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Francis era begins with a loss

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Steve Francis, right, looks on during his debut with the New York Knicks Friday at Madison Square Garden.

Steve Francis, right, looks on during his debut with the New York Knicks Friday at Madison Square Garden.

Frank Franklin Ii, Associated Press

The Steve Francis era got off to a slow start in New York.

The Knicks allowed the first 10 points, trailed the rest of the way, and were frequently booed during the second half of a 94-90 loss to the New Jersey Nets on Friday night in New York.

"We had a bad beginning and a horrible third quarter," Knicks coach Larry Brown said.

Francis, acquired from the Orlando Magic on Wednesday for Penny Hardaway and Trevor Ariza, was received warmly by the crowd at Madison Square Garden when announced in pregame introductions. He started in the backcourt alongside Stephon Marbury and admitted he was nervous before the game.

"I haven't been able to practice," Francis said. "I felt like a new player who was basically thrown into the game with little experience."

There was little to cheer for Knicks fans once the game started. By the time Francis made New York's first field goal 4:34 into the game, New Jersey was ahead 10-0. Channing Frye had a two-handed dunk on the next possession off a pass from Francis, but the Nets then scored 10 straight points to take a 20-4 lead.

HAWKS 117, PACERS 112 (OT): At Indianapolis, Joe Johnson matched his career high with 40 points, including a 3-pointer that sent the game into overtime.

WIZARDS 102, CAVALIERS 94: At Cleveland, Gilbert Arenas scored 26 points, and Washington shut down LeBron James in the second half. James finished with 25 points, but went 0-for-8 from the field in the second half.

MAGIC 102, SUPERSONICS 89: At Orlando, Fla., Dwight Howard had 23 points and 16 rebounds against a Seattle team with only seven available players.

NUGGETS 102, TIMBERWOLVES 101 (OT): At Minneapolis, Carmelo Anthony scored 30 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer in overtime.

SPURS 83, GRIZZLIES 80: At Memphis, Tenn., Tim Duncan scored 19 points and grabbed 16 rebounds, and San Antonio withstood Memphis' furious last-minute comeback attempt.

ROCKETS 91, WARRIORS 88: At Houston, Yao Ming and Juwan Howard each scored 22 points, and Houston beat Golden State for its first victory this season without Tracy McGrady. Jason Richardson scored a season-high 39 points for the Warriors.

PISTONS 95, BULLS 87: At Chicago, Chauncey Billups scored 17 points and Antonio McDyess tied a season high with 16 to lift Detroit in a game that featured seven technical fouls.

76ERS 116, BUCKS 111: At Milwaukee, Kyle Korver scored a career-high 31 points and Allen Iverson added 30, passing Julius Erving on the NBA's career scoring list.

CELTICS 102, TRAIL BLAZERS 96: At Portland, Ore., Paul Pierce scored 37 points, Wally Szczerbiak added 25, and Boston beat short-handed Portland. Ryan Gomes added 13 points and a season-high 17 rebounds for the Celtics. Rookie Martell Webster had 17 of his season-high 24 in the first half to lead the Blazers.