Carmelo Anthony scored 31 points in his return to the lineup, and the host New York Knicks beat the Brooklyn Nets, 100-86, on Wednesday night in the third meeting this season of the city rivals.
After two tight games in Brooklyn, the Knicks turned the first one at Madison Square Garden into a rout by dominating the second half. Anthony, who missed two games with a sprained left ankle, moved fine and shot well, though his scoring average against the Nets this season actually dropped to 37 points per game.
J.R. Smith added 19 points and Tyson Chandler had 16 points and 12 rebounds for the Knicks, who bounced back from their first home loss, Monday against Jeremy Lin and Houston, improving to 11-1 at MSG.
Joe Johnson scored 17 points for the Nets, who have lost three straight and eight of 10.
Deron Williams and Brook Lopez each had 16 points for Brooklyn.
Pierce leads Celtics
Paul Pierce scored 25 of his season-high 40 points in the second half, carrying the host Boston Celtics to a 103-91 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Rajon Rondo added 20 points and eight assists for the Celtics
Kyrie Irving paced the Cavs with 22 points. Tyler Zeller got his first career start, subbing for injured center Anderson Varejao, and had 20 points for Cleveland.
Magic top Wizards
J.J. Redick scored 17 points and fellow reserve E'Twaun Moore had 15, leading the host Orlando Magic to a 90-83 win over the Washington Wizards.
Arron Afflalo added 15 points for the Magic.
Nene had 20 points off the bench for the Wizards, who lost their fifth in a row. Jordan Crawford added 19 points and six assists.
Kevin Durant poured in 41 points to lead the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder past the Atlanta Hawks, 100-92. . . . Reserve guard Gerald Green scored a season-high 21 points to help the Indiana Pacers beat the visiting Utah Jazz, 104-84. . . . DeMar DeRozan had 23 points, Alan Anderson scored 12 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter, and the Toronto Raptors topped the host Detroit Pistons, 97-91.
Ramone Moore in D-League. Ramone Moore, a former Temple guard, was acquired Wednesday by the Springfield Armor of the NBA Development League. He joined the Armor after playing one game with Hapoel Tel-Aviv of the Winner League in Israel.