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NBA: Nets Extend Winning Streak with Win Over Hawks


The New Jersey Nets continued their late-season surge in the National Basketball Association with a 96-94 win over the Atlanta Hawks Tuesday.

Vince Carter scored 27 points for New Jersey, which claimed its 13th consecutive victory and its fourth Atlantic Division title in five years. The Nets need one more win to match a franchise-record winning streak set in the 2003-2004 season.

Meanwhile, LeBron James scored 37 points as the Cleveland Cavaliers routed the Philadelphia 76ers 124-91. Cleveland has won nine straight games. The loss snapped the 76ers' two-game winning streak. Philadelphia has lost eight of its last 11 games as it competes with the Chicago Bulls for the eighth and last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Chicago beat the Indiana Pacers 102-96, setting up a two-game showdown Wednesday and Saturday with the 76ers.

In other N.B.A. games Tuesday, the Detroit Pistons beat the New Orleans Hornets 101-93 for their fifth straight victory and 60th overall this season. Antonio McDyess scored a season-high 26 points to lead Detroit.

The Miami Heat downed the Milwaukee Bucks 115-89, with Shaquille O'Neal scoring 24 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. Wally Szczerbiak and Paul Pierce each scored 22 points to lead the Boston Celtics to a 124-120 win over the Toronto Raptors.

The Washington Wizards beat the hapless New York Knicks 105-90. Six Wizards players ended in double figures, including Antwan Jamison and Caron Butler, who scored 18 points each.

The Charlotte Bobcats defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 97-92, handing the Timberwolves their 12th consecutive road loss.

Chucky Atkins scored 22 points to lead the Memphis Grizzlies to a 100-75 win over the Golden State Warriors. The Dallas Mavericks beat the Sacramento Kings 127-101, thanks to a 29-point effort from Dirk Nowitzki.

The San Antonio Spurs downed the Utah Jazz 95-86...the Seattle SuperSonics topped the Houston Rockets 104-87...and the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Denver Nuggets 111-109.

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