|Date of game: 4/22/2012
Recap: Miami vs. Houston
Miami, FL (Sports Network) - LeBron James scored 32 points as the Miami Heat downed the Houston Rockets, 97-88, in their regular-season home finale on Sunday.
James finished with eight rebounds and five assists and Norris Cole contributed 16 points as Miami closed out the regular season with a 28-5 record at home, which will at least tie for the best in the NBA.
"It was a good team win," Miami head coach Erik Spoelstra said. "It was nice to have LeBron (James) back, but other guys really stepped up."
Heat stars Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh were sidelined. Wade is day-to-day with a left index finger dislocation he suffered on Saturday against Washington while Bosh continues to rest at the tail end of a bruising season.
Chandler Parsons netted a career-high 23 points for the Rockets and Goran Dragic donated 16, but Houston's slim playoff hopes came to an end with their seventh loss in eight tries.
"It's frustrating, especially when we lost six in a row. We have to learn something from that, and hopefully next year we can come back stronger," Dragic said of not making the postseason.
The Heat had not led by more than two when, tied at 83 late in the fourth, James hit a three-pointer, Shane Battier picked off a pass, and Mike Miller knocked down another triple.
James Jones capped off the 8-0 spurt a bit later with a 19-foot jumper.
Dragic then drew a foul and hit a pair from the line to cut the Rockets' deficit to six, but they got no closer thereafter.
James put an exclamation mark on the victory by blowing past his defender and driving the baseline for an uncontested two-handed flush in the final minute.
Houston scored the first four points and led by as many as 13 in the first quarter, but the Heat rolled off a 9-0 run midway through the second and Miller's trey with 25.3 seconds to play in the half gave Miami its first lead of the game, at 45-44, which it took into intermission.Game Notes
Mario Chalmers did not play with flu-like symptoms and is day-to-day...Bosh and Ronny Turiaf were listed as inactive...Houston's Kyle Lowry is done for the remainder of the season with groin injury and sports hernia...Miami has won five straight over Houston...The Heat won the battle on the boards by a 48-37 margin.