Lakers outlast Heat in final LeBron James vs. Dwyane Wade duel as Miami's star veteran misses game-tying 3
LeBron and Wade put on one heck of a show in Los Angeles
LeBron James' squad outlasted Dwyane Wade's team one last time.
As the close friends and former teammates dueled for the final time in a regular-season game that will go down as a classic, LeBron's Los Angeles Lakers defeated Wade's Miami Heat,108-105, on Monday night.
The game was close throughout and it came down to the final shot. As the Heat trailed 108-105 with possession of the ball and 22.5 seconds remaining, it was clear who was being set up to shoot. The Heat attempted to get Wade a good look from 3-point range -- only for James to harass him on the perimeter for most of the possession. The veteran shooting guard finally picked up his dribble at the top of the arc before hoisting a desperation 3-point attempt as James contested it.
The shot went off the backboard and the Heat's Rodney McGruder grabbed the offensive rebound before Justise Winslow missed one last 3-point attempt for Miami.
James finished the night with a near-triple-double performance of 28 points, 12 assists and nine rebounds, and Wade posted his finest effort of the season -- and first double-double of 2018-19 -- with 15 points and 10 assists.
In a sign of the respect that both players have for one another, they exchanged jerseys, with Wade signing his No. 3 Heat jersey for James.
The scene in Los Angeles was magical even before tipoff. In something that you rarely see in sports, Wade was given a standing ovation by the Lakers crowd at Staples Center knowing that this would be his last appearance there. The fans got what they came for, having been treated to a matchup of two of the greatest players not only from the 2003 NBA Draft class, but in league history.
They discussed their admiration for each other after the game.
With the win, LeBron won the all-time matchup over Wade, having won 16 games to Wade's 15 victories in the series.
Although the two players are clearly at different stages of their careers -- LeBron still in his prime, Wade in his final season -- they definitely did not disappoint as they put on one last great duel as they closed the chapter on their rivalry once and for all.
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