The two teams that have defeated the Boston Celtics twice this season are the New Jersey Nets and the Philadelphia 76ers. The National Basketball Association roundup in yesterday's Sports section incorrectly listed the Los Angeles Lakers in place of the 76ers.
Mike Gminski's career-high 41 points and 22 rebounds enabled the New Jersey Nets to beat the Boston Celtics, 108-98, last night in East Rutherford, N.J.
The Los Angeles Lakers are the only other team to beat the Celtics twice this season. Just two days earlier, Nets Coach Dave Wohl had called his players underachievers.
The Celtics think even less of them.
"It's difficult to get up for a team like this," said Coach K.C. Jones, whose team blew a 14-point lead.
"We're set for the rest of the season. We have the best record in the league. We didn't need it. The only reason we played it was because it was scheduled and we had to."
The Celtics are 65-14 but, thanks to the Nets, won't match their best-ever record of the 1972-73 season: 68-14.
The Nets moved a game ahead of Washington. If they stay ahead, they will play injury-riddled Philadelphia in the first round of the playoffs, and the Bullets would have to play Central Division champion Milwaukee.
Gminski made 15 of 23 shots from the field and 11 of 12 foul shots. "Things were flowing tonight," he said.
*Kings 113, Jazz 108: Otis Thorpe scored 10 points in the fourth quarter -- seven in a row the last four minutes -- to win the game in Salt Lake City.
Utah's Adrian Dantley got 45 points to pass Atlanta's Dominique Wilkins for the NBA scoring lead. With two games to go, Dantley is averaging 29.99 points, Wilkins 29.93.
*Spurs 114, Suns 102: The Spurs are in the playoffs despite a 34-47 record, their worst ever. They earned the eighth and last spot in the Western Conference when Mike Mitchell scored 22 points and Artis Gilmore 20 in Phoenix.
The Suns failed to make the playoffs for the first time in nine seasons.
*Clippers 132, Nuggets 127: The Clippers, who wanted San Antonio's playoff spot, won, too, while they were listening to the progress of the game in Phoenix on the public address system in Los Angeles. They were leading by 87-80 in the third period when they heard the bad news.
Not even Marques Johnson's 32 points could help them.