Shaquille O'Neal and David Robinson, early season favorites for league MVP, have been tearing up opposing defenses all season.

While O'Neal has led the Orlando Magic to the best record in the NBA, the return of Dennis Rodman to the Spurs has helped Robinson spur San Antonio to a five-game winning streak.The big difference between the two? Free-throw shooting.

Robinson can hit his, O'Neal can't.

"I'm trying my hardest, but I can't have everything," O'Neal said. "I can't have the looks, the rapping ability and the scoring ability - AND shoot the free throws. But I'm going to hit 'em one day."

O'Neal, the NBA's leading scorer, had 32 points and 10 rebounds Wednesday night in the Magic's 102-91 win over the Los Angeles Clippers. But he missed 11 of 15 free throws and is 34-for-88 in his last seven games.

Robinson, who had 34 points and seven rebounds as the Spurs beat Denver 111-97, was 16-for-18 from the line. He's shooting 79 percent for the season.

Nets 117, Pistons 99

Thanks to Armon Gilliam, New Jersey is surviving without Derrick Coleman.

Gilliam, who took his place in the starting lineup after the Nets forward injured his hand, scored a season-high 27 points as the Nets beat Detroit.

Chris Morris also added a season-high 22 points, Benoit Benjamin had 18 and Kenny Anderson added a season-high 17 assists as the host Nets won three in a row for the first time this season.

Heat 122, Bucks 112 (2OT)

Bimbo Coles missed two potential game-winning shot, but made up for it in the second overtime as Miami defeated Milwaukee.

Coles, who missed shots at the buzzer at the end of regulation and again in the first overtime, scored 10 of his 22 points in the second overtime.

Glen Rice scored 30 points, while Kevin Willis had 29 and a season-high 24 rebounds.

Pacers 107, Bulls 99

Rik Smits scored 25 points as Indiana held Chicago under 100 points for the fifth straight game.

Chicago, which had won eight straight in Market Square Arena, was led by B.J. Armstrong with 27 points. Scottie Pippen was sidelined with stomach flu.

Spurs 111, Nuggets 97

With a win at Denver, San Antonio won its fifth straight, all by double-figure margins.

View Comments

Vinny Del Negro added 20 points and Avery Johnson 19 for the Spurs.

Magic 102, Clippers 91

O'Neal scored 12 points in the fourth quarter as Orlando finished a 3-1 road trip by beating the Clippers.

Nick Anderson added 19 points for the Magic, including five 3-pointers, while Horace Grant had 17 points and 13 rebounds.

Join the Conversation
Looking for comments?
Find comments in their new home! Click the buttons at the top or within the article to view them — or use the button below for quick access.