Without his veteran partner, Chris Bosh led the way for the Miami Heat, edging the visiting Utah Jazz, 92-91, on Thursday at the American Airlines Arena. Bosh finished 25 points and added eight rebounds, four assists and four blocked shots for the Heat, which have won their third game in a row to improve to 6-3 for the season.
Heat’s starting shooting guard Dwyane Wade missed the game to attend to his son, who was hospitalized for undisclosed reasons. In place of Wade, Josh Richardson started at SG and he contributed eight points in 21 minutes for his first career start in the NBA.
Another second-stringer stepped-up as well with Tyler Johnson adding 17 points on 8-of-12 shooting with one steal and two blocked shots. Goran Dragic had 14 points, four assists and two steals and Hassan Whiteside had nine points, 14 rebounds and five blocked shots.
The Heat built a 12- point lead early in the second quarter but the Jazz made a run to make it 46-45 in favor of Miami by the halftime break. Utah continued to ride the momentum and grabbed the lead in the third quarter, which ended at 66-66.
The Heat started the fourth on a 13-4 run but the Jazz kept fighting back and trailed by just two points, 84-86, with under a minute to go in the game. Johnson made a jumper to give the Heat some leeway and Dragic iced the game from the line to give the Heat the victory.
Miami continues their seven-game home stand facing the Minnesota Timberwolves, Sacramento Kings, Philadelphia 76ers and New York Knicks in their next four. Utah continues a four-game road trip taking on the Orlando Magic and Atlanta Hawks in their next two outings.