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Archive for Monday, December 22, 2003

Magic win third straight

December 22, 2003

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— The Orlando Magic aren't the worst team in the Eastern Conference anymore.

Led by Tracy McGrady, Juwan Howard and new starting point guard Rod Strickland, the Magic won their third straight and for the sixth time in eight games Sunday -- 104-93 over the Toronto Raptors.

Orlando improved to 7-21, percentage points better than the Atlanta Hawks (7-22). The Magic had a franchise-record 19-game losing streak earlier this season.

Strickland had 14 points, eight assists and six rebounds, Howard had 20 points and 12 rebounds, and Drew Gooden added 14 points and 14 rebounds.

Donyell Marshall had 19 points and 19 rebounds for the Raptors in their fifth loss in six games.

Heat 104, Warriors 93

Miami -- Rookie Dwyane Wade scored 33 points, eclipsing the career-high he set Tuesday, as the Heat recovered from consecutive road losses at Philadelphia and Memphis and won their fourth straight at home.

Nick Van Exel and Jason Richardson each scored 17 points to lead Golden State.

Pistons 96, Jazz 75

Auburn Hills, Mich. -- Detroit broke 90 points for the first time since Nov. 28, getting 19 points from both Chauncey Billups and Chucky Atkins.

Detroit's three-guard rotation of Billups, Atkins and Richard Hamilton combined for 50 points. Tayshaun Prince added 18.

Celtics 87, 76ers 84

Toronto -- Paul Pierce scored 31 points, Jiri Welsch added 22, and Boston overcame a 12-point deficit in the final quarter. Aaron McKie paced the 76ers with 24 points, and rookie Kyle Korver went 5-for-5 from three-point range and scored 18.

Lakers 107, Suns 101

Los Angeles -- Karl Malone went down because of a knee injury, but the Lakers still won for the 10th time in 12 games behind 19 points apiece from Devean George and Gary Payton.

Shaquille O'Neal added 18 points and 18 rebounds.

Kings 117, Trail Blazers 98

Sacramento, Calif. -- Peja Stojakovic hit five three-pointers while scoring 29 points, and Vlade Divac had a season-high 26 points in Kings' seventh victory in eight games.

Rasheed Wallace scored 27 points, and Zack Randolph had 26 for the Trail Blazers.

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