HOUSTON – Kobe Bryant scored 18 of his 37 points in the fourth quarter, winning a contentious duel with Ron Artest, and the Los Angeles Lakers ended Houston’s 12-game, home-court winning streak with a 102-96 win over the Rockets on Wednesday night.

Pau Gasol scored 20 points and Josh Powell added 17 for the Lakers, who overcame the absence of Lamar Odom to snap a three-game road losing streak. Odom, the Lakers’ second-leading rebounder, served a one-game suspension for leaving the bench during an altercation in Monday’s loss to Portland.

Reserve Von Wafer scored 20 points for the Rockets, who’ve lost all three meetings with the Lakers this season.

Magic 107, Bulls 79

ORLANDO, Fla. – Tony Battie had 18 points and eight rebounds, and the Orlando Magic got a big boost from the bench to clinch a playoff spot with a 107-79 win over the Chicago Bulls.

J.J. Redick had 13 points, and Marcin Gortat added 13 points and 15 rebounds in reserve for the Magic, who have won five of their last six games and moved closer to taking another Southeast Division title.

John Salmons had 18 points and eight rebounds, and Brad Miller added 11 points for Chicago.

Hawks 100, Jazz 93

ATLANTA – Joe Johnson scored 31 points and Josh Smith had 22 points and 12 rebounds to help the Atlanta Hawks end Utah’s 12-game winning streak with a 100-93 victory over the Jazz.

After Mehmet Okur’s 20-footer gave Utah an 87-85 lead with 5:02 remaining, the Jazz failed to score field goal.

The Hawks, who ended Cleveland’s 11-game winning streak on Dec. 13, led until Okur’s straightaway 3-pointer put Utah up 62-60 at the 4:44 mark of the third quarter. Atlanta has won three straight.

Knicks 116, Pistons 111

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – Reserve Nate Robinson scored 30 points to help the New York Knicks rally for a 116-111 overtime victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night.

Antonio McDyess had 21 points and a career-high 22 rebounds – Detroit’s first 20-20 game in over 11 years – but it wasn’t enough to overcome the absence of Rasheed Wallace (calf) and Allen Iverson (back).

David Lee had 16 points and 18 rebounds for the Knicks, who trailed by 10 points after three quarters before finishing strong for their second victory in two nights during a crucial road trip for their playoff hopes.

Hornets 109, Wizards 98

WASHINGTON – Taking over the game when he wanted to, Chris Paul compiled his NBA-leading sixth triple-double with 30 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds, steering the New Orleans Hornets to a 109-98 victory over the Washington Wizards.

The Wizards led by as many as 12 points in the first half, but Paul brought his team back, scoring or setting up teammates seemingly at will.

Timberwolves 104, Grizzlies 79

MINNEAPOLIS – Rookie Kevin Love had 19 points, 11 rebounds and a career-high four assists against the team that traded away his draft rights, and the Minnesota Timberwolves snapped a 10-game losing streak with a 104-79 victory against the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night.

Mike Miller had 18 points and 11 rebounds and Ryan Gomes scored 25 for the Wolves, who also won at home for the first time since Jan. 25, a span of 11 games.

O.J. Mayo had 18 quiet points and Mike Conley Jr. had 17 for the lethargic Grizzlies.

76ers 115, Raptors 106

PHILADELPHIA – Thaddeus Young scored a career-high 29 points, Samuel Dalembert snapped out of his recent slump, and the Philadelphia 76ers handed the Toronto Raptors their sixth straight loss with a 115-106 victory.

Dalembert, who entered the night with only three blocks over the last four games, recorded his 11th double-double of the season with a season-high 19 points, 13 rebounds and four blocked shots. Young was 13-for-19 from the field as Philadelphia (31-31) got back to .500.


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