MIAMI (AP) — Joe Johnson scored 19 points, Mason Plumlee was credited with a block on LeBron James’ dunk attempt in the final seconds, and the Brooklyn Nets finished off a four-game season sweep of Miami by beating the Heat 88-87 on Tuesday night.
It was the third time Brooklyn beat Miami by a single point; the other win came in double-overtime.
Marcus Thornton scored 16 points and Paul Pierce added 14 for the Nets, who became the first team in the last two years to sweep the Heat. Miami was the only team in the league to beat every team last season and would have repeated that feat with a win Tuesday.
James had 29 points, 10 rebounds and six assists for the Heat, who remained a half-game ahead of Indiana, and one in the loss column, in the race for the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. Chris Bosh scored 12 and Norris Cole added 10 for Miami.
THUNDER 107, KINGS 92
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Caron Butler made all six of his 3-point attempts to finish with 23 points, and Oklahoma City started the fourth quarter on a 16-0 run to pull away for the victory.
Kevin Durant scored 23 points but was never needed in the final quarter, stopping his streak of scoring at least 25 points in 41 consecutive games. Serge Ibaka added 19 points and four rebounds for the Thunder, who rested Russell Westbrook ahead of Wednesday night’s game at the Los Angeles Clippers.
Oklahoma City (56-21) is 1½ games ahead of the Clippers (55-23) for the Western Conference’s No. 2 playoff seed.
DeMarcus Cousins collected 24 points and 14 rebounds, and Travis Outlaw scored 24 points in Sacramento’s third straight loss.
TIMBERWOLVES 110, SPURS 91
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Ricky Rubio scored 23 points and Gorgui Dieng had 12 points and 15 rebounds, leading Minnesota to the win.
Kevin Love had 19 points and 12 rebounds and Corey Brewer scored 14 for the Timberwolves, who have beaten Miami and San Antonio in two of their last three games.
Kawhi Leonard had 11 points and six rebounds for the Spurs, who were playing without Tony Parker and have now lost two of three following a 19-game winning streak. Parker has a back injury, but coach Gregg Popovich said before the game he didn’t believe it was that serious.
Manu Ginobili left in the third quarter with a left calf contusion, and the Spurs were just 4 for 17 from 3-point range in a listless performance.
MAVERICKS 95, JAZZ 83
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 points on 9-of-11 shooting, and the Mavericks earned their fifth consecutive victory.
Dallas shot 56 percent from the field and had six players score in double figures. Monta Ellis had 16 points and reserve Vince Carter added 13.
Derrick Favors scored 19 points for the Jazz, who lost for the 18th time in their last 21 games. Reserve Enes Kanter added 15 points and 19 rebounds, and Richard Jefferson had 15 points.
Dallas opened the game by making 17 of 18 shots. The Mavericks shot 94.1 percent (16 of 17) from the floor in the first quarter alone.
PISTONS 102, HAWKS 95
ATLANTA (AP) — Rodney Stuckey scored 29 points, Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond each had a double-double and Detroit snapped a 10-game skid in Atlanta.
Atlanta has five games left in the regular season and a 1½-game advantage over New York for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot.
Paul Millsap had 24 points and 12 rebounds for Atlanta, which had won three of four.
Monroe finished with 21 points and 13 rebounds and Drummond had 19 points and 17 rebounds for the Pistons, who have won two straight after dropping five of six.
ROCKETS 145, LAKERS 130
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Terrence Jones and James Harden scored 33 points apiece, and the Houston Rockets kept up their playoff push with their third straight victory.
Chandler Parsons scored 19 points for the Rockets, who used a 49-point third quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers to solidify their hold on fourth place in the Western Conference standings despite their second-worst defensive performance of the year. Houston won the opener of a three-game road trip without injured Dwight Howard and Patrick Beverley.
Steve Nash moved into third place on the NBA’s career assists list for the miserable Lakers (25-53), who tied the franchise record for losses in a single season with their worst defensive performance of the year.