Scottie Pippen got to upstage his old team, but not without plenty of help from Steve Smith and the rest of his new Portland teammates. Smith hit three key jumpers in overtime to overshadow the Pippen-Charles Barkley feud and help the Trail Blazers defeat the Houston Rockets, 91-88, last night in Portland, Ore.
Pippen led the Blazers with 19 points, but was held scoreless after the third quarter. Smith and Rasheed Wallace each added 15 points for Portland, which improved to 12-2 and 5-0 at home.
Reserve Cuttino Mobley had 25 points to lead the Rockets, who dropped to 3-11. Barkley had 13 points and 11 rebounds.
The game was the first between the teams since Pippen was traded to the Blazers on Oct. 2. The deal came days after Pippen blasted Barkley on national TV, calling him "selfish" and "fat."
There were no confrontations on the court between the two players, and they did not speak to each other before, during or after the game.
"He said some things about me--obviously, I did not like them," Barkley said. "But I can't sit around and whine like a little girl. It's over with."
"I'm not interested in apologizing to him," Pippen said. "As far as I'm concerned, it's over, and it's behind me."
* RAPTORS 100, JAZZ 87: In Salt Lake City, Vince Carter scored 10 of his 18 points in a burst that opened the fourth quarter and reserve Tracy McGrady added 17 points for Toronto. Carter had 10 of Toronto's first 12 points in the fourth, helping the Raptors extend a 73-71 lead after three periods.
Karl Malone scored 24 points, six short of the 30 he needed to pass Michael Jordan for third place on the NBA's career scoring list.
* BUCKS 114, CELTICS 112: In Boston, Sam Cassell had 28 points and Ray Allen hit a go-ahead jumper with 44 seconds left as Milwaukee overcame a 21-point deficit.
After Vitaly Potapenko gave the Celtics a 108-103 lead with 3 minutes 20 seconds left, the Bucks used an 8-2 run to take a 111-110 lead on Allen's jumper.
Tim Thomas made two free throws to extend the lead to three before Kenny Anderson scored to pull the Celtics within one. Allen, who finished with 18 points, hit one free throw for the final margin as the Bucks ended a four-game road losing streak.
* PACERS 105, GRIZZLIES 86: Rik Smits led seven Pacers in double figures with 17 points as Indiana cruised to the home win. Jalen Rose scored 15 points while Dale Davis and Travis Best each added 14 for the Pacers, who shot 53 percent.
Shareef Abdur-Rahim had 22 for the Grizzlies, who dropped their sixth straight game and 28th consecutive road contest dating from last season.
* 76ERS 106, CAVALIERS 83: Tyrone Hill had 17 of his season-high 22 points in the first half as Philadelphia cruised at home. Hill's scoring was a huge boost to the 76ers, who were missing starters Theo Ratliff, Allen Iverson and Matt Geiger.
* SPURS 101, BULLS 78: Tim Duncan scored 23 points and had a career-high eight blocks to lead San Antonio at home. The Spurs won their fourth straight game as Duncan and Malik Rose dominated inside. Rose added 13 points, while Duncan pulled down 10 rebounds.
* NUGGETS 114, TIMBERWOLVES 105: Ron Mercer scored 27 points and George McCloud added 13 of his 21 in the fourth quarter as host Denver extended its winning streak to four games for the first time in nearly five years. Minnesota's Kevin Garnett suffered a sprained left ankle midway through the third quarter and did not return.
* PISTONS 93, HAWKS 91: Grant Hill scored 30 points and host Detroit won its fifth straight. Jim Jackson had 18 points for the Hawks, who are 1-7 on the road.