The Miami Heat are just one game from the Eastern Conference finals.
Behind another strong performance by forward Jimmy Butler, the Heat rallied from an 11-point, fourth-quarter deficit Friday to defeat the Milwaukee Bucks 115-100 in Game 3 of the conference semifinals. They lead the best-of-seven series 3-0. No team in NBA history has rallied from three games down.
The fifth-seeded Heat once again showed their balance, putting five players in double-figures. Butler led the way with 30 points, including 15 in the fourth quarter. Guard Goran Dragic had 15 points while Bam Adebayo (20), Jae Crowder (17), and rookie Tyler Herro (13) were also key contributors. The Heat offset the loss of reserve Kelly Olynyk, who was a pregame scratch because of a knee injury.
The Bucks led 91-81 with 9:40 remaining before the Heat surge. They went on a 16-2 run during a four-minute stretch to get back into the game. After a slam dunk by Giannis Antetokounmpo, who finished with 21 points, 16 rebounds and nine assists, put the Bucks ahead 99-98 with 4:36 remaining, the Heat responded with a 6-0 run. Miami outscored Milwaukee 40-13 in the fourth quarter.
The Heat are attempting to advance to the conference finals for the first time since 2014, the last of their four consecutive trips to the NBA Finals with LeBron James. The Bucks, who were the No. 1 seed last year, face the possibility of an early exit in consecutive seasons as the team with the league's best record.
The Heat are 7-0 this postseason. Game 4 tips off at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday.
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