Bulls 101, Heat 97
Miami’s 27-game winning streak was snapped by host Chicago when a furious comeback by LeBron James and his teammates fell short.
The Heat finished six games short of the record held by the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers.
Luol Deng scored 28 points, Carlos Boozer added 21 points and 17 rebounds, and the Bulls brought the Heat’s pursuit of the record to a screeching halt despite another big game from James.
Miami’s superstar did all he could to keep the run going, scoring 32 points in a physical final few minutes that saw the MVP even collect a flagrant foul.
The Heat hadn’t lost since the Pacers beat them in Indianapolis on Feb. 1. But after grinding out some close wins lately, including a rally from 27 down in Cleveland, they simply came up short down the stretch in this one.
Hawks 107, Raptors 88
Al Horford scored 10 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter, Jeff Teague had 24 points and 13 assists and Atlanta clinched a playoff berth for the sixth straight season, beating host Toronto.
Josh Smith added 19 points for the Hawks, who used a 16-0 run midway through the fourth to win for the 13th time in the last 15 meetings with the Raptors.
76ers 100, Bucks 92
Spencer Hawes had 15 points and a career-high 17 rebounds, Jrue Holiday and Damien Wilkins each scored 18 points, and host Philadelphia beat Milwaukee.
Thaddeus Young and Dorell Wright both scored 14 points for a Sixers team that had six players in double figures. The Sixers returned from a 1-3 road trip to win their third straight game at home. On Fan Appreciation Night, the Sixers gave them something to feel good about.
Bobcats 114, Magic 108
Gerald Henderson and Kemba Walker each scored 34 points, and host Charlotte handed injury-riddled Orlando its eighth straight loss in a matchup of the NBA’s worst teams.
The Bobcats erased a 19-point, first-quarter deficit behind the shooting of Henderson, who finished 12-of-18 from the field and 9-of-10 from the foul line.
Walker did a little bit of everything, dishing out nine assists and grabbing seven rebounds as the Bobcats won for the fourth time in five games at home.
Clippers 105, Hornets 91
Blake Griffin scored 19 points, Chris Paul added 16 points and nine assists, and Los Angeles beat host New Orleans.
Caron Butler and Jamal Crawford each scored 13 for the Clippers, who were playing one night after falling in overtime at Dallas. Chauncey Billups briefly returned from a right groin strain to score 11 points before leaving the game with the same injury. But the Clippers opened up a 13-point lead in the fourth quarter and pulled even with Denver for the third-best record (49-23) in the Western Conference.
Lakers 120, Timberwolves 117
Kobe Bryant had 31 points and seven assists and Dwight Howard had 25 points, 16 rebounds and five blocks to lead Los Angeles to a victory over host Minnesota, the Lakers’ 22nd straight win over the Timberwolves.
Pau Gasol added 17 points and nine rebounds for the Lakers, who had lost three in a row and were playing their first game without defensive stopper Metta World Peace. He will have surgery on a torn meniscus today, leaving the Lakers to chase the playoffs without him.
Pacers 100, Rockets 91
Roy Hibbert scored a season-high 28 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, and Lance Stephenson added a season-high 21 points to lead Indiana to a victory over host Houston.
The Pacers never trailed and led by as many as 19 points. Houston made several runs, once cutting the lead to four points, but Indiana answered each time to stay on top and hold on for the victory.
Knicks 108, Grizzlies 101
J.R. Smith scored 35 points, his second straight 30-point game, and host New York withstood a furious rally to beat Memphis.
Carmelo Anthony added 22 points and Iman Shumpert had 16 as the Knicks tied a season high with their sixth straight win.
Smith scored 32 points against the Boston Celtics on Tuesday.
Thunder 103, Wizards 80
Russell Westbrook scored 21 points, Kevin Durant added 20 and host Oklahoma City beat the Washington Wizards.
Kevin Martin had 18 points for the Thunder, who came in 1½ games behind San Antonio for the top spot in the Western Conference. San Antonio was hosting Denver.
Washington had won its previous two games against Oklahoma City.
Spurs 100, Nuggets 99
Tim Duncan had 23 points and 14 rebounds and host San Antonio escaped with a win over Denver when Nuggets veteran guard Andre Miller missed a short jumper at the buzzer.
Danny Green added 20 points and Tony Parker had 18 points and 11 assists for the Spurs, who remained 1½ games ahead of Oklahoma City in the race for the top spot in the Western Conference. Kawhi Leonard chipped in with 11 points and Tiago Spiltter had 10.
Jazz 103, Suns 88
Al Jefferson and Gordon Hayward scored 25 points apiece and host Utah defeated Phoenix to stay within a game of the eighth-place Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference playoff battle.
Utah (36-36) used a 10-0 run to open the fourth quarter and led by as many as 19 while outscoring Phoenix 56-32 in the paint.
Jefferson finished 12 of 23 with nine rebounds, two blocks and two steals.