NBA roundup

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 9, 2006

Associated Press

DALLAS — Dirk Nowitzki’s aim was off in his first game back from suffering blurred vision, yet he was the one Dallas player misfiring as the Mavericks extended their winning streak to 12.

Nowitzki finished 4-of-15, but was 10-of-10 from the line for 18 points in 20 minutes. He also had 10 rebounds. Josh Howard led Dallas with 24 points while shooting 10-of-14.

Cavs 106, Hawks 95

ATLANTA — LeBron James scored 31 points and the Cleveland Cavaliers pulled away from the Atlanta Hawks in the fourth quarter for a 106-95 victory.

James scored 13 points in the final period, including a trio of three-point plays. He also wowed the crowd with a couple of high-flying blocks on back-to-back possessions to ruin any hope of a comeback.

Joe Johnson scored 31 points for Atlanta, which fell behind by 10 points before the game was 3 minutes old and never led.

Pistons 108, Knicks 100

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Tayshaun Prince matched his career high with 31 points, Chauncey Billups added 22 points and 16 assists, and Detroit won its eighth straight.

The Pistons haven’t lost since a 100-99 home defeat to New Orleans dropped them to 3-5 on Nov. 15. The Knicks have lost six of seven.

Bulls 111, Hornets 108

OKLAHOMA CITY — Andres Nocioni scored a career-high 31 points, including two late free throws, and Chicago held off a series of comebacks for its third straight victory.

Rasual Butler finished with a career-high 33 points, and Chris Paul had his third career triple-double with 25 points, 18 assists and 11 rebounds.

Nuggets 106, Timberwolves 92

MINNEAPOLIS — Carmelo Anthony scored 35 points, Eduardo Najera outworked Minnesota’s post players for a double-double, and Denver beat the Timberwolves.

Kevin Garnett had 21 points and 11 rebounds and Ricky Davis also had 21 points for Minnesota, which has lost three straight.

Raptors 106, Celtics 102

TORONTO — Chris Bosh had 25 points and 11 rebounds as Toronto improved to 5-2 at home.

T.J. Ford had 13 assists and 10 points for the Raptors, who are only 1-8 on the road.