SCOREBOARD
Thursday, Dec. 27
Phoenix at L.A. Clippers (10:30 p.m. EST). The Suns have lost five of eight, while the Clippers have dropped four straight.

STARS
Wednesday
-Chris Paul, Hornets, had 40 points and nine assists to lead New Orleans to a 116-96 victory over Memphis.
-Monta Ellis, Warriors, scored a career-high 35 points in Golden State's 105-101 win against Minnesota.
-Carmelo Anthony, Nuggets, had 29 points and 10 rebounds for his fourth straight double-double as Denver beat Milwaukee 125-105.
-Andre Iguodala, 76ers, scored a season-high 28 points in Philadelphia's 96-85 victory over Miami.

FLYING HIGH
Atlanta beat the Indiana Pacers 107-95 on Wednesday night for its first five-game winning streak in eight years. The Hawks are three games over .500 this late in the season for the first time since the 1998-99 season, the last time they made the playoffs. The Hawks' last five-game winning streak came early the following season, from Nov. 27-Dec. 8 in 1999.

ON THE ROAD
Boston won its first game in Sacramento in more than 11 years, an 89-69 victory Wednesday night. It was the opener of the Celtics' first West Coast trip this season. The Celtics played just their 11th road game of the season and first against a team in the Western Conference. They have three more in the next four days of this trip, including Allen's return to Seattle on Thursday and weekend games at Utah and the Los Angeles Lakers.

STREAKING
The Detroit Pistons shot 78 percent in the third quarter in beating the New Jersey Nets 101-83 on Wednesday night for their sixth straight victory. ... Golden State beat Minnesota 105-101 for its fifth straight home victory.

ON THE REBOUND
Shaquille O'Neal had 10 rebounds in Miami's 96-85 loss to Philadelphia on Wednesday night, giving him 11,606 in his career. O'Neal is two shy of passing Patrick Ewing, who is 22nd with 11,607.

STRONG IN DEFEAT
Gerald Wallace scored 32 points in Charlotte's 108-104 loss to Washington on Wednesday night.

SIGNED
The San Antonio Spurs signed forward Marcus Williams on Wednesday The Spurs drafted the 6-foot-7 Williams, who played two years at Arizona, with the 33rd overall pick in the draft in June. Williams participated in the Spurs' training camp and was waived in late October.

SPEAKING
``They told me I was three points away and I was upset with myself because I missed some layups and free throws earlier and I said to myself, 'If I get a chance, I'm going to let it go.''' And luckily it went in.'' - Marcus Camby after helping Denver to a 125-105 victory over Milwaukee on Wednesday night. Camby hit his ninth 3-pointer of his eight-year NBA career, giving him 10 points to go with his 10 blocked shots and 11 rebounds.

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