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Cavaliers edge Magic 97-93

LEBRON James made a long 3-pointer with 47.4 seconds left and added two free throws with 8.7 seconds to go as the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Orlando Magic 97-93 yesterday.

With Cleveland trailing 93-92 in a game soaked in playoff intensity, James, wearing green and white Nikes to celebrate St. Patrick's Day, pulled up in front of Orlando's bench and coldly knocked down his 3. Magic center Dwight Howard was called for a 3-second violation on Orlando's next trip, giving the ball back to Cleveland.

James was then fouled while shooting and made his two free throws as the crowd serenaded him with chants of "MVP."

Rashard Lewis missed a 3-pointer with 2.5 seconds left for the Magic, who came in with the Eastern Conference's best road record.

76ers 94, Lakers 93

At Los Angeles, Andre Iguodala scored 25 points, including a buzzer-beating 3-pointer as Philadelphia overcame a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat Los Angeles.

The Sixers were trailing 78-67 when interim coach Tony DiLeo put little-used forward Donyell Marshall into the game for the first time. The 14-year veteran drained a 3-pointer 19 seconds later, igniting a 20-2 blitz.

Still, the Lakers led 93-91 when Andre Miller inbounded to Iguodala, who was covered loosely by Ariza before connecting from the top of the key.

Hawks 119, Kings 97

At Atlanta, Al Horford had 23 points and 12 rebounds, and Josh Smith finished with 21 points and 10 rebounds as Atlanta downed Sacramento for its sixth straight victory.

The Hawks are 40 wins against 28 losses overall, their highest win total since 1997-98. They moved three games ahead of fifth-place Miami in the Eastern Conference standings.

Kevin Martin scored 31 for Sacramento, which stretched its losing streak to four games overall and on the road.

Mavericks 103, Pistons 101

At Dallas, Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks finally took advantage of an injury-depleted team, leading the Detroit Pistons from start to finish. The Mavs won their eighth straight at home.

Richard Hamilton was a late scratch for Detroit because of an aggravated groin problem. With Rasheed Wallace (calf) and Allen Iverson (back) also out, the Pistons were missing a combined average of 48.5 points per game, and were out of whack from the start.

Nowitzki scored 30 points, Jason Terry had 18 and Dampier tied his season high with 16 points, and had 13 rebounds.

Spurs 93, Timberwolves 86

At San Antonio, Tony Parker scored 24 points to once again carry San Antonio against Minnesota

Giving All-Star forward Tim Duncan the night off, the Spurs pushed their lead over Houston to two games for the No. 2 seed in the West. They did so behind Parker, who averaged 33 points in four wins over the Timberwolves this season.

Sebastian Telfair and Kevin Love had 17 points apiece for Minnesota.

Jazz 103, Wizards 88

At Salt Lake City, Deron Williams scored eight of his 12 points in the third quarter and Carlos Boozer finished with 13 points and 15 rebounds as Utah beat Washington to end a three-game losing streak.

Ronnie Brewer scored 13 despite playing only the second and fourth quarters as punishment for oversleeping and missing Tuesday morning's shootaround. Kyle Korver added 15 points on his 28th birthday as seven Utah players scored in double figures.

Nick Young and Juan Dixon had 14 points each to lead Washington.

Bulls 127, Celtics 121

At Chicago, John Salmons tied a career-high with 38 points as Chicago rallied past Boston for another surprising victory despite 37 points from Paul Pierce.

The Celtics were trying to clinch a share of the Atlantic Division.

Coming off an 86-77 loss at Milwaukee on Sunday in which they set a season low for points scored, the Celtics set one for points allowed in another disappointing loss for a team trying to lock down home-court advantage in the playoffs.

The Bulls are leading the race for the eighth playoff spot in the East by a half game over Milwaukee.

Warriors 127, Clippers 120

At Oakland, California, Monta Ellis matched his season high with 29 points and Corey Maggette had 21 as Golden State downed the Los Angeles Clippers.

Anthony Morrow added 20 points as the Warriors won their third in four games. Kelenna Azubuike had 16 and Anthony Randolph 14.

Baron Davis scored 29 points in his first game in Oakland since opting out of his contract with the Warriors. He received a warm ovation before the game. Al Thornton had 25 points and nine rebounds but the Clippers lost their straight on the road.

Zach Randolph (20 points, 11 rebounds) and Marcus Camby (14 points, 11 rebounds) each recorded a double-double for the Clippers.


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