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Celtics unload interior depth

Boston traded starting center Kendrick Perkins, and Hasheem Thabeet, Nenad Krstic, Joel Przybilla and Nazr Mohammed were some other men in the middle who were dealt Thursday before the trade deadline.

The Clippers' Baron Davis and the Bobcats' Gerald Wallace were among the former All-Stars who moved on a busy day.

The Celtics traded Perkins, their starting center who had recently returned from a knee injury sustained in Game 6 of last year's NBA Finals, along with Nate Robinson to Oklahoma City for Jeff Green, Krstic, a future first-round draft pick and cash.

"He's a team-first guy, plays great low-post defense," Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau, a former Boston assistant, said of Perkins. "There may not be a better low-post defender."

Boston also dealt backup big man Semih Erden and reserve swingman Marquis Daniels.

The Celtics get back Green, the power forward they drafted at No. 5 in 2007 but traded to Seattle for Ray Allen. With Perkins gone and Shaquille O'Neal and Jermaine O'Neal battling injuries most of the season, interior defense is now a question mark for a team that appeared to have loaded up on it before the season.

Wallace was an All-Star last season but is owed about $21 million over the next two years, so the cost-cutting Bobcats had been shopping him. He'll try to help the Trail Blazers reach the postseason.

"He is just the sort of talent we were looking for," Blazers owner Paul Allen said.

Davis and an unprotected 2011 first-round draft pick went from the Clippers to Cleveland for Mo Williams and forward Jamario Moon. Davis and Cavs coach Byron Scott clashed when they were in New Orleans. Scott said the point guard apologized for his past behavior before a preseason game.

Aaron Brooks was dealt from Houston to Phoenix for Goran Dragic and a first-round pick. He will back up Steve Nash.

Around the league: Mavs owner Mark Cuban is unhappy with a Kings-Hornets trade because it increases the payroll of the Hornets, whom the league purchased this season in a $300 million bailout move. Sacramento forward Carl Landry went to New Orleans for guard Marcus Thornton and cash. Landry's $3 million salary is about $2.25 million more than Thornton's. With the owners funding the Hornets, Cuban said, "I don't need to be competing economically with the league and myself."

Bulls topple Heat: Derrick Rose scored 26 and Luol Deng added 20, including the tiebreaking 3 with 16 seconds left, and the host Bulls beat the Heat 93-89. Dwyane Wade scored 34 and LeBron James 29 for Miami, but Chris Bosh missed 17 of 18 shots and had seven points with mostly Joakim Noah guarding him.

Bulls 93, Heat 89

MIAMI (89): James 12-21 5-6 29, Bosh 1-18 5-6 7, Dampier 2-2 1-1 5, Chalmers 4-6 2-2 12, Wade 12-24 10-12 34, Jones 0-3 0-0 0, House 1-5 0-0 2, Anthony 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 32-79 23-27 89.

CHICAGO (93): Deng 7-12 5-5 20, Boozer 7-12 2-2 16, Noah 3-6 1-2 7, Rose 9-24 7-8 26, Bogans 0-4 2-2 2, Gibson 2-8 1-2 5, Brewer 4-6 0-0 8, Asik 0-0 0-0 0, Watson 0-3 2-2 2, Korver 2-7 1-2 7. Totals 34-82 21-25 93.

Miami 31 22 14 22— 89

Chicago 23 21 27 22— 93

3-Point GoalsMiami 2-12 (Chalmers 2-2, Wade 0-1, House 0-2, Jones 0-3, James 0-4), Chi. 4-21 (Korver 2-6, Deng 1-4, Rose 1-5, Watson 0-2, Bogans 0-4). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsMiami 47 (James 10), Chi. 56 (Asik 11). AssistsMiami 12 (James 5), Chi. 17 (Rose 6). Total FoulsMiami 23, Chi. 27. TechnicalsWade, Miami three second. A23,024.

Celtics unload interior depth 02/24/11 [Last modified: Friday, February 25, 2011 12:14am]
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