Bulls hold off Celtics

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BOSTON — Derrick Rose returned from a one-game absence to score 25 points and help the Chicago Bulls hold off a second-half charge and beat the Boston Celtics 88-79 on Friday night.

Chicago's Luol Deng (left)shoots over Boston guard Paul Pierce. Derrick Rose scored 25 points and the Bulls held off a rally to get the win on Friday night.  MICHAEL DWYER/ASSOCIATED PRESS
MICHAEL DWYER/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Chicago's Luol Deng (left)shoots over Boston guard Paul Pierce. Derrick Rose scored 25 points and the Bulls held off a rally to get the win on Friday night.

The Celtics had trimmed a 52-33 halftime deficit to 67-66 on a 3-pointer by Mickael Pietrus with 10 minutes left in the game. Then Boston missed its next two shots, while Rose scored four consecutive points. Kevin Garnett responded with a short jumper, but Rose came through again with a 3-pointer for a 74-68 lead with 7:30 remaining.

Rose, who missed Wed­nesday’s 78-64 win over the Washington Wizards with a sprained left big toe, scored 12 points after Boston cut the lead to one.

Ray Allen scored 16 for Boston and Rajon Rondo had 14 points and 11 assists.

MAVERICKS 102, BUCKS 76

In Dallas, Dirk Nowitzki went over 23,000 career points, Vince Carter had his highest-scoring game in Dallas and the Mavericks stretched their winning streak to four games.

The defending NBA champion Mavericks (6-4) are finally on a roll after an 0-3 start.

Nowitzki became the 23rd NBA player with 23,000 points. He finished with 11 and his 23,008 career points are third among active players behind Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett.

TIMBERWOLVES 87, HORNETS 80

In New Orleans, Kevin Love scored 34 points, Ricky Rubio hit the tiebreaking free throws in his first career start, and Minnesota beat New Orleans.

Rubio finished with 12 points and nine assists. Love had 17 points in the third quarter and also grabbed 15 rebounds for his 11th consecutive double-double. The Timberwolves finished 33 of 38 from the foul line.

76ERS 120, WIZARDS 89

In Philadelphia, Jodie Meeks tied a career high with 26 points, Lou Williams had 19 and Spencer Hawes added 10 points and 10 rebounds to help Philadelphia beat NBA-worst Washington.

Meeks finished 10 of 11 from the floor and 6 of 7 from 3-point range.

PACERS 95, RAPTORS 90

In Toronto,Tyler Hans­brough made two key free throws with less than 15 seconds to play and Indiana overcame the ejection of leading scorer Danny Granger to beat Toronto.

George Hill scored a season-high 22 points for the Pacers.

ROCKETS 103, KINGS 89

In Houston, Kyle Lowry’s 25 points led five double-digit scorers and Houston knocked off Sacramento.

Former King Samuel Dalembert added 21 points and 16 rebounds, and Luis Scola also had 21 points and grabbed 11 boards.

Tyreke Evans scored 27 points for Sacramento.

PISTONS 98, BOBCATS 81

In Charlotte, N.C., Jonas Jerebko tied a career high with 22 points, Greg Monroe added 19 points and Detroit picked up just its third win of the season.

Both teams entered the game with identical 2-9 records and on lengthy losing streaks: the Bobcats having lost five consecutive games and the Pistons six in a row.

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