MIAMI (AP) – Dwyane Wade scored Miami’s final eight points in the fourth quarter, and James Posey and Gary Payton each hit a key 3-pointer in overtime to help the Heat rally past the New Orleans Hornets 109-102 on Tuesday night.

Wade finished with 25 points and 10 assists, but it was his play down the stretch during regulation that gave the Heat a chance to win their third straight game without center Shaquille O’Neal.

With Miami trailing 90-83 with 1:59 left, Wade scored the final seven points, including a tying jumper with 35 seconds remaining to force overtime at 90-all.

Posey started overtime with a 3 – his first points of the game – and Payton followed with another as Miami opened a 96-90 lead to take command. Posey knocked down another 3-pointer as Miami built a 101-94 cushion with 1:43 remaining.

The Hornets lost for the third straight game, but not without giving the Heat a scare.

P.J. Brown’s three-point play capped a 10-2 spurt, putting New Orleans ahead 87-80 with 4:08 left in the fourth quarter.

A short jumper by Brown gave the Hornets a 90-83 lead before Wade took over. During that stretch, he had an outside jumper, a three-point play and another jumper from the top of the key to tie it.

Following a miss by David West, the Heat had the final possession, but Wade’s shot from beyond the top of the key bounced out as time expired.

The Hornets trailed 42-41 at halftime and 62-59 late in the third period before closing with a flurry behind Bostjan Nachbar, who nailed a 3-pointer and a short hook to help New Orleans build a 69-66 lead entering the fourth.

The Heat were playing their sixth straight game without O’Neal, out with a sprained right ankle.

Antoine Walker scored 21 points off the bench for Miami, and Jason Williams had 17. Alonzo Mourning added 10 points, 12 rebounds and five blocked shots for the Heat.

Brown scored 24 points and added 12 rebounds against his former team. West scored a career-high 16 points for the Hornets. Chris Paul also scored 16 to go along with 10 assists.

Notes: G Kirk Snyder started his first game of the year for the Hornets and scored seven points in 12 minutes. Snyder started in place of J.R. Smith, who sat out with a sprained left ankle. … Former Heat F Rasual Butler scored two points in 15 minutes. … Brown had his third double-double of the season. … Miami had 11 turnovers after committing a season-high 27 on Saturday against Charlotte. … The Heat have won 51 of their past 58 home games dating to the 2003-04 season. … In a bizarre sequence in the second quarter, Payton and Hornets coach Byron Scott were called for technical fouls after jawing while Desmond Mason stood at the foul line.

AP-ES-11-15-05 2244EST


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