Celtics fall to Lakers in Rondo’s return


By JIMMY GOLEN

AP Sports Writer

BOSTON — Rajon Rondo returned from a knee injury and missed a 3-pointer for Boston that could have sent the game into overtime, allowing the Los Angeles Lakers to beat the Celtics 107-104 on Friday night.

Pau Gasol had 24 points and 13 rebounds for Los Angeles, and Kendall Marshall finished 19 points and 14 assists. Ryan Kelly scored 20 points and Wesley Johnson added 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Marshall made a 3-pointer with 69 seconds left to give the Lakers the lead for good. Kelly added a pair of clinching free throws with 9.4 seconds remaining as the Lakers snapped a six-game losing streak.

Kelly Olynyk scored a career-high 25 points for Boston. Rondo, who was limited to 20 minutes in his first game since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament on Jan. 25, 2013, had eight points, four assists and two rebounds.

HEAT 101

76ERS 86

PHILADELPHIA — LeBron James had 21 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds, and the Miami Heat beat the Philadelphia 76ers 101-86 on Friday night to snap a three-game losing streak.

Chris Bosh scored 25 points, Norris Cole and Shane Battier had 13 points apiece, and the Heat avoided their first four-game losing streak since March 2011. The Heat dropped games at New York, Brooklyn and Washington, but had no trouble against the Sixers in this one.

The two-time defending NBA champion Heat led by 25 and atoned for a 114-110 loss to Philadelphia in October.

Tony Wroten led the Sixers with 13 points. Spencer Hawes had 10 points and 10 rebounds. The Sixers missed 18 of 20 3-point attempts.

Miami star Dwyane Wade, who missed the first game against the Sixers, scored eight points on his 32nd birthday.

CLIPPERS 109

KNICKS 95

NEW YORK — Blake Griffin scored 32 points, Jamal Crawford added 29 and the Clippers opened a seven-game road trip with their fifth straight victory.

DeAndre Jordan had 11 points and 16 rebounds for the Clippers, who dominated the second half to hand the Knicks their third consecutive loss.

Carmelo Anthony had 26 points and 20 rebounds for the Knicks in a disappointing start to an eight-game homestand that matches the longest in franchise history. That doesn’t guarantee any success this season, with the Knicks now 7-13 at Madison Square Garden.

Anthony shot only 4 of 23 from the field but made all 16 free throws in the first 20-20 game by a Knicks player since David Lee on April 2, 2010. J.R. Smith added 24 points off the bench.

JAZZ 110

PISTONS 89

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Trey Burke had 20 points and a career-high 12 assists in his return to Michigan, leading Utah to the victory.

Burke, who was the national player of the year at Michigan last season and led the Wolverines to the Final Four, had plenty of supporters in the crowd at the Palace. He shook off a slow start and outplayed Detroit counterpart Brandon Jennings as the Jazz built a big lead.

Enes Kanter added 18 points for Utah and Marvin Williams scored 17. Rodney Stuckey led the Pistons with 21, but Detroit looked flat for much of the game after a five-day layoff.

RAPTORS 94

TIMBERWOLVES 89

TORONTO — Kyle Lowry scored 24 points, Amir Johnson had 19 and the Raptors beat Minnesota for their 10th straight home victory over the Timberwolves.

DeMar DeRozan shook off a poor shooting performance to score 15 points and Terrence Ross had 16 as the Raptors won their sixth straight home game. It’s their longest home streak since an eight-game run from Jan. 17 to Feb. 10, 2010.

Lowry made a season-high six 3-pointers as the Raptors won for the ninth time in 11 games and posted their 18th victory in 19 meetings with Minnesota.

Kevin Love had 16 points and 12 rebounds and Kevin Martin added 18 points for the Timberwolves, who lost their third straight. Jose Barea scored 14 and Nikola Pekovic had 13.

WIZARDS 96

BULLS 93

WASHINGTON — John Wall had 23 points and 11 assists, helping the Wizards reach .500 for the third time this season.

The Wizards had six players score in double figures in their third straight victory, two of them coming against Chicago. Bradley Beal and Martell Webster had 14 points apiece.

Kirk Hinrich led Chicago with 18 points, and D.J. Augustin scored 16. The Bulls had won six of seven, and were trying to reach .500 for the first time since Nov. 27.

BOBCATS 111

MAGIC 101

ORLANDO, Fla. — Al Jefferson had 30 points and 16 rebounds for Charlotte, and Kemba Walker added 19 points and 10 assists.

The Magic dug out of an 18-point first-half hole and pulled to 78-76 early in the fourth quarter. But the Bobcats shot 16 for 20 on free throws in the final period to help secure the win.

Josh McRoberts and Gerald Henderson added 17 points apiece for Charlotte.

TRAIL BLAZERS 109

SPURS 100

SAN ANTONIO — LaMarcus Aldridge had 26 points and 13 rebounds, Wesley Matthews scored 24 points, and the Portland Trail Blazers held off San Antonio’s furious rally to beat the Spurs 109-100.

Damian Lillard had 21 points and eight assists and Mo Williams added 13 points as Portland snapped San Antonio’s six-game winning streak. Matthews shot 6 for 7 on 3-pointers.

Manu Ginobili had a season-high 29 points, and Boris Diaw and Marco Belinelli added 14 points each for the Spurs. Tim Duncan had 13 points and Tony Parker added 12, but the two combined for just eight points in the second half of a physical and testy matchup between teams vying for the best record in the Western Conference.

Portland was controlling the contest when San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich was ejected with 7:18 left in the third quarter after drawing two technical fouls during a Spurs timeout and the Trail Blazers leading 65-55.

The tirade sparked the fiery Ginobili, and jump-started the Spurs’ long-range shooting.

Ginobili scored 18 straight points to close the quarter, helping San Antonio outscore Portland 33-12 following Popovich’s ejection.

 

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