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Portland posts 9th win; Nets nip Knicks

SHARE Portland posts 9th win; Nets nip Knicks

The Blazers are blazing.

Portland extended its league-best winning streak to nine games with a 106-94 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday night."We have a lot of confidence right now," said Blazers guard Kenny Anderson. "Our team trusts in each other. We're just flowing."

Clifford Robinson scored 26 points for the Blazers, including 3-for-6 on 3-pointers. Overall, Portland was 8-for-14 from long range.

"Cliff's been on fire," Anderson said. "We got a lot of low-post players, so they kick it out and we're stroking it."

Reserve Lamond Murray had 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Clippers, who trailed by 27 points in the third quarter before staging a late rally.

"That is too good a team not to play well against," Clippers coach Bill Fitch said. "When they have won eight in a row, you've got to put a game out there. Every combination we put out there was lacking something."

Nets 89, Knicks 74

At New York, Sam Cassell had 23 points and a season-high 10 rebounds as New Jersey won its second straight over an Eastern power. Kendall Gill added 17 points for the Nets, who were coming off a stunning victory over the Chicago Bulls. Larry Johnson scored 21 points for the Knicks.

Heat 101, Rockets 80

At Miami, Tim Hardaway had 31 points and nine assists as the Heat moved back into first place in the Atlantic Division. Isaac Austin had 18 points and nine rebounds for Miami, which has won three straight to improve to 7-4 since center Alonzo Mourning was injured. Hakeem Olajuwon led Houston with 20 points.

Bucks 102, Pacers 98

At Milwaukee, Glenn Robinson scored 11 of his 30 points in the final period. Armon Gilliam and Vin Baker added 18 apiece for the Bucks, who won for only the second time in their last 12 games. Rik Smits led Indiana with 24 points.

Magic 100, Grizzlies 89

At Orlando, Gerald Wilkins scored 17 points as the Magic handed Vancouver its 13th straight loss. The Magic won for the 12th time in 15 games under coach Richie Adubato. Shareef Abdur-Rahim led Vancouver with 22 points.

Timberwolves 119, Celtics 101

At Minneapolis, Boston clinched its worst winning percentage since 1950. With a record of 12-54, the best the Celtics can finish is 28-54 for a .341 victory percentage. Kevin Garnett led Minnesota with 26 points, while rookie Antoine Walker paced the Celtics with 29.

Pistons 86, Sonics 83

At Auburn Hills, Terry Mills scored 20 of his 25 points in the first half as the Pistons won their 47th game, one more than they won all last year. Joe Dumars added 21 points for Detroit, including a pair of key 3-pointers in the fourth quarter. Hersey Hawkins led Seattle with 18 points.

Mavericks 89, Kings 88

At Sacramento, Shawn Bradley scored Dallas' final eight points, including a short jumper with 4.5 seconds left. Mammoud Abdul-Rauf missed a 3-point attempt with two seconds left for Sacramento, which lost its fifth straight.

Lakers 98, Raptors 90, OT

At Inglewood, Nick Van Exel hit a 3-pointer with 2:58 left in overtime to put the Lakers ahead for good. Van Exel's shot, only his third field goal in 11 tries, gave the Lakers a 92-89 lead and they went on to win for just the sixth time in 14 games. Eddie Jones scored 27 for the Lakers, while Damon Stoudamire led Toronto with 25.