Carmelo Anthony tied his career high with 50 points and the New York Knicks won their ninth straight game, topping the injury-depleted Heat, 102-90, on Wednesday night in Miami.
Anthony finished 18 of 26 from the field, reaching 50 on a jumper with 16.9 seconds remaining. J.R. Smith scored 14 and Raymond Felton added 10 for New York.
Chris Bosh scored 23 points for Miami, which played without LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Mario Chalmers, all held out with injuries that are not believed to be serious. Mike Miller scored 18, Ray Allen finished with 16, and Norris Cole had 14 for the Heat, whose 17-game home winning streak was snapped.
The Knicks beat the Heat in three of their four regular-season matchups. They likely would not meet again before the Eastern Conference finals.
Miami’s magic number for clinching home-court throughout the NBA playoffs remained at five, and the Heat already have the No. 1 spot in the Eastern Conference wrapped up. The Knicks now lead Brooklyn by five games in the race for the Atlantic Division title.
It was only Miami’s second loss in its last 31 games.
Much of the star power was taken out of the equation more than eight hours before game time, when the Heat announced that James, Wade and Chalmers would not play. James has a sore hamstring, and Wade and Chalmers are dealing with ankle sprains. All are listed as day to day.
Lakers 101, Mavericks 81 — Kobe Bryant had 23 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists in his 19th career triple-double as the host Los Angeles defeated Dallas in a key game for the two teams struggling to get into the Western Conference playoff picture.
Dwight Howard had 24 points and 12 rebounds while hitting seven fourth-quarter free throws for the Lakers, who had lost four of six.
Wizards 90, Bulls 86 —John Wall had 27 points, 9 assists, and 8 rebounds, Emeka Okafor scored the go-ahead dunk in the final minute, and Washington won its eighth straight home game, beating Chicago.
Wall was 8 for 17 from the field and 11 for 13 at the free throw line as the Wizards maintained pursuit of becoming the best team not to make the playoffs.