LeBron James of the Miami Heat posts up against Kobe Bryant of the Lakers. (Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images )
Reporting from Miami
There was plenty of partying Thursday night on South Beach.
Surprisingly it wasn't because the Miami Heat finally won a game.
An annual music convention kicked into gear with internationally renowned DJs spinning into all hours of Thursday night, but the action a few hours earlier guaranteed that the Heat snapped a five-game losing streak.
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"It feels good to win a game with the way we've been losing games," guard Dwyane Wade said after Miami's 94-88 victory over the Lakers at American Airlines Arena.
Miami didn't care that the Lakers could have wrapped up a ninth consecutive victory if not for a mess of turnovers and bad shots. The score was tied, 88-88, but the Lakers failed to score on their last five possessions.
Wade had a rough shooting night (nine of 23) and so did James (seven of 17), but Chris Bosh had 24 points and the Heat reserves outscored those of the Lakers, 22-16.
Reserve forward Mike Miller had 12 points and seven rebounds in 16 minutes. Lightly regarded starting point guard Mario Chalmers scored all nine of his points in the first quarter.
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"Everyone was ready for when their number was called," James said.
The Heat swept the season series against the Lakers and became the only top Eastern Conference team to clinch the head-to-head tiebreaker with them.
The Lakers split the season series with Boston and Chicago. Orlando holds a 1-0 edge but the teams meet again Monday at Staples Center.