Wizards Top Heat to Clinch Playoff Spot

Four straight postseasons for the first time since mid-80s
By Lev Weinstein,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 5, 2008 12:13 AM CDT
Washington Wizards forward Caron Butler celebrates his slam dunk during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Miami Heat, Friday, April 4, 2008, in Washington.    ((AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari))
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(Newser) – Caron Butler scored 29 points and the Washington Wizards beat the Miami Heat 109-95 on Friday night to clinch a playoff spot for the fourth straight season. It's the first time the team has qualified for the playoffs in four consecutive seasons since it made five straight appearances from 1983-88.

The woeful Heat set a franchise record with 19 3-pointers and still couldn't beat the Wizards, who were without Antawn Jamison for the first time this season. Jamison, who averages 21.5 points and a team-leading 10.2 rebounds a game, was sidelined with a sprained right shoulder. Darius Songaila, who started in Jamison's place, had 12 points, eight rebounds and five assists. Andray Blatche had 17 points.