Penny Hardaway showed no rust in his first game in more than three weeks, making a key jumper with 36 seconds remaining to lead New York over shorthanded Cleveland at Madison Square Garden. Hardaway, activated from the injured list prior to the game, scored 12 points and was on the court for most of the fourth quarter as the Knicks held off the Cavs -- who were without LeBron James -- and snapped a seven-game losing streak.
Without their main weapon, the Cavs were forced to go to Zydrunas Ilgauskas for their biggest shot of the game -- a 20-foot jumper that missed with 2 seconds remaining.
Hardaway grabbed the rebound, and Jamison Brewer made two free throws for the final margin as New York won for the first time since Jan. 9.
Stephon Marbury and Jamal Crawford scored 22 points each, and Nazr Mohammed had 21 points and 10 rebounds for the Knicks.
Hornets 99, 76ers 95 -- P.J. Brown scored 6 of his season-high 20 points in overtime and grabbed 10 rebounds, sending host New Orleans over Philadelphia. Dan Dickau had 19 points and a career-high 16 assists, setting up two key mid-range jumpers by Brown in overtime. Brown also hit a pair of free throws in the final minute to seal the Hornets' fourth victory in five home games.
Corliss Williamson led Philadelphia with 20 points, playing 39 minutes after Kenny Thomas hurt his nose late in the second quarter.
The game had a wild finish to the fourth quarter after J.R. Smith's 3-pointer gave New Orleans an 82-76 lead with 2:37 to go.
Heat 106, Hawks 96 -- Shaquille O'Neal scored 26 points and actually made more free throws than he missed, leading visiting Miami. Shandon Anderson, taking the place of an ailing Eddie Jones, added 21 points for the Heat, who lead the Eastern Conference with a 32-13 record -- including 16-8 on the road.
The hapless Hawks, the worst team in the East, lost for the fifth time in six games. Home or away, it doesn't really matter for Atlanta, which dropped to 6-17 at Phillips Arena.
Antoine Walker matched his season high for the Hawks with 36 points, going 6 of 8 from beyond the 3-point arc. He also made a run at a triple-double, pulling down 10 rebounds and doling out eight assists.
Nuggets 106, Bucks 100 -- George Karl made a triumphant return to the NBA at the expense of his former team, directing Denver at Milwaukee. Out of the NBA since the Bucks fired him in 2003, Karl took over the Nuggets Thursday. Denver fired Jeff Bzdelik Dec. 28, and Michael Cooper coached the team on an interim basis before Karl's hiring.
Carmelo Anthony scored 25 points for Denver, which overcame a 14-point deficit to snap a three-game losing streak.
Timberwolves 93, Jazz 91 -- Kevin Garnett scored 25 points and made a key steal in the final minute to help host Minnesota rally for their its straight victory. After trailing for much of the game, the Wolves came alive late in the third quarter to erase a 16-point deficit. Eddie Griffin's follow-up dunk off Wally Szczerbiak's miss with 1:48 to go gave Minnesota the lead for good at 87-85.
Both teams failed on their next two possessions, and the Jazz were going for the tying basket when Garnett stole Raul Lopez's outlet pass. Garnett fed a breaking Sam Cassell for a layup to put the Wolves up by four.
Magic 108, Wizards 101 -- Hedo Turkoglu matched his career high with 31 points -- 17 in the second quarter -- and Orlando snapped visiting Washington's four-game winning streak. Steve Francis missed his first 11 shots, but his jumper with 44.2 seconds left broke a 100-all tie. Francis finished with 10 points, 9 assists, and 7 rebounds.
After Gilbert Arenas missed a layup, Dwight Howard grabbed the rebound and Francis made two free throws with 16.6 left to seal the win. Howard had 12 points and 11 rebounds for his 12th double-double.
Bobcats 101, Raptors 94 -- Kareem Rush scored 21 points and host Charlotte finally figured out how to make foul shots in time to snap a 10-game losing streak. Awful at the line during its skid, Charlotte made 17 of 19 attempts in winning for the first time since Jan. 5 against Minnesota.