The shooting went cold. The building got tense. There were moments when the Miami Heat looked like they were about to get themselves into trouble.

And they found a way — again.

The unpredictable ride of the eighth-seeded Heat continues, with Miami on the brink of yet another trip to the Eastern Conference finals. Jimmy Butler had 27 points and 10 assists, Bam Adebayo finished with 23 points and 13 rebounds and the Heat topped the New York Knicks 109-101 on Monday night.

“It was great that we were able to hold home court,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “But we know we have a task in New York.”

They’ll take a 3-1 lead into Madison Square Garden for Game 5 on Wednesday night, one win from wrapping up this East semifinal matchup and returning to the conference finals for the third time in four years.

“We’ve got a job to do,” Butler said, “and I think we’re very capable.”

Max Strus scored 16 points, Kyle Lowry added 15 and Caleb Martin had 10 for the Heat. Miami became only the fourth No. 8 seed in this NBA playoff format — now in its 40th season — to win at least seven games. The 1999 Knicks won 12 on their way to the NBA Finals, while Memphis won seven in 2011 and Philadelphia won seven in 2012.

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