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Suns Overcome Pistons In Battle of League Leaders

Associated Press
Friday, March 4, 2005; Page D04

Steve Nash returned to the Phoenix lineup with 16 points and 14 assists to help the Suns rally from a 12-point deficit and snap the visiting Detroit Pistons' eight-game winning streak last night, 100-97.

Amare Stoudemire battled the Pistons' bruising front line for 26 points and 10 rebounds. Quentin Richardson scored 20, including 5 of 8 on three-pointers.

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Rasheed Wallace led Detroit with 22 points and 13 rebounds. Ben Wallace had 18 rebounds.

• HEAT 106, NETS 90: Shaquille O'Neal returned from a three-game absence because of a sprained left knee and had 20 points and 13 rebounds, and Dwyane Wade had 27 points, 8 assists and 6 rebounds to end host New Jersey's three-game winning streak.

The second half was so lopsided that Alonzo Mourning was able to make his Heat debut during garbage time, playing the final 2 minutes 19 seconds and grabbing two rebounds. The 11-year veteran, who left Miami as a free agent two summers ago, re-signed with the Heat this week after being traded from New Jersey to Toronto and then being waived by the Raptors.

Vince Carter scored 27 points to lead the Nets, but he shot just 1 for 11 in the second half and missed his final seven attempts.

• NUGGETS 96, PACERS 87: Marcus Camby dominated the lane at both ends and Carmelo Anthony had 28 points, helping host Denver to its fifth straight win.

The Nuggets improved to 12-4 since Coach George Karl took over on Jan. 27 and moved into a tie with the Los Angeles Lakers for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.


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