Pistons rip ailing Celts

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AUBURN HILLS, Mich.- Richard Hamilton scored 22 points and Flip Murray added 21 as the Detroit Pistons ended an embarrassing two-game losing streak by beating the short-handed Boston Celtics 81-73 Saturday night.

The Pistons were coming off consecutive losses to Charlotte and Atlanta – a combined 22-46 this season – but bounced back to hand Boston its fourth loss in a row.

Boston dressed only nine players – three under the limit – and only one born before 1981. The Pistons had a vast advantage in experience, even without missing point guards Chauncey Billups (calf) and Lindsey Hunter (ankle).

Tayshaun Prince added 16 points for the Pistons, while Rasheed Wallace had 10 points and 11 rebounds.

Gerald Green led the Celtics with a career-high 24 points, but committed a costly flagrant foul in the fourth quarter. Ryan Gomes scored 17, while Al Jefferson added 12 points and a career-high 22 rebounds.

Bobcats 89, 76ers 83

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Adam Morrison scored 17 points, and the Charlotte Bobcats overcame a pregame blunder that left them a man short and two more costly technical fouls to beat the Philadelphia 76ers 89-83.

Derek Anderson added 15 points and Raymond Felton had 14 points and nine assists for the Bobcats, who won their season-high third straight game despite losing backup point guard Jeff McInnis late in the first quarter thanks to a bizarre scoring mistake. The team turned in the wrong official roster before the game that did not include the newly acquired McInnis as an active player, leading to his ejection.

Timberwolves 109, Nets 98

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MINNEAPOLIS – This one was easy, by the Minnesota Timberwolves’ standards.

Kevin Garnett scored 32 points and surpassed 10,000 rebounds for his career in Minnesota’s 109-98 victory over the New Jersey Nets.

Garnett pulled down 14 rebounds to become the 32nd player in league history to reach the milestone. Mark Blount added 15 points and seven rebounds for the Timberwolves, who used a 12-1 run midway through the fourth quarter to win for the ninth time in 12 games.

For the first time this season, the Wolves won a game by more than six points and improved to 6-1 in 2007.

Bulls 111, Grizzlies 66

CHICAGO – Ben Gordon scored 24 points and Luol Deng added 18 as the Chicago Bulls beat the Memphis Grizzlies 111-66 on Saturday night.

The Bulls had their easiest victory of the season despite missing Andres Nocioni and Ben Wallace. Nocioni was suspended for one game by the NBA for elbowing New Jersey’s center Mikki Moore on Thursday and Wallace missed the game with a sore back.

Heat 119, Jazz 110

SALT LAKE CITY – Dwyane Wade had 32 points and 10 assists, and the Miami Heat extended their longest winning streak of the season to four by beating the Utah Jazz 119-110 Saturday night.

Wade made 21 of 23 free throws and Miami improved to 4-1 on a six-game road trip, which concludes Monday against the Los Angeles Lakers. The Heat are also 4-2 since Ron Rothstein took over as interim coach for Pat Riley.

Suns 107, Magic 101

PHOENIX – Boris Diaw fell a rebound shy of a triple-double and the Phoenix Suns held off a late Orlando rally to beat the Magic 107-101 Saturday night for their ninth victory in a row.

Spurs 93, Wizards 80

SAN ANTONIO – Manu Ginobili scored 19 points to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a 93-80 victory Saturday night over the Washington Wizards, who lost coach Eddie Jordan to an ejection.

Tim Duncan had 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Tony Parker had 13 points and 10 boards. Fabricio Oberto had five points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the Spurs’ impressive defensive effort.

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