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Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011

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Overjoyed: Boston's Ray Allen exults after hitting a shot against Los Angeles in the first quarter on Thursday night to break the NBA's all-time record for 3-pointers. Allen passed Reggie Miller to set the mark. The Lakers beat the Celtics 92-86. AP PHOTO

Allen reaches top of charts

Surpasses Miller to become NBA's all-time leader in 3-pointers

BOSTON (AP) Kobe Bryant took no special pleasure in spoiling Ray Allen's record-setting night.

Still, the Los Angeles Lakers sure enjoy ruining a Celtics celebration.

"It's always fun to beat Boston," center Andrew Bynum said.

Bryant scored 20 of his 23 points in the second half, leading the Lakers to a 92-86 victory in an NBA Finals rematch on Thursday night.

Allen became the NBA's career leader in 3-pointers in the first quarter, but Bryant later put him on the bench in foul trouble during his big second half that rallied Los Angeles from an early 15-point deficit.

Pau Gasol added 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who split the regular-season series with their biggest rivals and got a sorely needed victory against one of the league's top teams. Bynum, the subject of trade rumors in the never-ending Carmelo Anthony saga, finished with 16 points and nine rebounds.

As Bryant exited the locker room, a security guard told the All-Star guard he would see him in June.

That would be fine with Bryant.

"This is one of the best atmospheres, if not the best atmosphere playing in the league today," Bryant said.

It was at its raucous best in the first quarter, when Allen hit two 3-pointers to pass former Indiana Pacers star Reggie Miller (2,560), who was sitting courtside calling the game for TNT. But Allen made only one more and had 20 points after scoring 12 in the first quarter.

"I almost felt a little embarrassed because there was so much attention surrounding this 3-point record," Allen said. "It was so overwhelming, but it was a great moment. I'll remember this for the rest of my life."

Paul Pierce had 15 points for the Celtics, who came in shooting an NBA-best 49.7 percent and shredded the Lakers for 60 percent shooting in their 109-96 victory at Los Angeles on Jan. 30, but went cold after a strong start in this one and finished at 40 percent.

Without Shaquille O'Neal and Jermaine O'Neal, the Celtics were outrebounded 47-36. Kevin Garnett had 11 boards, but shot only 4 of 13 for his 10 points.

Allen tied the record with his first 3-pointer with 4:14 left in the first quarter, but missed on the next possession with the crowd ready to roar. He nailed the record breaker with 1:48 to go, taking a pass from Rajon Rondo as he trailed on a delayed break and pulling up from the right wing for a 22-14 lead.

Allen had 12 points in the period, then was honored during the break with a loud, standing ovation.

Nuggets 121, Mavs 120

In Denver, Arron Afflalo hit a 5.8-meter shot at the buzzer and the Nuggets beat Dallas, ending the Mavericks' 10-game win streak.

Carmelo Anthony scored 42 points and Chauncey Billups had 30 for Denver, which overcame a nine-point deficit in the last 2:51 to win.

Afflalo scored seven points to help the Nuggets rally from 119-110 down.

Suns 112, Warriors 88

In Phoenix, three days after his 37th birthday, Steve Nash had 18 points and 11 assists, then sat out the fourth quarter on Thursday night and watched the hosts complete a rout of Golden State, the Suns' most one-sided win this season.

MJ gives pointers

CHARLOTTE , N.C. (AP) Short on players for practice, the Charlotte Bobcats found an extra body in the front office: Michael Jordan.

The Hall of Famer and Bobcats owner suited up for Thursday's workout, participating in a full-court practice and showing a few of the old moves that helped make him a six-time NBA champion.

"He's Mike. He's been kicking our (butts). He still has it," forward Gerald Wallace said. "He doesn't have this quickness, but he can score, he's a shooter. The last thing to ever go is your jump shot and he has that."

Jordan, who turns 48 next week, has been spending more time at practices and shootarounds, getting on the floor and doing some teaching. Thursday's practice was his most involved yet.



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