The Miami forward shot 19-for-26 from the field and finished with 45 points and 15 rebounds Thursday night to lead the Heat's 98-79 rout of the Celtics in Boston, forcing a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference finals.
James ended up four points shy of his playoff career-high while playing 45 minutes, not sitting down until the victory was long secured.
The Heat needed a huge game from James. His teammates combined to shoot 36 percent from the floor. Dwyane Wade made just 6 of 17 shots in scoring 17 points. No other Miami player had more than nine points.
The Celtics had their own shooting problems, making just 1 of 14 from beyond the arc. Paul Pierce missed 14 of his 18 field-goal attempts and was held to nine points. Rajon Rondo had team-highs of 21 points and 10 assists but also had seven turnovers.
Game 7 will be Saturday at Miami. The Heat are trying to make it to the NBA finals for a second straight year.
In other state sports news...
- Tampa Bay's David Price outdueled New York's CC Sabathia in a battle of seven-game winners as the Rays beat the Yankees 7-3 to retain a share of first place in the American League East. Price allowed three hits and one run in five innings and struck out eight. Sabathia struck out 12 but surrendered three earned runs and seven hits in seven innings.
- The Atlanta Braves used the long-ball to down the Miami Marlins 8-2. Jason Heyward hit a pair of solo homers to center and Martin Prado and Micheal Bourn also homered for the Braves, who completed a three-game sweep of the Fish. Mike Minor got the win. Mark Buehrle suffered the loss, even though he only gave up three hits and two runs in six innings.
- Florida State and Florida will host NCAA Super Regionals this weekend. The Seminoles will open a best-of-three series against Stanford Friday night at 7. The Gators will host North Carolina State in a Super Regional beginning Saturday at 2 p.m. The winners will head to the College World Series in Omaha.