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NBA ROUNDUP

Pistons stung by Knicks

Jamal Crawford scored 15 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, including the tiebreaking jumper with 2.2 seconds left, and the lowly Knicks rallied to beat the Detroit Pistons, 105-103, last night in New York.

Eddy Curry added 16 points and 11 rebounds and Steve Francis scored 15 points for the Knicks, who wore green for the first time ever to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. They looked nothing like the team that has one of the NBA's worst records in Larry Brown's first season as coach after two seasons with the Pistons.

Chauncey Billups scored 24 points for the Pistons, who lost All-Stars Rasheed Wallace and Richard Hamilton to ejections in the third quarter. Detroit's magic number to clinch the Central Division title remained at two.

Before the game, Brown compared the matchup to a No. 1 seed against a 16, and it sure looked that way when the Pistons built a 16-point lead in the first half.

But New York (19-45) quickly erased that deficit in the third quarter, then got huge plays down the stretch from Crawford to beat Detroit (51-13) for the first time in three meetings this season.

Spurs 108, Suns 102 -- Nazr Mohammed matched a career high with 30 points and had 16 rebounds to lead host San Antonio, which has won three straight and remained a half-game behind Dallas in the chase for the top record in the Southwest Division and the Western Conference.

Pacers 98, Kings 93 -- Ron Artest was booed loudly and shot poorly in his return to Indiana as the Pacers beat Sacramento. Artest was playing in Indianapolis for the first time since his trade request was granted and he was sent to the Kings for Peja Stojakovic seven weeks ago. Artest scored 18 points, but shot 6 for 22 from the field, including 2 for 14 in the second half.

He was booed during pregame introductions and that continued every time he touched the ball.

Cavaliers 99, Trail Blazers 84 -- LeBron James scored 27 points and Drew Gooden added a season-high 23 points and 14 rebounds as Cleveland snapped a three-game losing streak and handed Portland its ninth consecutive road loss. The Trail Blazers have lost three in a row and 17 of their past 20 overall.

Nets 92, Lakers 89 -- Nenad Krstic scored 26 points and tapped in a missed shot by Vince Carter with 13 seconds left to lift host New Jersey. Smush Parker had brought the Lakers to 90-89 on a 3-pointer with 34 seconds left. Carter drove the lane and missed, but Krstic scored on the rebound to give the Nets a 3-point lead. Kobe Bryant missed a long 3-pointer at the buzzer.

Clippers 99, 76ers 89 -- Elton Brand had 24 points and 10 rebounds, Cuttino Mobley had 20 points against his hometown team, and host Los Angeles coasted over Philadelphia, which played without Allen Iverson (sprained ankle) for the third straight game. With their 38th win, the Clippers surpassed their total from last season.

Mavericks 104, Wizards 94 -- Jason Terry and Dirk Nowitzki scored 25 points apiece, and visiting Dallas pulled away in the second half.

Jerry Stackhouse, booed every time he touched the ball by Wizards fans disenchanted with his two seasons in Washington, added 17 points off the bench for the Mavericks, who remained ahead of San Antonio for the best record in the Western Conference.

Raptors 97, Bucks 96 -- Chris Bosh had 27 points and 10 rebounds, and host Toronto rallied from a 16-point deficit in the final six minutes to beat Milwaukee.

Grizzlies 116, Nuggets 102 -- Mike Miller matched a franchise record with 41 points to carry host Memphis. Miller, who set a franchise record for points from a reserve, connected on 12 of his first 15 shots and was 15 of 24 for the game.

Jazz 111, Hawks 101 -- Visiting Utah beat Atlanta for the seventh straight time and stayed close in the Western Conference playoff race. Deron Williams scored 28 points and two teammates scored more than 20 as Utah snapped a three-game losing streak.

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