WASHINGTON Voshon Lenard scored 27 points and rookie Carmelo Anthony had 26 in his first NBA homecoming to lead the Denver Nuggets to a 117-87 rout of the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night.
The Nuggets took control with a 16-2 run in the third quarter to break a three-game losing streak and win for just the second time in 10 games. Denver, clinging to the final Western Conference playoff spot, moved 1 1/2 games ahead of ninth-place Utah.
Pacers 94, Raptors 84, OT
INDIANAPOLIS Ron Artest shut down Vince Carter in the fourth quarter and the Indiana Pacers scored the first eight points of overtime to win their sixth straight game. Jamaal Tinsley opened the extra period with a 3-pointer, Jermaine O'Neal hit a jumper and Reggie Miller added a deep 3-pointer as the shot clock was winding down to give Indiana an 89-81 lead.
Celtics 87, Knicks 84
NEW YORK Paul Pierce scored 23 points, including a difficult jumper with 24 seconds left, to give the Boston Celtics a six-game winning streak their longest of the season.
Pierce's shot from the left corner gave Boston an 85-82 lead, and Tim Thomas' drive brought the Knicks within one. Pierce gave Boston a two-point lead when he made one of two free throws with 17 seconds left.
Heat 100, Magic 89
MIAMI Reserve Rasual Butler scored 19 points, including 14 in the fourth quarter, and Eddie Jones also scored 19 for the Heat, who have won three straight.
Miami never trailed after Rafer Alston's 3-pointer with 2:31 left in the first quarter put the Heat ahead, 24-22. Orlando tied it twice in the third quarter. Butler's 3-pointer with 58.2 seconds remaining put Miami ahead 95-84, securing the victory.
Grizzlies 94, Spurs 88
MEMPHIS, Tenn. Pau Gasol scored 27 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter, and the Grizzlies gained their 40th win of the season.
Gasol's two free throws with 8.4 seconds left provided the winning margin in the Grizzlies' sixth consecutive win. The loss snapped a three-game winning streak for the San Antonio, which hadn't been beaten since March 1 also against Memphis.
Despite shooting 17-of-28 from the free throw line, Memphis won by dominating the middle and outscoring San Antonio 56-26 in the paint. The Spurs also were hindered by 26 turnovers, matching a season high.
76ers 89, Bulls 81
CHICAGO Kenny Thomas had 22 points and 13 rebounds and Aaron McKie added 21 points as Philadelphia overcame the absence of Allen Iverson.
Philadelphia, playing its second straight game without Iverson (right knee injury), won its third straight matching a season-high and snapped a four-game road losing streak.
Rockets 90, Clippers 85
HOUSTON Steve Francis had 24 points and Yao Ming scored eight of his 19 points in a fourth-quarter rally.
The Rockets got their third straight victory and their fifth in a row over the Clippers, but it took a final-period spurt to get the victory.
Trailing 73-71 in the fourth quarter, Houston got the ball on a turnover by Bobby Simmons and Yao's basket tied it with 8:20 to play.
A bad pass by Eddie House gave the Rockets their chance to go ahead, and Yao slammed a basket home for a 75-73 lead.
Timberwolves 105, SuperSonics 92
SEATTLE Latrell Sprewell emerged from a shooting slump to score 31 points, and the Minnesota Timberwolves ended a two-game losing streak.
Kevin Garnett had 29 points and 10 rebounds for the Timberwolves, who pulled away in the fourth quarter after taking a four-point lead into the final period. Garnett had 11 of his points in the fourth quarter.
Kings 96, Warriors 92
SACRAMENTO Doug Christie scored 23 points, Mike Bibby added 21 and Peja Stojakovic had 20.
Christie also had six assists and five rebounds, and Bibby scored four of his points in a key 40-second span with just under three minutes remaining.
With the Kings ahead 83-82, Bibby hit a jumper from the top of the key, then scored on a right-handed scoop layup while driving left. Nearly a minute later, Bibby missed on another drive attempt, but his shot was tipped in by Vlade Divac for a 89-82 lead with 1:23 to go.
Erick Dampier had 26 points and 18 rebounds for Golden State, which had two good opportunities to take the lead just prior to Bibby's late spurt. But both Cliff Robinson (15 points) and Jason Richardson (18 points, seven rebounds) missed drives in traffic on consecutive possessions.
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