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Magic finishes Heat sweep

MIAMI — Jameer Nelson scored 21, Dwight Howard added 18 points and 16 rebounds, and the Magic held off a Miami challenge to beat the Heat 103-94 on Friday night and move closer to clinching an Eastern Conference playoff spot.

Hedo Turkoglu scored 20, including five within an 18-second span of the final minute, for the Magic, which trailed by nine late in the first half and never shook the Heat, which lost for the 34th time in 37 games.

The Magic swept the four-game series with its Sunshine State neighbors for the second straight season.

Jason Williams scored 34 — the second-highest total of his career — for Miami, which was without coach Pat Riley, who is spending a few days on the road at college tournaments scouting potential draft picks, and the now-customary seven injured players, including Shawn Marion, who sat out with a sore back.

The Magic set a club record for 3-pointers in a season when Nelson connected 60 seconds after tipoff on Orlando's first of the night and 623rd of the season. And Orlando matched a club record by winning its 23rd road game, with six still to play.

The Heat falls to 11-53, and it still needs five wins to avoid matching the franchise's all-time low.

Although Orlando's starters combined to shoot 67 percent in the third quarter, the Magic still couldn't pull away. It led 77-74 entering the fourth, and after Bobby Jones hit his third 3-pointer in three attempts with 10:52 left, the game was knotted again at 79.

The 10th tie of the night came with 8:07 left when Williams hit a jumper, giving him 28 points and matching his all-time high with the Heat. But Miami didn't score for the next two minutes, and Orlando took advantage to build a five-point cushion and again looked poised to put the game away.

Again, not quite.

Williams knifed through for a layup with 4:42 left, tying it at 90. But he rolled the ankle again one possession later, and even after referee Steve Javie asked if he was okay, Williams — who hadn't logged as many minutes in a game since November — still wouldn't come out.

But in the end, a 34-point, seven-assist, six-rebound night wasn't enough.

ORLANDO (103): Turkoglu 7-16 3-4 20, Lewis 6-13 1-2 15, Howard 6-13 6-16 18, Nelson 6-7 6-6 21, Evans 4-7 0-0 8, B.Cook 1-5 2-2 4, Bogans 1-5 2-2 5, Foyle 1-1 0-0 2, Arroyo 0-3 0-0 0, Dooling 3-4 3-4 10. Totals 35-74 23-36 103.

MIAMI (94): Davis 5-13 1-1 11, Johnson 3-5 0-0 6, Blount 3-10 3-3 9, Williams 14-26 1-1 34, D.Cook 6-12 1-1 15, Anthony 5-7 0-0 10, Jones 3-3 0-0 9, Quinn 0-6 0-0 0. Totals 39-82 6-6 94.

Orlando 25 25 27 26— 103

Miami 25 26 23 20— 94

3-Point GoalsOrlando 10-30 (Nelson 3-4, Turkoglu 3-7, Lewis 2-6, Dooling 1-2, Bogans 1-4, Arroyo 0-2, Evans 0-2, B.Cook 0-3), Miami 10-30 (Williams 5-12, Jones 3-3, D.Cook 2-6, Blount 0-2, Quinn 0-3, Davis 0-4). Fouled OutD.Cook. ReboundsOrlando 58 (Howard 16), Miami 37 (Davis, Anthony 7). AssistsOrlando 20 (Nelson 7), Miami 16 (Williams 7). Total FoulsOrlando 11, Miami 26. TechnicalsOrlando defensive three second 2. A19,312 (19,600).

Jazz 110, Celtics 92

BOSTON — Deron Williams had 32 points and eight assists, and Carlos Boozer added 17 points and 12 rebounds as the Jazz ended the Celtics' 10-game winning streak.

Boston cut a 13-point, third-quarter deficit to three points in the fourth and trailed just 93-89 with 5:25 left. But Williams led the Jazz on a 10-0 run while the Celtics missed a pair of 3-pointers, committed a pair of charging fouls and threw in a flagrant foul by Kendrick Perkins to fall to their biggest loss of the season.

Williams went 17-for-18 from the line and hit his only 3-point attempt. Boozer had his 44th double double of the season, and Mehmet Okur had 12 points and nine rebounds for the Jazz.

Kevin Garnett had 15 points, four blocks and six assists for the Celtics, who had a chance to clinch the Atlantic Division. Instead, they needed another loss by Toronto to earn a top seed in the NBA playoffs.

Boston played three-quarters of the game without Ray Allen, who jammed his left ankle and did not return.

UTAH (110): Kirilenko 3-5 1-2 8, Boozer 6-16 5-5 17, Okur 4-11 2-2 12, Williams 7-10 17-18 32, Brewer 5-8 0-0 10, Harpring 3-9 2-4 8, Millsap 4-5 0-0 8, Price 2-4 0-0 5, Korver 3-5 2-2 10, Collins 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 37-73 29-33 110.

BOSTON (92): Pierce 1-7 6-7 8, Garnett 6-12 3-8 15, Perkins 5-5 3-3 13, Rondo 6-13 0-0 12, R.Allen 1-2 6-6 9, Powe 3-3 2-2 8, Posey 3-8 4-4 11, Davis 1-2 0-0 2, House 3-8 0-0 7, T.Allen 3-6 1-4 7. Totals 32-66 25-34 92.

Utah 33 29 17 31— 110

Boston 23 26 25 18— 92

3-Point GoalsUtah 7-14 (Korver 2-3, Okur 2-5, Williams 1-1, Price 1-2, Kirilenko 1-2, Brewer 0-1), Boston 3-15 (R.Allen 1-2, House 1-2, Posey 1-6, T.Allen 0-1, Rondo 0-1, Pierce 0-3). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsUtah 48 (Boozer 12), Boston 35 (Perkins 7). AssistsUtah 20 (Williams 8), Boston 20 (Garnett 6). Total FoulsUtah 18, Boston 25. TechnicalsUtah Coach Sloan, Boston defensive three second 2. Flagrant Fouls—Perkins. A18,624 (18,624).

Hawks 117, Clippers 93

ATLANTA — Joe Johnson scored 21 of his 28 in the third quarter and Mike Bibby handed out 14 assists to help the Hawks beat the Clippers.

Josh Smith added 25 points for the Hawks, who stopped a two-game losing streak and won for just the second time in eight games.

Tim Thomas scored 18 for Los Angeles, which has dropped two straight and 10 of its past 12.

The Clippers never came within single digits of the lead after Zaza Pachulia's putback for Atlanta made it 30-19 late in the first quarter.

L.A. CLIPPERS (93): Maggette 4-11 5-6 14, Powell 3-5 3-4 9, Thomas 8-14 0-0 18, Knight 1-3 0-0 2, Mobley 5-9 0-0 10, Dickau 4-10 1-2 10, Thornton 5-12 8-11 18, Ross 1-4 0-0 2, Parker 4-8 2-3 10, Fazekas 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 35-77 19-26 93.

ATLANTA (117): M.Williams 5-13 2-2 12, Smith 10-15 5-7 25, Horford 3-5 0-0 6, Bibby 6-9 0-0 14, Johnson 10-14 1-1 28, Childress 6-9 2-3 14, Pachulia 1-5 3-4 5, Law 5-9 0-0 10, West 0-1 0-0 0, Richardson 0-4 0-0 0, Jones 1-3 1-2 3. Totals 47-87 14-19 117.

L.A. Clippers 22 26 23 22— 93

Atlanta 36 27 33 21— 117

3-Point GoalsL.A. Clippers 4-13 (Thomas 2-5, Maggette 1-1, Dickau 1-3, Parker 0-2, Thornton 0-2), Atlanta 9-13 (Johnson 7-8, Bibby 2-2, Richardson 0-3). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsL.A. Clippers 41 (Thornton, Mobley, Thomas, Fazekas 5), Atlanta 53 (Pachulia 10). AssistsL.A. Clippers 19 (Dickau 5), Atlanta 30 (Bibby 14). Total FoulsL.A. Clippers 17, Atlanta 21. TechnicalsL.A. Clippers Coach Dunleavy, Parker. A16,107 (18,729).

Hornets 108, Lakers 98

NEW ORLEANS — Chris Paul had 27 points and 17 assists to help the Hornets beat the Lakers in what could prove to be a costly game for both teams.

Paul hobbled to the finish after hurting his left ankle on a failed drive the hoop with 2:31 to go. Lakers center Pau Gasol did not make it to the final horn. He sprained his left ankle and needed help limping off the court in the first quarter. Gasol was running into the lane for a potential offensive rebound when he appeared to step on teammate Vladimir Radmanovic's foot.

L.A. LAKERS (98): Radmanovic 5-10 2-3 13, Odom 6-12 3-4 15, Gasol 0-1 0-0 0, Fisher 4-13 0-0 10, Bryant 10-23 12-13 36, Turiaf 0-7 1-2 1, Walton 3-7 0-0 6, Farmar 5-12 1-2 12, Vujacic 2-7 0-0 5. Totals 35-92 19-24 98.

NEW ORLEANS (108): Stojakovic 5-16 0-0 15, West 4-10 4-4 12, Chandler 7-9 0-2 14, Paul 9-19 7-12 27, Peterson 3-6 0-0 7, Wells 3-7 1-2 7, Ely 3-3 0-0 6, Pargo 3-8 3-4 11, Wright 4-6 0-0 9, Bowen 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 41-84 15-24 108.

L.A. Lakers 21 28 23 26— 98

New Orleans 23 23 34 28— 108

3-Point GoalsL.A. Lakers 9-30 (Bryant 4-7, Fisher 2-5, Farmar 1-4, Radmanovic 1-5, Vujacic 1-5, Walton 0-1, Odom 0-3), New Orleans 11-24 (Stojakovic 5-9, Pargo 2-5, Paul 2-5, Wright 1-1, Peterson 1-4). Fouled OutBryant. ReboundsL.A. Lakers 52 (Odom 13), New Orleans 62 (Chandler 20). AssistsL.A. Lakers 26 (Walton 7), New Orleans 28 (Paul 17). Total FoulsL.A. Lakers 22, New Orleans 21. TechnicalsTuriaf, Chandler. A18,199 (17,200).

Pistons 84, Spurs 80

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Richard Hamilton scored 25 and made an important three-point play with 20.6 seconds left, lifting the Pistons over the short-handed Spurs.

Sonics: The team and Oklahoma City have reached a preliminary agreement on a lease at the Ford Center pending NBA approval of the team's relocation. The 15-year deal would not become official unless NBA team owners approve the relocation next month and until the team can escape its lease in Seattle that runs through 2010.

Spur suspended: Bruce Bowen was suspended one game by the NBA for kicking New Orleans' Paul, ending his consecutive games streak at 500. Bowen began his streak, the longest in the NBA, on Feb. 28, 2002, and he started every game until missing the Spurs' visit to Detroit on Friday.

Pistons forward Tayshaun Prince took the league lead in starts with his 338th in a row. Bowen will lose about $37,000.

Magic 103

Heat 94

Magic finishes Heat sweep 03/14/08 [Last modified: Friday, March 14, 2008 11:52pm]

    

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