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Monday, Jan. 7, 2013

'Melo drops 40 points in win


ORLANDO, Florida — New York coach Mike Woodson would like to see his team lean more on its defense to help it win games.

News photo
Down and dirty: The Magic's Aaron Afflalo gets tangled up with the Knicks' Amar'e Stoudemire as Carmelo Anthony looks on during New York's 114-106 victory. AP

He'll live with a few more of Carmelo Anthony's offensive exhibitions in the meantime.

Anthony scored 16 of his 40 points in the fourth quarter, helping the New York Knicks hold off the Orlando Magic 114-106 on Saturday night.

"Just a matter of us trying to get it going," Anthony said. "To get it going and doing whatever it takes to win a basketball game. That's what we did. . . . It seemed like when it was time to really buckle down and try to win the basketball game, we did those things."

J.R. Smith added 18 points off the bench and Tyson Chandler had 14 points and 12 rebounds.

The Knicks have won two straight overall and four in a row over the Magic, dating back to last season. They also improved to 2-1 since Amar'e Stoudemire returned to action following knee surgery.

"We were down coming into the fourth, and we held them to 17 points. That's the sign of a team that didn't want to lose," Woodson said. "(They) picked it up defensively and did what they had to do, and offensively they made plays."

Arron Afflalo and Jameer Nelson each had 29 points to lead the Magic, and Nik Vucevic contributed 11 points and 18 rebounds. Afflalo got treatment at halftime after taking a hard fall, and scored 20 in the second half.

"Clearly we have to learn how to win, if that makes sense," Afflalo said. "Coach is doing a great job in terms of the schemes of the game plan. We're definitely competing hard as players, but we need to learn how to win."

Orlando outrebounded New York 45-40, but had 14 turnovers as it extended its longest losing streak of the season to eight games.

All of the losses have come since the injury of starting forward Glen Davis, who continues to rehab a sprained left shoulder.

Orlando has played well against some of the East's top teams, with narrow losses over its past three outings to Miami, Chicago and now New York.

It's hardly a consolation prize, though, for a team that may not get Davis back in action for at least another week, if not longer.

"I told our guys that this is about different challenges throughout the course of the season and everyone wants to win — it's what makes us competitors," Magic coach Jacque Vaughn said. "We did a lot of good things tonight."

Hornets 99, Mavericks 96 (OT)

In Dallas, Eric Gordon completed a three-point play with 4.7 seconds left in overtime and New Orleans spoiled the Mavericks' first game this season with Dirk Nowitzki in the starting lineup.

Nowitzki had a team-high 20 points in 34 minutes, his most extensive action this season. He missed a free throw with 18 seconds left in regulation that would have put Dallas ahead by a point.

Pacers 95, Bucks 80

In Indianapolis, Roy Hibbert had 20 points, 15 rebounds and five blocked shots to lead Indiana past Milwaukee.

The Bucks scored the first six points of the third to grab a 53-52 lead. But the Pacers responded with an 8-0 run and cruised from there.

Celtics 89, Hawks 81

In Atlanta, Rajon Rondo had 14 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, and Boston rallied to beat the Hawks.

Paul Pierce scored 17 of his 26 points in the third quarter as the Celtics erased a 19-point deficit and went on to earn consecutive wins for the first time since late November against Oklahoma City and Orlando.

Nets 113, Kings 93

In New York, Brook Lopez scored 18 points in 17 minutes to lead six players in double figures, and Brooklyn got a nice effort from the bench in its third straight victory.

One night after needing two overtimes to escape with a slim victory in Washington, the Nets made sure the starters weren't too taxed.

Deron Williams and Joe Johnson both scored 15 points, but neither had to play even 30 minutes.

Rockets 112, Cavaliers 104

In Cleveland, James Harden scored 29 points, including 16 in the fourth quarter, and Houston beat the Cavaliers.

Kyrie Irving led Cleveland with 30 points, including 11 in the final period, but the Cavaliers fell short of winning two in a row for the second time this season.

Trail Blazers 102, T-Wolves 97

In Minneapolis, Nicolas Batum and Wesley Matthews each made five 3s and scored 26 points to lead Portland past injury-depleted Minnesota.

Spurs 109, 76ers 86

In San Antonio, Tony Parker had 20 points and Manu Ginobili added 19 to help the Spurs rout Philadelphia.

Nuggets 110, Jazz 91

In Denver, Danilo Gallinari scored 26 points and the Nuggets rebounded from a rare home loss to beat Utah.

Clippers 115, Warriors 89

In Los Angeles, Chris Paul had 27 points and nine assists, Blake Griffin added 20 points and the Clippers set a franchise record with their 12th straight home victory.

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