|Timberwolves end skid; Celtics drop 2nd straight|
|Written by Admin|
|Friday, 26 December 2008 22:56|
The Timberwolves snapped a 13-game losing streak with a 120-107 victory over the New York Knicks on Friday night. Minnesota had dropped its first eight games under McHale, who took over when Randy Wittman was fired Dec. 8.
``Anything worth having in life takes some faith,'' McHale said. ``And when that faith happens, it's a beautiful thing. And they've got to have faith that when they go out and play hard, good things are going to happen for them.''
Minnesota was closing in on its longest losing streak, a 16-game skid. But the Wolves put seven players in double figures, led by Rashad McCants' season-high 23 points, for McHale's first victory since he led the Wolves to a 19-12 mark after taking over when Flip Saunders was fired in the 2004-05 season.
Angeles, the Celtics blew a 14-point lead in a 99-89 loss to Golden State.
``I was worried at halftime when I saw we were shooting 56 (percent) and they were shooting 39 and it was a 12-point game,'' Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. ``I was completely concerned about it. ... Once they start making shots, it's tough to turn them off, and we couldn't make anything.''
In other NBA games Friday night, it was: Miami 90, Chicago 77; Charlotte 95, New Jersey 87; New Orleans 88, Houston 79; Detroit 90, Oklahoma City 88; Memphis 108, Indiana 105; Utah 97, Dallas 88; Denver 105, Philadelphia 101; and Toronto 107, Sacramento 101.
In Oakland, Calif., Stephen Jackson scored eight straight points during the decisive fourth-quarter stretch to finish with 28 points. Jackson scored 15 points in the final period and Marco Belinelli totaled 22 for the Warriors, who have won five straight and 12 of 15 against the Celtics at home. Golden State lost 119-111 in Boston on Nov. 26 in the teams' first meeting.
``We fired up in the fourth quarter - just the way we drew it up,'' Warriors coach Don Nelson said. ``As they go along in their journey in the NBA, they're going to have games when the other team gets hot at the wrong time and all of a sudden catches them off guard. So, it's probably no big thing to them but it's a very big thing to us.''
Heat 90, Bulls 77
At Miami, Dwyane Wade scored 28 points, Daequan Cook hit three big 3-pointers in the fourth quarter as Miami pulled away, and the Heat eclipsed last season's win total by beating the Bulls.
Mario Chalmers had 16 points and six assists while Michael Beasley - the No. 2 pick in this year's draft, after the Bulls chose Derrick Rose - scored eight of his 14 points in the fourth for Miami (16-12), which won its fourth straight.
Ben Gordon had 15 points for the Bulls, who shot just 37 percent.
Bobcats 95, Nets 87
At East Rutherford, N.J., Raymond Felton scored 22 points, Emeka Okafor added 21 and the new-look Bobcats won for the fourth time in five games with a victory over the Nets.
Boris Diaw and Felton hit clutch late baskets as the Bobcats held on after seeing a 15-point third-quarter lead dwindle to two points in the waning minutes.
Vince Carter had 19 points to lead the Nets.
Hornets 88, Rockets 79
At New Orleans, Chris Paul had 26 points and 10 assists, and the New Orleans Hornets snapped a two-game skid with a victory over the Rockets.
David West added 23 points for New Orleans, which led throughout.
ts from the field.
Pistons 90, Thunder 88
At Auburn Hills, Mich., Allen Iverson's off-balance runner with 0.2 seconds left gave the Pistons a victory over the Thunder.
Detroit has won eight straight against the Thunder, and haven't lost to them at the Palace since the then-Supersonics won 93-72 on Dec. 12, 2003.
After Iverson's jumper, Jeff Green nearly tipped in a halfcourt alley-oop, but the ball bounced twice off the rim before falling harmlessly away.
Iverson led the Pistons with 22 points. Kevin Durant had 26 points for the Thunder.
Grizzlies 108, Pacers 105
At Memphis, Tenn., O.J. Mayo scored 18 points, including two free throws with a second left, and the Grizzlies overcame an early 17-point deficit to beat the Pacers.
Memphis took the lead with seven unanswered points late in the game and held on to snap a four-game skid. The Pacers lost for the third time in their last four.
Hakim Warrick paced the Grizzlies with 21 points off the bench.
Jazz 97, Mavericks 88
At Salt Lake City, Rookie Kosta Koufos scored a career-high 18 points and Deron Williams added 17 points and 13 assists as the short-handed Jazz beat the Mavericks.
cks all game and ended Dallas' three-game winning streak.
Jason Terry led Dallas with 26 points.
Nuggets 105, 76ers 101
At Denver, Kenyon Martin took a bounce pass from Chauncey Billups and drove for the go-ahead dunk with 9 seconds left to lift the Nuggets over the 76ers.
J.R. Smith hit seven 3-pointers en route to a game-high 27 points for the Nuggets, who trailed by as many as 17 midway through the third quarter and needed a season-high 15 3s to avoid their fifth loss in six games.
Andre Iguodala led Philly with 24 points.
Raptors 107, Kings 101
At Sacramento, Calif., Jermaine O'Neal scored 36 points in his highest-scoring game in two seasons and the Raptors ended a 10-game losing streak in Sacramento.
The Raptors have won back-to-back games on a six-game road trip that was broken up by a three-day holiday break that allowed many of the Toronto players to go home for Christmas before returning to the team Thursday night. They responded to the time off by winning for just the second time in 13 trips to Arco Arena and the first since March 13, 1997.