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Heat record first NBA win of season while Celtics lose

LeBron James won his first NBA game in a Miami Heat shirt, after his team defeated the Philadelphia 76ers.
LeBron James won his first NBA game in a Miami Heat shirt, after his team defeated the Philadelphia 76ers.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Miami Heat win first NBA game of season on Wednesday while Boston Celtics lost
  • Celtics beat new-look Heat in the opening game of the season on Tuesday
  • The Heat defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 98-87 with LeBron James scoring 16 points
  • Celtics lost to the Cleveland Cavaliers 95-87

(CNN) -- The new-look Miami Heat recorded their first win of the NBA season on Wednesday, but their conquerors in the opening round the Boston Celtics could not back up the victory.

On Tuesday, 17-time NBA finals champions the Celtics defeated the much hyped up Heat and their star signings LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh in the most watched regular season basketball game of all-time.

But in a reversal of fortunes in Wednesday's games, the Heat defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 98-87 with "The Big Three" securing their first win while playing together in the Florida-side's shirt.

Meanwhile the Celtics -- who lost last season's final to the Los Angeles Lakers -- struggled against LeBron's old team the Cleveland Cavaliers, losing 95-87.

I saw a tangible difference in how we were playing
--Heat coach Erik Spoelstra
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Playing at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, the Heat performed closer to what had been expected of basketball's new dream team, spurred on by their disappointing loss to Boston.

"I saw a tangible difference in how we were playing," coach Erik Spoelstra told the official NBA website. "Guys took it to heart and wanted to come out with a better disposition defensively and keep the ball in front of us to challenge at the rim."

Wade scored 30 points, James 16 and Bosh 15 to complete a better performance from the trio.

But it was another James, James Jones, who really stood out for the Heat, finishing with 20 points on nine attempts and receiving praise from his star teammates.

"JJ was unbelievable today," James told the NBA website while Wade added: "Give it up for JJ, really stepping up."

But Wade believes there is still more to come from Miami, who almost allowed Philadelphia to catch them in the final quarter.

"We're not at our peak, we're not even close,'' he said. "Eventually when it's time to be there, we will.''

The Celtics were stunned by the Cleveland Cavaliers, playing in their first match for more than seven years without LeBron James, who announced his decision to leave the Ohio side in an hour long television program in July.

Boston coach Doc Rivers was congratulated by Cleveland fans for having overcome the Heat, but his side then received no mercy from the Cavaliers.

"Guys in this locker room believe. We've been listening to what people are predicting for us," Cleveland forward Antawn Jamison said.

"We're going to let our game do the talking. It's probably going to take a month or so for people to realize, 'Hey, this is a team that can win and compete for the playoffs.'''

For the Cavaliers, JJ Hickson finished with 21 points and Daniel Gibson 16 -- all in the second half -- to hold off the challenge from the Celtics.

The east coast side had led by 11 points in the third quarter but were outscored 27-14 in the fourth.

"`We took them a little bit too lightly,'' Shaquille O'Neal, who spent last season with Cleveland, admitted to the NBA website.

Elsewhere in Wednesday's other NBA Eastern Conference games, the New York Knicks beat the Toronto Raptors 98-93, the Oklahoma City Thunder defeated Chicago Bulls 106-95 and The New Jersey Nets won 101-98 against the Detroit Pistons.