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Cavs extend winning streak to 12

LEBRON James scored 24 points with 12 assists as the Cleveland Cavaliers made more history with a 102-74 win over the Dallas Mavericks yesterday, extending their winning streak to a franchise record 12 straight.

The Cavs, who earlier this week surpassed the club mark for wins in a season, trailed 35-20 in the first quarter and 49-47 at halftime. But Cleveland outscored Dallas 30-11 in the third quarter and 55-25 in the second half to improve to a league-best 35-1 at home.

Cleveland is the 61st team to win 60 games in the regular season.

Dirk Nowitzki scored 20 for the Mavericks.

Celtics 103, Thunder 84

At Boston, Paul Pierce had 27 points and Eddie House scored 14 of his 16 in the second half to lead the Celtics.

Glen "Big Baby" Davis had 19 points and 10 rebounds and reserve Mikki Moore scored 12 with 11 boards for Boston. Rajon Rondo had 12 assists to help the Celtics win for the sixth time in seven games despite missing All-Star forward Kevin Garnett, who sat out for 15th time in 19 games to rest a strained right knee.

Russell Westbrook scored 23 points and Kevin Durant added 21 for the Thunder, which lost their third straight and fifth of six.

Hawks 86, Lakers 76

At Atlanta, Mike Bibby scored 21 points - including an improbable 3 off the top of the backboard - and the Hawks took advantage of a tough outing for Kobe Bryant, knocking the Lakers another game behind Cleveland in the race for the NBA's best overall record.

The Lakers had won five straight, locking up the top seed in the Western Conference, but an ailing Bryant had just 17 points on 7-of-19 shooting against Atlanta.

Pau Gasol was the only other Los Angeles player in double figures, leading with 21 points, as the Lakers made just 35 percent (28-of-80) from the field.

Zaza Pachulia had 11 points and 13 rebounds, leading a strong effort by the thin Hawks bench. The reserves combined for 29 points and 15 rebounds.

Hornets 90, Spurs 86

At New Orleans, Chris Paul scored 26 points, hitting three clutch free throws with 7.1 seconds left to lead the depleted Hornets.

David West had 23 points, going 11-of-11 on free throws, and grabbed 16 rebounds. The Hornets were 32-of-33 from the foul line overall, making their last 31, to compensate for 37.5 percent shooting.

Tony Parker had 20 points for San Antonio. Tim Duncan had 19 points and 15 rebounds and Manu Ginobili added 17 points.

The Hornets came into the game missing three key players because of injuries to center Tyson Chandler (left ankle) and Peja Stojakovic (back) and the one-game suspension of primary reserve James Posey, who was punished for throwing a ball at the feet of a referee during a loss in New York on Friday night.

Raptors 134, Bulls 129, OT

At Toronto, Chris Bosh had 31 points and 15 rebounds and Andrea Bargnani scored 28 points for the Raptors, who extended their winning streak to a season-high four games.

Jose Calderon had 22 points and a career-high 19 assists, Shawn Marion scored 16 points and Pops Mensah-Bonsu added 13 for Toronto.

Ben Gordon scored 37 points and Derrick Rose had 23 as Chicago failed to record its first five-game winning streak since Dec. 11-19, 2006.

Timberwolves 108, Nets 99

At Minneapolis, Mike Miller had 22 points, 10 rebounds and five assists to help Minnesota snap a seven-game losing skid.

Ryan Gomes scored 21 and Kevin Love added 16 points and 11 boards for the Timberwolves, who had lost 18 of their last 20 games.

Vince Carter had 36 points and eight rebounds for the Nets, who have lost four in a row.

Pistons 101, 76ers 97

At Auburn Hills, Michigan, Tayshaun Prince scored 21 points, Rodney Stuckey added 16 points and Allen Iverson returned from a back injury to help Detroit gain ground in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

Iverson, who missed 16 games, scored eight points in 22 minutes as Detroit pulled within 1? games of Philadelphia for sixth place in the conference.

Philadelphia's Samuel Dalembert left in the first quarter with a leg injury and didn't return.

Richard Hamilton had 14 points and seven assists for the Pistons.

Pacers 124, Wizards 115

At Indianapolis, Danny Granger scored 31 points and rookie Brandon Rush contributed 29 points and 10 rebounds for the Pacers.

Starting his third straight game, Rush matched the career-high 29 points he had at Chicago on Saturday night. He had 10 points during the first seven minutes of the third quarter, when Indiana widened a 59-52 halftime lead to 84-66.

Jarrett Jack added 19 points for the Pacers. Washington was led by Caron Butler with 31 points and 13 rebounds and Antawn Jamison with 29 points. Javaris Crittenton added a season-high 19 points for the Wizards.

Kings 126, Suns 118

At Sacramento, California, Jason Thompson had 21 points and Spencer Hawes added a career-high 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Kings.

Steve Nash scored 31 points for Phoenix, which went 0-3 on its road trip and trails Dallas by four games for the eighth and final spot it the Western Conference playoff race. The Suns have eight games remaining, including four of their final six on the road.

Andres Nocioni and Francisco Garcia each had 19 points for the Kings, who had lost seven of their eight previous games. Kevin Martin scored 17 and Beno Udrih added 16 points and seven assists.

Shaquille O'Neal had 24 points and nine rebounds, and Grant Hill 19 points for Phoenix.


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