LOS ANGELES (AP) — Lou Williams scored 24 points and Luol Deng added 19 points and 14 rebounds in the Los Angeles Lakers’ fourth victory in 20 games, 127-100 over the Miami Heat on Friday night.
Goran Dragic scored 16 points for Miami before getting ejected along with Los Angeles’ Jordan Clarkson after a third-quarter scuffle in which both players appeared to be narrowly stopped from throwing punches.
With the Heat’s leading scorer in the locker room, the Lakers seized control in the fourth quarter of just their second win in 10 meetings with Miami. Williams led a decisive 19-4 run while scoring 16 points in the final period.
Willie Reed had 22 points and 12 rebounds for the Heat, who have lost seven of eight overall and nine of 10 on the road.
D’Angelo Russell scored 19 points, rookie Brandon Ingram had a career-high 17 and Julius Randle added 15 for the Lakers, who had their highest-scoring performance of the season.
Reed matched his career high, and James Johnson scored 20 points for the Heat.
The near-fight began when Dragic repeatedly made contact with Clarkson, who responded by knocking Dragic to the ground with a two-handed shove. Both players got up looking ready to throw punches, but officials and teammates separated them, with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra coming down to the other end of the court.
Johnson and Randle exchanged harsh words moments later, but were kept apart. Johnson scored nine points in the ensuing five minutes to keep the Heat close.
Jose Calderon received playing time in Clarkson’s absence, getting off the bench for the first time in 19 games since Dec. 3. The Spanish veteran struggled with a strained right hamstring in early December, but has been healthy lately.
Tyler Johnson brought fans of both teams out of their seats with a ferocious fast-break dunk on Williams in the second quarter.
Heat: C Hassan Whiteside rejoined his teammates in Los Angeles, and he could play Sunday after missing four straight games. The NBA’s leading rebounder got poked in the eye a week ago during a game against Boston, and several days of headaches and double vision only ended recently. … Dion Waiters had nine points off the bench in his second game since returning from a 20-game absence with a groin injury.
Lakers: Deng missed Thursday’s game with right biceps tendinitis. He spent the previous two seasons with Miami before agreeing to a four-year, $72 million free-agent deal with the Lakers. … The Lakers played their 40th game of the season, most in the NBA. Los Angeles hits the halfway point Sunday.
Heat: At the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday.
Lakers: Host the Orlando Magic on Sunday.
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