BOSTON (AP) -Point guard Rajon Rondo had a season-high 12 rebounds, following one of them with a putback layup with 42 seconds left to give the Celtics the lead, and Boston held on to beat the Dallas Mavericks 96-90 on Thursday night.
Playing without Kevin Garnett for the third straight game, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen scored 26 points apiece to help the Celtics remain unbeaten against the Western Conference. And they did it against one of the West's best teams while overcoming 31 points and 11 rebounds from Dirk Nowitzki.
The Celtics had lost two of their last four and five of their last 11 since opening the season 29-3 to earn Doc Rivers the honor of coaching the Eastern Conference at the Feb. 17 All-Star game in New Orleans. Dallas' loss deprived Mavericks coach Avery Johnson of the chance to coach the West, which instead went to the Hornets' Byron Scott.
Pistons 90, Lakers 89
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) - Tayshaun Prince's 3-pointer with 4.4 seconds left lifted Detroit over Los Angeles, overcoming Kobe Bryant's big night.
Bryant had 39 points and 10 rebounds, but didn't get a shot on the final possession, which ended with Lamar Odom's airball. Bryant had an unusual triple-double, adding a career-high 11 turnovers to his scoring and rebounding numbers.
The Pistons have won nine straight at home over the Lakers, including three games to win the 2004 NBA finals.
Prince led the Pistons with 22 points while All-Stars Chauncey Billups and Richard Hamilton scored 16 and 14, respectively. Rookie reserves Arron Afflalo and Rodney Stuckey added 10 apiece.
SuperSonics 101, Cavaliers 95
SEATTLE (AP) - Chris Wilcox scored Seattle's first 10 points, Kevin Durant had 12 of his 24 in the first quarter, and the SuperSonics held off a late surge to surge to beat Cleveland, which played without LeBron James.
Two nights after snapping their franchise-record, 14-game losing streak by beating the NBA champion San Antonio Spurs - without Tony Parker - the Sonics took out the Eastern Conference champ Cavs.
Of course this win isn't as impressive since James, the NBA's leading scorer at 30.1 points per game, sat on the bench in a brown blazer and jeans after he sprained his right ankle late in the second quarter of Wednesday night's win over Portland.
Larry Hughes scored 28 points and Zydrunas Ilgauskas added 17. The Cavs now return home for four of the next seven games before the All-Star Break.

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