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Minus Bryant, Lakers lose

Without the suspended Kobe Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers' late rally fell short in their season-high third straight loss, 99-94, to the Knicks last night in New York.

Eddy Curry had 27 points and nine rebounds for the Knicks.

Bryant was penalized one game without pay yesterday for hitting San Antonio's Manu Ginobili in the face late in LA's overtime loss to the Spurs Sunday.

Without his 28.4 points per game, the Lakers shot 43.5 percent and lost for the fifth time in six games. It was a rough way for the Lakers to start an eight-game Eastern trip, their longest since 1989. Bryant will be back tonight when Los Angeles visits the Celtics.

He hoped to play yesterday, seeking a hearing at the league office in the afternoon since he was already in New York. But that request was denied, since NBA policy is for the player to serve his suspension and hope to get his money back later if he wins his appeal.

"I'm blown away by [the suspension]," said Bryant, who maintained his hitting Ginobili was an accident. "It just makes no sense."

Wizards 104, Pistons 99 -- Gilbert Arenas had 36 points, 11 assists, and 7 rebounds for host Washington.

The win kept the Wizards ahead of the Pistons atop the Eastern Conference and gave the teams a split of the four-game season series.

Heat 110, Bucks 80 -- Dwyane Wade scored 28 points and Miami beat visiting Milwaukee to snap a three-game losing streak.

Miami was playing without injured starters Shaquille O'Neal (left calf) and Jason Williams (left foot).

Cavaliers 124, Warriors 97 -- Sasha Pavlovic scored a career-high 24 points filling in for LeBron James and host Cleveland rolled.

James missed his second game in a less than a week with a sprained right big toe.

Mavericks 122, SuperSonics 102 -- Austin Croshere had a career-high 34 points as Dallas stretched its home winning streak to 14 games.