Last updated: March 15. 2013 4:24PM - 140 Views
The Associated Press



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NEW YORK — Joe Johnson scored 19 points and MarShon Brooks added 17 points off the bench Friday night, leading the Brooklyn Nets to its fifth straight victory, 99-79 over the struggling Phoenix Suns.


The Nets have won three straight games by 20 or more points for the first time in the team's NBA history.


Deron Williams added 14 points and Andray Blatche chipped in 15 points and eight rebounds as the Nets ended a five game home losing streak against Phoenix.


Jared Dudley led the Suns with 18 points and Shannon Brown had 15 off the bench as Phoenix lost its fifth straight and for the 11th time in 12 games.


Celtics 103, Rockets 91

BOSTON — Paul Pierce scored 16 of his 23 points in the second half and Kevin Garnett added 17 points and four blocks as the Boston Celtics nearly blew a 17-point lead before pulling away late in a victory over the Houston Rockets.


The Celtics extended their season-high winning streak to five games, but only after surviving a 12-0 run that pulled the Rockets within two points midway through the fourth quarter.


Rajon Rondo finished with 12 points and eight assists for the Celtics. Courtney Lee and Jared Sullinger scored 14 apiece and Sullinger also had 11 rebounds for his second straight double-double.


James Harden scored 24 and Chandler Parsons added 18 for Houston, which fell to 0-2 during a three-game road trip that concludes Saturday in Philadelphia.


Raptors 99, Bobcats 78

TORONTO — Alan Anderson scored 16 points against his former team, Jose Calderon had 15 and the Toronto Raptors won for the 10th time in 13 games, beating the Charlotte Bobcats.


Amir Johnson had 13 points and eight rebounds while Ed Davis had 12 points and eight boards for the Raptors, who led by as many as 24.


Anderson had four of Toronto's 12 3-pointers, while Calderon and Kyle Lowry each made three.


Toronto has not trailed in each of its past three victories, including home wins over Portland on Jan. 2 and Philadelphia on Jan. 9.


Starting for the second straight game, Toronto's Landry Fields matched his season high with 11 rebounds.


Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kemba Walker and Ben Gordon each scored 12 points as Charlotte's modest streak of two straight road victories came to an end.


Hawks 103, Jazz 95

ATLANTA — Devin Harris scored a season-high 24 points and the Atlanta Hawks rallied from a second-half deficit of 15 points to beat the Utah Jazz.


Randy Foye had 25 points to lead Utah, which had won four of five but was denied its first back-to-back road wins of the season. Al Jefferson had 23 points and 10 rebounds and Paul Milsap had 20 points and 13 rebounds for the Jazz.


The Hawks, who trailed 75-60 in the third quarter, played from behind before taking their first lead of the second half on consecutive baskets by Al Horford. The second basket by Horford, set up by Josh Smith's pass, gave Atlanta a 94-92 lead with 2:44 remaining.


Jefferson answered with a tying basket before Ivan Johnson scored on a fast break to give the lead back to Atlanta.


Utah's Jamaal Tinsley made one of two free throws to leave the Hawks' lead at 96-95. Josh Smith's short jumper and Lou Williams' 3-pointer padded the lead.


Hornets 104, Timberwolves 92

NEW ORLEANS — Greivis Vasquez had 18 points and 13 assists to lead the New Orleans Hornets to a 104-92 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves for their fourth straight win.


Eric Gordon added 16 points, Ryan Anderson had 15, Jason Smith 14, Al-Farouz Aminu 12 and Roger Mason 10 for the Hornets, who have won five out of six with Gordon in the starting lineup.


Luke Ridnour scored 20 points to lead a balanced Timberwolves offense. Nikola Pekovic added 18 points, Andrei Kirilenko 17, Dante Cunningham 12 and Alexey Shved 11.


New Orleans trailed 29-14 after the first quarter but outscored Minnesota 56-32 over the next two periods to take a 70-61 lead.


The Hornets hit the century mark for the first time since 113-102 loss to Minnesota on Dec. 14.


Bulls 108, Knicks 101

NEW YORK — Luol Deng scored a season-high 33 points in the Chicago Bulls' third victory over New York this season, a win that sent the Knicks to their season-high third straight loss.


Topping the 29 points he scored here last month, Deng shot 13 of 18 from the field and also led the defensive effort that contained Carmelo Anthony in the decisive first half of his return from a one-game suspension.


Carlos Boozer added 17 points for the Bulls, whose offense won't be at full strength until Derrick Rose is back from knee surgery, yet they still shot 57 percent.


Anthony ended up with 39 points for the Knicks, who were roughed up again a night after losing in Indiana.


Grizzlies 101, Spurs 98

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Rudy Gay hit a pullup jumper from 14 feet with 27.8 seconds left, and the Memphis Grizzlies held off the San Antonio Spurs in overtime for their fourth straight victory and their first over their Southwest Division rival since the 2011 playoffs.


San Antonio had won five straight in the series since the Grizzlies upset the then-No. 1 seed in the opening round in 2011. The Spurs also had a 2 1/2 -game divisional lead on Memphis coming into this game despite Memphis having played five fewer games, and the teams played at postseason intensity despite the calendar.

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