Kings win, hold division top spot

Posted: Monday, April 09, 2001

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Vlade Divac scored 8 of his 13 points in the final seven minutes, and Peja Stojakovic hit a big jumper over Scottie Pippen with 27 seconds left as the Sacramento Kings beat the Portland Trail Blazers 98-89 Sunday.

Sacramento, led by Chris Webber and Stojakovic with 20 points apiece, maintained its lead in the Pacific Division by winning its third straight overall and 31st home game, the franchise's most home wins since the Kings moved to Sacramento.

Pippen had 21 to lead the Blazers, who lost for the fourth time in five games while slipping 1 1/2 games behind Dallas for the West's fifth seed.

Raptors 100, Bulls 88

TORONTO -- Vince Carter scored 33 points as Toronto extending its winning streak to four games. The Raptors have won eight of their last nine and are fifth in the Eastern Conference.

Elton Brand had 28 for the Bulls, who have lost 24 straight road games and eight overall. Chicago is all but assured of finishing with the league's worst record and would need to win five of its final six games to match the franchise low of 17 set last season.

Pacers 108, Nets 83

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Jalen Rose scored 19 of his 29 points in Indiana's 41-point third quarter as the Pacers improved their playoff chances. It was the Pacers' third straight win and opened a 1 1/2-game lead over the Boston Celtics in the race for the final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference.

Johnny Newman led the Nets with 22 points.

Heat 81, Knicks 76

MIAMI -- Tim Hardaway, held scoreless Friday for the first time in three years by Charlotte, scored 25 points to help Miami beat New York and take a one-game lead over the Knicks in the playoff race for the No. 3 seeding in the Eastern Conference.

Marcus Camby had 23 points and 16 rebounds for the Knicks, who were without swingman Latrell Sprewell, who missed the game because of a stomach virus.

Lakers 104, Timberwolves 99

MINNEAPOLIS -- Shaquille O'Neal had 34 points and 11 rebounds as the Lakers used a 17-4 fourth-quarter run down Minnesota and complete a 4-0 road trip without Kobe Bryant.

The Lakers stayed one game back of Sacramento in the Pacific Division and snapped the Timberwolves' three-game winning streak. Minnesota still needs two wins or Houston losses to clinch its fifth straight playoff berth.

SuperSonics 101, Bucks 88

SEATTLE -- Gary Payton had 26 points and 15 assists Sunday night as the Seattle SuperSonics staved off playoff elimination with a 101-88 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks, who are seeking to wrap up their first division title in 15 years under former Sonics coach George Karl, were led by Ray Allen's 20 points.

Seattle led by 27 points late in the third quarter, but the Bucks rallied with a 17-0 run to cut their deficit to 79-69 with 2:15 gone in the final quarter. The Sonics then put the game away with an 11-4 run with Payton scoring two baskets.

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