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KNICKS 102, HEAT 90
MIAMI (AP) — Carmelo Anthony tied his career high with 50 points and the New York Knicks won their ninth straight game, topping the injury-depleted Miami Heat 102-90 on Wednesday night.
Anthony finished 18 of 26 from the field, reaching 50 on a jumper with 16.9 seconds remaining. J.R. Smith scored 14 and Raymond Felton added 10 for New York.
Chris Bosh scored 23 points for Miami, which played without LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Mario Chalmers, all held out with injuries not believed to be serious.
Mike Miller scored 18, Ray Allen finished with 16 and Norris Cole had 14 for the Heat, whose 17-game home winning streak was snapped.
The Knicks beat the Heat in three of their four regular-season matchups. They likely would not meet again before the Eastern Conference finals.
Miami’s magic number for clinching home-court throughout the NBA playoffs remained at five, and the Heat already have the No. 1 spot in the Eastern Conference wrapped up. The Knicks now lead Brooklyn by five games in the race for the Atlantic Division title.
LAKERS 101, MAVERICKS 81
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kobe Bryant had 23 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists in his 19th career triple-double, and Los Angeles beat Dallas in a key game for two teams struggling to get into the Western Conference playoff picture.
Dwight Howard had 24 points and 12 rebounds while hitting seven fourth-quarter free throws for the Lakers (39-36), who had lost four of six.
With former coach Phil Jackson in attendance for Shaquille O’Neal’s jersey retirement, the Lakers moved back into an eighth-place tie in the West with the Utah Jazz (39-36), who hold the tiebreaker edge on the Lakers.
Chris Kaman had 14 points for Dallas (36-38), which has a game in hand on the Lakers and Jazz.
WIZARDS 90, BULLS 86
WASHINGTON (AP) — John Wall had 27 points, nine assists and eight rebounds, Emeka Okafor scored the go-ahead dunk in the final minute and Washington beat Chicago for its eighth straight home win.
Wall was 8 for 17 from the field and 11 for 13 at the free throw line as the Wizards maintained pursuit of their goal of becoming the best team not to make the playoffs. They want to pass the Philadelphia 76ers and finish ninth in the Eastern Conference — not bad for a team that started 4-28 — and the win left them 2½ games back with eight to play.
Carlos Boozer had 19 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Bulls, who fell two games behind the fourth-place Brooklyn Nets in the Eastern Conference. Chicago visits Brooklyn on Thursday.
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