Bulls 93, Celtics 86
CHICAGO — Luol Deng scored 18 of his 26 points in the second half and Joakim Noah added 17 points and nine rebounds to lead the Chicago Bulls to a 93-86 win over the Boston Celtics on Thursday night.
The Bulls again played without Derrick Rose, out due to a strained groin for the 12th consecutive game. Chicago, which has been without Rose for 22 games this season, improved to 15-7 in his absence — including 8-4 during the latest stretch.
The Bulls rallied from 13 points down in the first half and pulled away in the fourth quarter to end its first two-game losing streak of the season.
Paul Pierce scored 22 points for Boston, who has lost two in a row after a winning a season-high five straight.
Knicks 96, Magic 80
ORLANDO, Fla. — Carmelo Anthony scored 19 points, Tyson Chandler had 12 points and 12 rebounds and the New York Knicks defeated the Orlando Magic 96-80 on Thursday night.
J.R. Smith and Toney Douglas each added 15 points for the Knicks, who won for just the third time in their last 13 visits to Orlando. New York also hit 13 3-pointers.
The Magic's loss came on the heels of coach Stan Van Gundy's comments Thursday morning that including him saying he'd heard from top team officials that Dwight Howard has asked that he be fired.
Howard was held to just eight points and eight rebounds.
Orlando has now lost five straight games for the first time since 2007.
Pistons' 99-94 win over Wizards
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Greg Monroe had 18 points and seven rebounds, Rodney Stuckey scored 15 points in his return from injury, and Ben Wallace made five key free throws down the stretch as the Detroit Pistons beat the Washington Wizards 99-94 Thursday night.
Even with Monroe playing well, Pistons coach Lawrence Frank went with the 37-year-old Wallace down the stretch to help stop John Wall's penetration.
The Wizards were missing Nene and Trevor Booker with foot injuries, but rallied from a 20-point deficit to pull within five late in the game. Wall finished with 28 points and 10 assists, while Kevin Seraphin had 15 points before fouling out.
Clippers 93, Kings 85
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Blake Griffin made three straight jumpers in the closing minutes to finish with 14 points and nine rebounds, lifting the Los Angeles Clippers to a 93-85 victory over the Sacramento Kings on Thursday night.
Griffin's last jumper with 2:18 remaining put the Clippers ahead by three, and they held on to rebound from a loss to the Lakers a night earlier that ended a six-game winning streak -- the franchise's best in 20 years -- and slowed momentum to overtake its crosstown rival in the Pacific Division.
Randy Foye scored 20 points and Chris Paul had 13 points and eight assists for Los Angeles, closing to two games back of the Lakers. The Clippers host Sacramento on Saturday night.