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Knicks show no mercy

Malik Rose knocked down a pair of 18-foot jumpers to complete a 14-0 run to start the fourth quarter, getting a measure of revenge against the team that traded him last month as the New York Knicks defeated the San Antonio Spurs, 88-75, last night at Madison Square Garden.

Rose had 18 points -- his most since joining the Knicks 10 games ago -- and seven rebounds against the team he spent the past 7 1/2 seasons with, making his first start for New York as Kurt Thomas was sidelined by an infected elbow.

Stephon Marbury scored the Knicks' final 14 points of the third quarter and finished with 31 points and 10 assists despite being guarded by Bruce Bowen, one of the league's best defenders.

New York, trying to keep its slim playoff hopes alive, gained a game on the fading Orlando Magic and pulled within 3 1/2 games of eighth-place Philadelphia in the Eastern Conference standings with 17 games remaining.

Devin Brown scored 22 points for the Spurs, who were without Tim Duncan (sprained ankle) and were held to their second-lowest point total of the season.

Tony Parker added 14 points, but only 4 came after he started the game 5 for 5 and scored San Antonio's first 10 points. Without Duncan, the Spurs relied too much on the 3-point shot (5 for 22) and were at a loss to find any offense when the Knicks surged.

Bobcats 102, Magic 97 -- Brevin Knight hit a running jumper with 12.4 seconds to play to help Charlotte break its 10-game losing streak with a victory over visiting Orlando.

After helping the Bobcats climb out of a 16-point hole to take the lead midway through the fourth quarter, Knight had to help them squeak out the victory while playing with five fouls.

Charlotte led just 97-95 after Orlando's Grant Hill made a pair of free throws with 31 seconds to play. The Bobcats called a timeout to draw up a play for Knight, who patiently dribbled at the top of the key while the clock ticked away.

He then beat Jameer Nelson off the dribble, and scored over 6-foot-11-inch Dwight Howard -- no easy task for the diminutive 5-10 Knight.

Mavericks 103, Hornets 86 -- Dirk Nowitzki had 25 points and 8 rebounds, and rookie Devin Harris added a season-high 17 points as host Dallas beat New Orleans in Avery Johnson's second game as the Mavericks' head coach. The Mavericks have won both games since Johnson took over for Don Nelson Saturday and have won five of six overall.

Bulls 105, Hawks 91 -- Eddy Curry scored 24 points in his return to Chicago's lineup after missing three games with a strained hamstring and Ben Gordon added 17 in the Bulls' victory over visiting Atlanta.

Clippers 96, Trail Blazers 89 -- Elton Brand and Corey Maggette each scored 22 points as host Los Angeles beat Portland.

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