Zhizhi triumphs in debut with Dallas

Posted: Friday, April 06, 2001

DALLAS -- Wang Zhizhi, the first China-born player in NBA history, scored six points and grabbed three rebounds in eight minutes Thursday night as the Dallas Mavericks beat the Atlanta Hawks 108-94.

After getting his first shot blocked, Wang hit a jumper from the top of the key, made two free throws and then a short shot that put the Mavericks over 100 points, ensuring fans of a free chalupa at a fast-food restaurant.

Juwan Howard led Dallas with 20 points and reserve Shawn Bradley had 16 points and 15 rebounds as the Mavericks moved into a tie with Utah for the fourth spot in the Western Conference.

Atlanta, led by 23 points by Nazr Mohammed, lost its 10th straight on the road.

With Dallas having clinched its first playoff berth in 11 years in its previous game, the focus was on Wang, who on Wednesday signed for the rest of this season and next season.

Rockets 91, SuperSonics 88

HOUSTON -- Kenny Thomas blocked a Ruben Patterson shot with 10 seconds to play and then dunked on the other end of the court to seal the Houston's victory over Seattle.

Cuttino Mobley had 21 points and Thomas had 17 points and 10 rebounds as the Rockets overcame a Sonics rally late in the fourth quarter.

Seattle had rallied from a 14-point deficit and trailed only 89-88 when Thomas blocked Patterson's shot.

Gary Payton and Vin Baker each had 20 points for Seattle. After winning 10 of 11, the Sonics have now lost their last two.

Lakers 100, Bulls 88

CHICAGO -- Shaquille O'Neal powered his way to 39 points and the Los Angeles Lakers posted their 50th victory of the year in crushing the Bears.

With Kobe Bryant again sidelined by a foot injury, the Lakers just pounded the ball into Shaq and he responded with a 13-of-17 shooting night and also made 13-of-22 free throws to go with 10 rebounds.

O'Neal, fouled hard several times during the game, was called for a flagrant foul after knocking Jake Voskuhl to the floor. Brian Shaw and O'Neal were subsequently called for technical fouls.

Brad Miller led the Bulls with 21 points.

Kings 92, Jazz 86

SALT LAKE CITY -- Chris Webber scored 26 points and Peja Stojakovic added 25 as Sacramento beat Utah.

Utah trailed by nine points early in the fourth quarter but pulled within 87-86 when John Stockton scored on a fast break with 48.3 seconds remaining.

But the Kings got three late free throws from Stojakovic and Doug Christie, and Bobby Jackson got free for a breakaway basket.

For years, the Delta Center was one of the NBA's toughest arenas for visiting teams, but the Jazz are 1-9 at home this season against the top five teams in the Western Conference.

Karl Malone scored 21 and Donyell Marshall had 14 for Utah.

Spurs 101, Nuggets 80

DENVER -- Tim Duncan scored 15 of his 36 points in the third quarter and had 13 rebounds in San Antonio's win over Denver.

Derek Anderson added 17 points to help the Spurs maintain their 2 1/2-game lead over Sacramento for the top spot in the West. San Antonio (53-22) also is one game ahead of Philadelphia (52-23) in the push for the NBA's best record.

Robert Pack had 20 points to lead five Nuggets in double figures.

Knicks 93, Wizards 80

NEW YORK -- Marcus Camby converted an alley-oop dunk with 3:07 left to complete a late 9-0 run that led New York to a tougher-than-expected win over Washington.

The Knicks scored 19 of the game's final 21 points to win their third straight and move a half-game ahead of fourth-place Miami in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

Camby finished with 16 points, 13 rebounds and two blocks -- both of which came in the final minute. Allan Houston added 23 points and Glen Rice had 18.

Richard Hamilton scored 31 and Courtney Alexander 22 for Washington.

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