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Knicks win eighth in row

Amar’e Stoudemire established a franchise record with his eighth straight game of 30 or more points for the Knicks, who beat the Nuggets in New York. Amar’e Stoudemire established a franchise record with his eighth straight game of 30 or more points for the Knicks, who beat the Nuggets in New York. (Seth Wenig/Associated Press)
Associated Press / December 13, 2010

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The roar at the beginning was for Carmelo Anthony. The booming chants at the end were for Amar’e Stoudemire.

Maybe the New York Knicks already have the only superstar they need.

“Sky’s the limit,’’ Stoudemire said. “It’s just a matter of us continuing to improve.’’

Stoudemire scored 24 of his 30 points in the second half, Wilson Chandler made the tiebreaking 3-pointer with 30 seconds left, and the Knicks beat the Denver Nuggets, 129-125, yesterday in New York for their first eight-game winning streak in 16 years.

Perhaps catching a break not to have been called for a second technical foul and ejected in the second quarter, Stoudemire set a franchise record with his eighth straight 30-point game. The more important streak for the Knicks is the winning one.

Victorious for the 13th time in 14 games, the Knicks have won eight straight for the first time since Dec. 27, 1994-Jan. 13, 1995.

Next up: showdowns with Boston Wednesday and Miami Friday as the Knicks try to show they can compete with the NBA’s elite.

The Knicks seemed to be going nowhere when a 120-118 loss in Denver Nov. 16 dropped them to 3-8. But they have lost just once since thanks mostly to Stoudemire, awarded with “MVP! MVP!’’ chants in the final minute.

With most of the crowd at Madison Square Garden standing and chanting for the closing minutes, Raymond Felton made four free throws in the final 15.6 seconds.

Chandler scored 27 points, and Felton had 19 points and 17 assists. Rookie Landry Fields scored 18 points and Danilo Gallinari had 16 for the Knicks.

Anthony had 31 points and 13 rebounds in his return to the lineup after missing two games with an inflamed right knee. Nene added 26 points, but the Nuggets finished 1-3 on their road trip.

The game drew extra attention because of Anthony, who reportedly wants to play in New York.

Lakers 99, Nets 92 — Kobe Bryant scored 25 of his 32 points in the second half and had two big assists in a late 8-point run that led Los Angeles to victory in Newark.

Lamar Odom had 5 of his 22 points in a late spurt and Pau Gasol had the other 3 in capping a 15-point, 11-rebound effort that guided the Lakers to their sixth straight win over New Jersey.

Spurs 95, Trail Blazers 78 — George Hill scored 22 points as host San Antonio became the NBA’s first team to 20 wins.

Manu Ginobili added 18 points to help the Spurs win their fifth in a row and stop Portland’s winning streak at four games.

Magic 94, Clippers 85 — Dwight Howard scored 22 points to help visiting Orlando snap a four-game losing streak.

Jameer Nelson added 17 points, Vince Carter 13, and Brandon Bass had 13 points and a career high-tying 11 rebounds for the Magic, who beat the Clippers for the eighth consecutive time.

Thunder 106, Cavaliers 77 — Kevin Durant scored 25 points, Jeff Green and James Harden added 19 apiece, and Oklahoma City handed visiting Cleveland its eighth straight loss.

76ers 88, Hornets 70 — Lou Williams scored 17 points, Andre Iguodala had 16 points and 10 assists, and Elton Brand had 15 points and 13 rebounds as Philadelphia pounded host New Orleans to win for the fifth time in seven games.

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