Corey Maggette scored a career-high 39 points, Elton Brand added 32, and the Los Angeles Clippers rallied to beat the Los Angeles Lakers, 118-110, last night despite Kobe Bryant's 50 points.
Bryant's nine 50-point games this season are the most in the NBA since Wilt Chamberlain scored at least 50 nine times in the 1964-65 season.
The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Clippers (38-40), who are tied with Golden State for the eighth and final playoff berth in the Western Conference. Both trail the seventh-place Lakers by 1 1/2 games.
Maggette, whose previous career high was 38 points, also had 8 rebounds and 9 assists, and Brand, who scored 22 of his points after halftime, had 12 rebounds and 7 assists.
Clippers guard Sam Cassell returned after missing four games because of back spasms, and scored 8 of his 12 points in the fourth quarter.
Bryant shot 17 of 33 from the floor and made all 15 of his free throws. He also had nine rebounds. But he was held scoreless after making two foul shots to give the Lakers a 102-92 lead with 8:46 remaining.
The Clippers outscored the Lakers, 26-8, after that.
Cavaliers 94, Nets 76 -- LeBron James looked primed for the postseason, scoring 35 points in 36 minutes, and Cleveland secured home-court advantage for the first round of the playoffs with a win over visiting New Jersey, which blew a chance to inch closer to a berth.
Larry Hughes added 19 points for Cleveland (47-32), which tied idle Chicago (47-32) for the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference. The Cavaliers have three games left, and they'll probably have to win them all and hope the Bulls -- who own the tiebreaker between the clubs -- stumble to avoid a possible first-round matchup against the Miami Heat.
James took over in the third quarter, scoring 15 points when the Cavaliers shot 82 percent from the field and outscored New Jersey, 36-19.
Vince Carter scored 26 points to lead the Nets (37-41), who came in as the East's No. 7 seed. A victory would have reduced New Jersey's magic number for clinching a sixth straight playoff appearance to one.