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hong wei Oct 9
Here were the two primary goals for the Miami Heat on the final night of the regular season: Beat the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference [url=http://www.officialavalanche.com/...ikko-rantanen-jersey]Mikko Rantanen Jersey[/url] , and get Wayne Ellington into the team record book.

Done, and done.

Ellington scored a career-high 32 points while setting Miami’s single-season record for 3-pointers, and the Heat wrapped up the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs by beating the Toronto Raptors 116-109 in overtime Wednesday night.

”It’s just absolutely fitting that it would come down to an overtime game with this group,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ”It was a heck of a regular season. Now we’re on to the second act.”

That starts this weekend, when the Heat go to Philadelphia and take on the third-seeded 76ers in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.

Kelly Olynyk, Dwyane Wade, Justise Winslow, James Johnson and Tyler Johnson each scored 11 points for the Heat, who got 10 each from Hassan Whiteside and Bam Adebayo.

Ellington needed six 3s to beat the record of 225 that Damon Jones set in the 2004-05 season. He finished the season with 227, and now gets to go to his hometown to start the postseason.

”A big-time overtime win,” Ellington said. ”We feel like if you put us up against anybody in seven games, we can beat them. That’s the kind of team we feel like we are. It’s going to be a dogfight no matter what.”

Kyle Lowry scored 28 points for Toronto, which already had the top seed in the East wrapped up – but played its regulars in this one anyway. The Raptors will meet No. 8 Washington in the first round.

DeMar DeRozan had 19 points [url=http://www.officialpenguinsproshop.com/...tom-kuhnhackl-jersey]Tom Kuhnhackl Jersey[/url] , Jakob Poeltl had 16 and Jonas Valanciunas scored 12 for the Raptors, who were outscored 11-4 in overtime.

”We had a goal set out that we would win 60 games before these 82 were up,” DeRozan said. ”That didn’t happen. Time to clear that. None of that matters now. Get ready for this weekend.”

Even with nothing standings-wise to play for, the Raptors had no qualms about using their starters. Lowry, DeRozan, Valanciunas and Serge Ibaka combined to play more than 120 minutes.

The Raptors were 22-60 in 2010-11, the season before coach Dwane Casey came to Toronto. They ended this season 59-23.

”It’s taken us a while to build our program, to get it where it is,” said Casey, a coach of the year candidate this season. ”This (Heat) program has multiple championships and we’re trying to get to that level organically. And it takes time. You’re just not going to wave a magic wand and turn a player into Magic Johnson or Larry Bird or anybody like that. It’s part of the process, and that’s something I know our organization is proud of.”

Ellington’s 3-pointer with 18.8 seconds left in regulation put Miami up two, and Poeltl tied it with a tip-in. But Miami scored the first five points of the extra session and didn’t look back.

A year ago on the last night of the season, the Heat were left teary-eyed and with a sour taste in their mouths after missing the playoffs.

This time [url=http://www.ravenscheapstores.com/kenny-young-jersey-cheap]Kenny Young Jersey[/url] , Wade and Udonis Haslem toasted each other with flutes of fancy champagne to celebrate their 15th NBA season.

”It really means something, every time you complete a season especially as you get up there,” Wade said. ”So both of us are a little tipsy.”

TIP-INS

Raptors: Key reserve Fred VanVleet left with 1:32 remaining in regulation after apparently getting hurt while trying to fight through a screen. He stayed down for several seconds near the Toronto bench before getting helped off the floor. … Toronto went 25-16 on the road, and 40-12 against East opponents.

Heat: All-Star point guard Goran Dragic missed the game with soreness in his right knee. The Heat are not concerned about his availability for Game 1 of the playoffs. … Miami finished 26-15 at home.

FIORENTINO HONORED

Tony Fiorentino, one of the Heat original employees who started as an assistant coach in the team’s inaugural season 30 years ago before transitioning to broadcasting, was honored in a halftime ceremony. Fiorentino has spent the last 15 season as the Heat television analyst, and will assume a team-ambassador position when Miami’s playoff run ends.

SIZZLING POELTL

To say Poeltl is going into the postseason on a hot streak is an understatement. Poeltl ended the regular season having made 34 of his last 39 shots in the final eight games. Poeltl is also the only Raptors player who appeared in all 82 regular-season contests.

UP NEXT

Raptors: Face Washington in Eastern Conference quarterfinals.

Heat: Face Philadelphia in Eastern Conference quarterfinals.

Montreal coach Claude Julien acknowledged the Canadiens can benefit by losing, increasing their chances in the NHL draft lottery.

Julien, though, insisted coaches and players are wired to win and refuse to compete with any other goal in mind.

Nicolas Deslauriers‘ second goal put Montreal ahead late in the second period and they held on to beat the Detroit Red Wings 4-3 on Thursday night.

The Original Six teams are out of the playoff race, finishing up the season playing only for pride.

”Both teams want to win. It’s engrained in us,” Julien said. ”I’ve been told – I can honestly tell you – to try to win every game we can.”

Antti Niemi had 23 saves for the Canadiens, started in place of struggling star Carey Price.

Detroit’s Jared Coreau stopped 24 shots [url=http://www.newenglandpatriotsteamonline.com]Patriots Authentic Jerseys[/url] , giving Jimmy Howard the night off.

Montreal took advantage of the Red Wings turning the puck over, including early in the third period when Artturi Lehkonen scored to create a two-goal cushion.

”We’re always trying to force turnovers and play a fastbreak game,” Lehkonen said. ”We got some opportunities and we did a good job finishing them.”

Darren Helm scored less than a minute later to pull Detroit within a goal, but it couldn’t’ score again to extend the game.

Montreal had won just two of its previous 10 games and will miss the playoffs for the second time in three years.

”I’m not used to losing. I don’t like to lose,” Julien said. ”But at the same time, I have to be objective and look at the situation and there were some challenges along the way that we didn’t expect, a number of injuries, and players having to move up in the lineup in areas they weren’t quite ready for.”

The Red Wings have lost two straight and 15 of their last 19 games. They will be relegated to watching the postseason for a second consecutive season after earning a spot in the playoffs 25 straight times.

”We’ve found ways to lose too many times this year,” Detroit defenseman Jonathan Ericsson said. ”We lost a lot of one-goal games after leading games in the third. And, it’s just not acceptable that we didn’t close out more games.”

The storied franchises hope they’re fortunate enough to get the No. 1 pick overall to likely draft Swedish defenseman Rasmus Dahlin.

Detroit wants to rebuild around Dylan Larkin, who split two Canadiens on a rush and beat Niemi with a backhander late in the first to make it 1-all after Deslauriers had his first goal early in the game.

”Dylan continues to build his game,” Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said. ”That goal, I think [url=http://www.49erscheapstore.com/tarvarius-moore-jersey-cheap]Tarvarius Moore Jersey[/url] , is a good sign for us.”

Tyler Bertuzzi put the Red Wings ahead early in the second, but they lost the lead as they have many times this season.

Brendan Gallagher pulled the Canadiens into a tie midway through the second period and Deslauriers’ 10th put them ahead with 5:21 left in the period.

”It’s been a tough year so this was a nice bonus at the end of the year,” Deslauriers said.

NOTES: Montreal D Jeff Petry was cheered on by at least one fan in the stands. His father, Dan Petry, an 18-game winner for the 1984 World Series champion Detroit Tigers, attended the game. … Coreau, who has spent much of the season in the AHL, is 0-5 with the Red Wings this season. … Gallagher has a team-high 31 goals, a double-digit lead over the rest of his teammates and seven more goals than he scored in any of his previous five seasons. … Larkin has a five-game points streak.

UP NEXT

Canadiens: Wrap up the season Saturday night at Toronto.

Red Wings: End the season at home against the New York Islanders on Saturday night.

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