Miami Heat reach the NBA Conference Finals by beating New York Knicks

Miami Heat reach the NBA Conference Finals with Jimmy Butler starring once again in 96-92 win to eliminate the Knicks – as Jalen Brunson’s 41 points can’t save New York this time

  • The Miami Heat just edged out the New York Knicks in Game 6 on Friday evening
  • Jalen Brunson was in fine form once again but it did not rescue the team again
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The Miami Heat have eliminated the New York Knicks to advance to the NBA Eastern Conference Finals Friday night.

Jimmy Butler starred once again for the No. 8 seed while Jalen Brunson’s second monumental effort of the week was not enough to save the Knicks’ season.

Butler scored 24 points in the 96-92 victory at the FTX Arena as Miami won their semifinal series in six games.

He also collected eight rebounds as the Heat became just the second eighth seed to reach the Finals since 1984.

Miami’s Bam Adebayo recorded 23 points and nine rebounds and Max Strus scored 14 points. 

Jimmy Butler was crucial once again for the Miami Heat in their Game 6 win over the Knicks

Heat players celebrate after reaching the NBA Eastern Conference Finals on Friday night

New York’s star man Jalen Brunson produced another monumental 41 points in 96-92 loss

Miami Heat guard Max Strus (L) hugs Miami Heat forward Kevin Love (R) embrace after win

Kyle Lowry of the Miami Heat talks with Brunson after the Knicks were eliminated from playoffs

Kyle Lowry added 11 points and nine assists off the bench for the Heat, who became the first No. 8 seed to reach the conference finals since the Knicks did so in 1999.

Miami advances to the conference finals for the third time in four seasons and will face the winner of the semifinal series between the third-seeded Philadelphia 76ers and second-seeded Boston Celtics. That series is tied at three wins apiece, with Game 7 set for Sunday in Boston.

Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals will be played in Boston or Philadelphia on Wednesday.

The Heat benefited from a 38-20 edge in points in the paint to offset a dismal 25.9 percent shooting display from 3-point range (7 of 27).

Brunson’s impressive 41 points came from 14-of-22 shooting from the floor, including 5-of-10 success from 3-point range. It was the most points in a playoff game by a Knicks guard ever.

Julius Randle recorded 15 points and 11 rebounds and RJ Barrett and Josh Hart each had 11 points for the fifth-seeded Knicks.

Adebayo sank a jumper, Strus added a 3-pointer and Butler converted a three-point play to push Miami’s advantage to 85-76 with 6:25 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Butler was in fine form again for the Heat in the postseason, scoring 24 points in Game 6 win

Strus #31 of the Miami Heat goes to the basket in tight showdown at the FTX Arena

New York went on a 14-7 run, capped when Brunson made a pair of free throws following a flagrant foul and Hart added a layup with 54.1 seconds to play. 

The surge brought the Knicks within 92-90, but Butler made a pair of free throws after Brunson’s costly turnover and New York’s Quentin Grimes misfired on a 3-point attempt before Strus converted two at the foul line to seal the win.

Brunson bolted out of the blocks by scoring 15 quick points and Randle capped New York’s 16-3 run to stake his team to a 31-17 lead.

Adebayo completed a flourish by Miami with an emphatic dunk, and Strus made a pair of free throws with 37.1 seconds remaining to give the Heat a 51-50 advantage entering halftime.

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