National Basketball Association Game Capsules
Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) – Reggie Miller had 22 points, scoring seven
during a key 21-second span late in the fourth quarter, leading the Indiana
Pacers over the New Jersey Nets, 90-86, at Conseco Fieldhouse. Stephen
Jackson added 17 points for the Pacers, who captured a playoff spot with
the win. James Jones added 14 points and Austin Croshere had 13 points and
seven rebounds for Indiana, which has won eight of nine and remains in a
fifth-place tie with Washington in the Eastern Conference standings. Jason
Kidd had 29 points, 15 rebounds and six assists for the Nets, who had a three-
game win streak halted and fell 1 1/2 games behind the Philadelphia 76ers
for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Vince Carter ended with
22 points for New Jersey, which has only four games remaining.
Final Score: Washington 93, Chicago 82
Washington, DC (Sports Network) – Larry Hughes scored 23 points and Gilbert
Arenas chipped in 21 as the Washington Wizards clinched a playoff berth with a
93-82 win over Chicago at the MCI Center. Antawn Jamison finished with 19
points and 14 rebounds for the Wizards, who will be in the playoffs for
the first time since the 1996-97 season. Jared Jeffries contributed nine
points and 12 rebounds in the win. Ben Gordon and Kirk Hinrich had 21
points apiece to lead the way for the Bulls, who dropped their second
consecutive contest. Chris Duhon tallied 16 points in the losing effort.
Final Score: Boston 111, Milwaukee 108
Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) – Paul Pierce scored a game-high 32 points and
hit a big jumper with 19 seconds left to help Boston edge the Milwaukee Bucks,
111-108, at the Bradley Center. The victory and New Jersey’s loss in Indiana
allowed the Celtics to clinch a playoff berth. Boston also moved to 3 1/2
games ahead of idle Philadelphia for first place in the Atlantic Division.
The Celtics defeated the 76ers on Tuesday night. Antoine Walker and Ricky
Davis netted 17 points apiece for the Celtics, who have won five of their
last seven games. Walker also grabbed nine rebounds and Gary Payton finished
with 12 points and 10 assists. Michael Redd notched 28 points to lead the
Bucks, who have dropped three straight and 12 of their last 14 games. Dan
Gadzuric scored a career-high 22 points and also hauled in 12 boards, while
Desmond Mason chipped in 15 points.
Final Score: Minnesota 116, Golden State 100
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) – Kevin Garnett posted a triple-double with
21 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists as Minnesota kept its slim playoff hopes
alive with a 116-100 win over Golden State at the Target Center. Latrell
Sprewell poured in a game-high 27 points to pace Minnesota, but it was
overshadowed by Garnett’s brilliant performance. Minnesota is now three
games behind the Memphis Grizzlies, who dropped a 100-92 decision to
Houston on Wednesday, for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western
Conference. Both teams have four games remaining in the regular season.
Mickael Pietrus led Golden State with 19 points. Troy Murphy added 17 and Mike
Dunleavy dropped in 16 for the Warriors, who have dropped three straight.
Final Score: Houston 100, Memphis 92
Houston, TX (Sports Network) – Yao Ming scored a team-high 28 points as the
Houston Rockets won their fourth straight game and kept Memphis from clinching
a playoff berth with a 100-92 victory over the Grizzlies at the Toyota Center.
Yao went 10-of-16 from the field and added nine rebounds and four blocked
shots for Houston, which moved within a half game of idle Sacramento for the
fifth seed in the Western Conference playoff race. The Rockets hold a one-game
lead over seventh-place Denver, which beat New Orleans 116-102 Wednesday.
Tracy McGrady netted 23 points to go along with eight assists and eight
boards, while Mike James came off the bench to score 15 points, including a
crucial three-pointer in the final minute of play, for the Rockets. Leading
Memphis, which has lost two straight with the chance to clinch a playoff
berth, was Mike Miller with a career-high 37 points on 15-of-24
Final Score: Dallas 95, Seattle 90
Seattle, WA (Sports Network) – Dirk Nowitzki hit a clutch jumper with 17.2
seconds remaining and finished with 31 points to lead the Dallas Mavericks
over the Seattle SuperSonics, 95-90, at KeyArena. Nowitzki, who also had nine
rebounds, shot 11-of-16 from the floor, as the Mavericks have won five in a
row with four games remaining until the postseason. Jason Terry added 15
points and nine assists for Dallas, which has already wrapped up the fourth
spot in the Western Conference. Ray Allen shot just 7-of-20 from the floor and
had 19 points for the sputtering Sonics, who have dropped six in a row.
Antonio Daniels had 17 points for Seattle, which continues to search for one
more win to clinch the Northeast Division title. Denver won earlier in the
night, forcing Seattle to get a win to clinch to title and the third seed.
However, with four games remaining, the Sonics lead the Nuggets by just three
Final Score: Denver 116, New Orleans 102
Denver, CO (Sports Network) – Carmelo Anthony scored 19 points to lead seven
Denver scorers in double figures as the Nuggets cruised to a 116-102 victory
over the New Orleans Hornets at the Pepsi Center. Earl Boykins notched 18
points and 11 assists and Wesley Person netted 17 points for the Nuggets,
who have won nine straight and 23 of their last 25 games. Denver remained
one-half game behind Houston for sixth place in the Western Conference. The
Rockets defeated Memphis on Wednesday. J.R. Smith scored 25 points and
Bostjan Nachbar added 19 for the Hornets, who have dropped five straight and
six of their last seven games. Jackson Vroman posted 16 points and 10
rebounds in the loss and Maciej Lampe added 14 points and grabbed a career-
high eight boards.
Final Score: Utah 93, San Antonio 91
Salt Lake City, UT (Sports Network) – Mehmet Okur scored the go-ahead bucket
with 2.4 seconds remaining and finished with 25 points and 16 rebounds as Utah
defeated San Antonio, 93-91, at the Delta Center. Matt Harpring tallied 17
points, while Howard Eisley and Gordan Giricek finished with 15 points
apiece for the Jazz, who snapped a two-game skid. Manu Ginobili finished with
21 points for the Spurs, who saw their three-game winning streak halted and
fell 1 1/2 games behind Phoenix for first place in the Western Conference
playoff race. Tim Duncan, who returned from the injured list after missing 12
games, had 17 points and seven rebounds in 20 minutes. Tony Parker also netted
17 points in the losing effort.
Final Score: Detroit 103, Orlando 94
Auburn Hills, MI (Sports Network) – Richard Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince and
Carlos Arroyo each scored 14 points to lead six Pistons in double figures, as
Detroit won its eighth straight game with a 103-94 decision over the fading
Orlando Magic at The Palace. Antonio McDyess added 12 with eight rebounds,
Rasheed Wallace finished with 11 and Chauncey Billups had 10 with six assists
for the Central Division champion Pistons, who have won four in a row at home.
Detroit, the defending world champs, are second in the Eastern Conference.
Rookie Jameer Nelson scored a career-high 30 points for Orlando, which has
lost five straight. Dwight Howard had 17 for the Magic, who are on the verge
of being eliminated from playoff contention.
Final Score: Charlotte 105, Atlanta 84
Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) – Emeka Okafor posted a double-double with 17
points and 11 rebounds, Melvin Ely added 16 points and Charlotte pasted
Atlanta, 105-84, as the league’s two worst teams closed out a home-and-home
set from Charlotte Coliseum. Malik Allen, Gerald Wallace and Keith Bogans
each chipped in 12 points while Jason Hart and Matt Carroll each
contributed 11 points for the Bobcats, who have strung together two straight
wins — both over the Hawks. Josh Smith continues to impress, posting a
double-double with 20 points and 14 points for the struggling Hawks, who
have dropped 32 of their last 35 games. Atlanta fell to a woeful 3-36 on the
road. Tony Delk dropped in 16 points off the bench in the setback. With the
loss, Atlanta (12-66) clinched the league’s worst record, while the Bobcats
are not far behind with a 17-61 mark.