Sizzling Heat miss National Basketball Association playoffs despite record rally

The Heat are looking to go from an inauspicious beginning to a happy ending, hoping that there is one more miracle left in a season in which they started 11-30, but have since gone 29-11 (per the Elias Sports Bureau, they have the best record for a team that was 19 under.500 at any point during the season). User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.

Miami finished tied with Chicago at 41-41, but the Bulls were the team that earned the Eastern Conference's eighth and final playoff spot because they won the season series over the Heat 2-1.

Sure, they got blown out to let Chicago walk into the playoffs, which - coupled with Indiana's win - eliminated Miami. The Celtics are the sixth different franchise to grab the No. 1 seed in the East in the past six seasons — Chicago did in 2012, followed by Miami, Indiana, Atlanta, Cleveland and now Boston.

James Johnson had 12 points, eight rebounds and eight assists, capping off a season in which he served as a pleasant surprise and fan favorite.

The Wizards, which sat All-Star point guard John Wall and starters Bradley Beal and Markieff Morris, were led by Trey Burke's 27 points off the bench.

The 1-8 and 2-7 matchups in the East can not be finalized until Wednesday (Thursday in Manila). "You either win and you continue, or you lose and you have an exit meeting". The Miami Heat aren't going with him.

The Pacers controlled most of the game, although the Hawks gave them a little scare in the fourth quarter when they cut their deficit to nine. The Bulls looked like they'd make it another Orlando-like domination by taking a quick 34-15 lead early in the second quarter.

But they will go no place else now, and the next result of note for Miami will come at the May 16 draft lottery.

Bulls: Hoiberg will continue to monitor Wade's minutes. The Pacers are 15-7 this season when he shoots better than 50 percent from the field. "If something is going to stop me from where I need to be running-wise, then I won't play". Especially because we know how much hard work we put in, how much we sacrificed for each other.

Rajon Rondo was back in the Chicago starting lineup after missing the past three games with a sprained right wrist.

To all of our members in the NetsDaily community, we thank you for another fun and interesting season. McClellan's college coach - Miami's Jim Larranaga - was courtside. It could be an easy win for Chicago, which means they will make the playoffs with a win.

James Harden recorded his 22nd triple-double and Houston tuned up for the post-season with a win over Minnesota. Dion Waiters (ankle) missed his 13th straight game. Eerie similarities: Both those Blazers and this Heat team finished 41-41, and both had Josh McRoberts on the roster.

Brooklyn is 11-12 since March 1, after going 9-49 this season through the end of February.

A shot at upsets isn't the reason this won't happen, though.

Another balanced effort: When talking about this Heat team, Erik Spoelstra likes to say the "sum is greater than the parts". "One bite at a time", he said.