Basketball - Season-high score for Kobe as Lakers stay alive in play-off quest

Kobe Bryant scored a season-high 47 points as the LA Lakers edged out Portland to keep their play-off hopes alive.

Basketball - Season-high score for Kobe as Lakers stay alive in play-off quest

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Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant (24) looks to pass as Portland Trail Blazers small forward Victor Claver (18) and shooting guard Sasha Pavlovic (R) defend (Reuters)

Lakers 113, Trail Blazers 106

Kobe Bryant set a Rose Garden record by an opponent with his season-high 47 points and visiting Los Angeles edged Portland to keep its play-off hopes alive.

Pau Gasol had 23 points and nine assists while Dwight Howard added 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who maintained their one-game hold on the eighth and final play-off spot in the Western Conference with three games to play.

Damian Lillard led Portland with a career-high 38 points along with nine assists. The Trail Blazers were within 108-104 with 1:15 left, but Steve Blake grabbed two critical offensive rebounds in the final minute to seal the Lakers' victory.

Bryant played 48 minutes and made 14-of-27 shots from the field - and all 18 from the foul line.

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Nuggets 96, Spurs 86

Wilson Chandler scored 29 points and Corey Brewer added 28 as Denver downed San Antonio to set a franchise record with its 21st consecutive home victory.

Andre Iguodala had 12 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists as the Nuggets improved to a league-best 36-3 at home while surpassing the record set by the 1984-85 squad.

Denver has won five straight and is one game ahead of Memphis for the third seed in the Western Conference. San Antonio fell into a tie with Oklahoma City for the top seed in the West.

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Clippers 111, Timberwolves 95

Chris Paul led the way with 19 points and 11 assists as Los Angeles easily handled visiting Minnesota to grab its third straight win.

Blake Griffin added 19 points, eight rebounds and seven assists for the Clippers, who are two games behind the Denver Nuggets for the third spot in the Western Conference.

Nikola Pekovic scored 20 points and Derrick Williams had 13 and 10 boards as the Timberwolves dropped their second game in as many nights.

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Kings 121, Hornets 110

John Salmons scored 22 points while Jason Thompson and Marcus Thornton added 20 apiece as Sacramento salvaged the finale of its five-game home stand.

The Kings snapped their five-game losing streak at home.

Eric Gordon scored a game-high 23 points while Robin Lopez and Brian Roberts each contributed 20 for New Orleans, which completed a 1-4 road trip.

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Suns 102, Mavericks 91

Goran Dragic recorded 21 points and 13 assists as Phoenix ended their 10-game losing streak.

Shawn Marion had 22 points and nine rebounds while Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 points for Dallas, who fell three games behind the Los Angeles Lakers for eighth place in the Western Conference with four games remaining.

The Lakers face Portland later on Wednesday.

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Heat 103, Wizards 98

Ray Allen scored 23 points off the bench and Rashard Lewis added 17 as Miami set a franchise record with its 62nd victory and clinched home-court advantage throughout the play-offs despite playing without four starters.

LeBron James (hamstring), Dwyane Wade (ankle), Chris Bosh (illness) and Udonis Haslem (ankle) all sat out Wednesday's game.

A.J. Price scored 23 points and John Wall collected 17 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds for the Wizards, who had a nine-game home winning streak snapped.

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Nets 101, Celtics 93

Deron Williams had 29 points and 12 assists as Brooklyn moved closer to locking up the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference.

Brook Lopez scored 21 points and Joe Johnson added 20 as the Nets moved 3-1/2 games ahead of Chicago and Atlanta with four to play in the race for fourth place and home-court advantage in the opening round of the play-offs.

Paul Pierce scored 23 points to lead the Celtics, who maintained a three-game lead for the seventh seed when Milwaukee lost in overtime to Orlando.

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Magic 113, Bucks 103 (OT)

Nikola Vucevic had 30 points and 20 rebounds for his second successive 20-20 outing and Tobias Harris matched a career high with 30 points and grabbed a career-best 19 rebounds as Orlando notched its 14th consecutive home victory over Milwaukee.

The Magic scored the first four points of the extra session and never trailed again to snap a five-game losing skid.

John Henson scored 17 points and posted career highs of 25 rebounds and seven blocks for Milwaukee, who remain three games behind seventh-place Boston in the Eastern Conference play-off race.

Milwaukee lost guard Brandon Jennings to Achilles' tendon soreness early in the game but had a 91-86 lead with 1:20 left.

The Magic kept pushing and forced overtime when a three-pointer by Harris with 1.9 seconds left tied the score 95-95.

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Hawks 124, 76ers 101

Josh Smith collected 28 points and 12 rebounds as Atlanta crushed Philadelphia to snap a three-game slide.

John Jenkins added 21 points off the bench for the Hawks (43-36), who moved into a virtual tie with the idle Chicago Bulls (42-35) for the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference.

Thaddeus Young had 28 points and eight rebounds and Nick Young scored 19 off the bench as the 76ers dropped their third successive game by at least 19 points.

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Pistons 111, Cavaliers 104

Rookie Andre Drummond scored a season-high 29 points and grabbed 11 rebounds as Detroit completed a four-game season sweep of Cleveland.

Greg Monroe added 23 points and eight rebounds as the Pistons beat the Cavaliers for the sixth consecutive time.

Kyrie Irving scored 27 points and Tristan Thompson had 19 and eight rebounds for Cleveland.

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