- Associated Press - Thursday, March 20, 2014

NEW YORK (AP) - Carmelo Anthony scored 34 points and the New York Knicks opened the Phil Jackson era by beating the Indiana Pacers 92-86 Wednesday night for their season-high seventh straight victory.

With their new team president watching from a midcourt seat, the Knicks dominated the first half, then pulled away after the Eastern Conference leaders finally got untracked in the second half.

Fans stood to cheer Jackson in the first quarter and were on their feet again in the final minute to watch the Knicks beat the team that knocked them out of the playoffs last year.

Lance Stephenson had 21 points and nine rebounds for the Pacers, who had their four-game winning streak snapped and failed to extend their three-game lead over the Miami Heat, who lost to Boston earlier Wednesday.

CELTICS 101, HEAT 96

BOSTON (AP) - Rajon Rondo hit two running baseline shots in the last two minutes and Boston capitalized on the absence of LeBron James to beat Miami.

One night after scoring 43 points in a 100-96 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers, James sat out the game with back spasms and the Heat lost for the first time in their three games without him this season.

Rondo finished with nine points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds as Boston stopped a five-game losing streak. Avery Bradley led Boston with 23 points and had career highs of six 3-point baskets and nine 3-point attempts. Brandon Bass added 18 points.

The Heat, which had won their previous two games after losing five of six, were led by Wade with 17 points, Chris Andersen with 16 and Ray Allen and Udonis Haslem with 14 each.

BULLS 102, 76ERS 94

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - D.J Augustin scored 20 points, Taj Gibson had 19 points and 13 rebounds, and Chicago handed Philadelphia its 22nd straight loss.

The Sixers are four losses shy of matching the NBA record for longest-single season losing streak.

The Cleveland Cavaliers set the record of 26 consecutive losses in the 2010-11 season. The Vancouver Grizzlies (1995-96), Denver Nuggets (1997-98) and Charlotte Bobcats (2011-12) each lost 23 straight.

The Sixers also lost their 17th straight home game since beating Charlotte on Jan. 15.

Thaddeus Young scored 24 points for the Sixers and Tony Wroten had 17.

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