CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Gerald Henderson scored a career-high 35 points, and the Charlotte Bobcats stunned the Boston Celtics for the second time in four weeks with a 100-74 victory on Tuesday night.
Henderson had 21 by halftime on a night when the Bobcats led by as many as 28. They led 49-46 at halftime, then pushed the lead out to 76-61 after three quarters and continued to build the lead throughout the fourth.
The win snapped a 10-game losing streak and moved the Bobcats to 14-50, still by far the worst record in the league. Charlotte had lost 18 of its previous 20 entering Tuesday night.
The Bobcats also beat the Celtics 94-91 at Time Warner Cable Arena on Feb. 11.
Henderson finished 11 of 19 from the field and a perfect 12 of 12 from the free-throw line. The Bobcats also got 17 points from Ben Gordon, 13 points and 10 rebounds from Josh McRoberts, and 10 points from Kemba Walker.
The Celtics played without leading scorer Paul Pierce, who was given the night off by coach Doc Rivers. They wound up paying for it.
Jeff Green moved into Pierce’s starting spot and had 14 points, but Kevin Garnett was just 2 of 10 for five points and two rebounds in 20 minutes. The Celtics also got 14 points from Jordan Crawford and 10 each from Brandon Bass and Avery Bradley.
The Celtics (34-29) have lost two straight after winning their previous five.
NOTES: The teams will meet again on Saturday in Boston. … The Celtics were starting their 17th back-to-back set of the season on Monday night, with Toronto at home to follow on Tuesday. … When the Bobcats beat Boston last month, the Celtics were coming off a triple-overtime win over Atlanta the previous day. … Byron Mullens had 25 points and 18 rebounds for the Bobcats in that game. He has since lost his spot in the starting lineup to Josh McRoberts. … The Celtics’ 107-102 overtime win over Atlanta last Friday marked their 11th overtime game of the season, tops in the league. They’re 7-4 in overtime games. … The Celtics are 14-6 since losing Rajon Rondo for the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his right knee. The Celtics also remain without Jared Sullinger following lumbar disc surgery. … The Bobcats expect to miss Ramon Sessions another two weeks at least with a sprained MCL in his left knee. … The Celtics were coming off a 91-79 loss at Oklahoma City on Sunday that snapped a five-game winning streak. … The Bobcats’ last win was Feb. 19 at Orlando. … The Bobcats will hit the road next for a game at Toronto on Friday.
Lakers 106, Magic 97: Dwight Howard had 39 points and 16 rebounds as Los Angeles won in his much-anticipated return to Orlando as a visiting player.
The Magic repeatedly fouled the notoriously poor free-throw shooter and Howard tied his own NBA record by attempting 39 free throws. He made 25 of those attempts and blocked three shots against the squad he played for over his first eight NBA seasons.
Metta World Peace added 14 points as the Lakers moved within a half-game of the seventh-place Houston Rockets in the Western Conference playoff race.
Jameer Nelson scored 21 points, Tobias Harris had 17 points and 15 rebounds and Arron Afflalo scored 17 points for the Magic, who have the NBA’s second-worst record in the aftermath of trading Howard to the Lakers.
The contest was tied at 59 near the midway point of the third quarter before Los Angeles rolled off 12 straight points, ending with Kobe Bryant’s 3-pointer with 3:32 left.
The advantage reached 84-68 on Antawn Jamison’s basket two minutes into the fourth quarter and Orlando never made a significant run.
Heat 98, Hawks 81: Dwyane Wade racked up 23 points, six assists and five steals as host Miami rolled to its 19th consecutive win overall and its 15th in a row at home.
LeBron James added 15 points, seven rebounds and seven assists and Chris Bosh and Mario Chalmers scored 14 apiece for the Heat, who have not lost since Feb. 1 at Indiana and have won 12 games by double digits during the streak.
Josh Smith scored 15 points and Al Horford and Jeff Teague added 12 apiece for Atlanta, which has lost three straight and six of seven. The Hawks committed 24 turnovers and were 5-for-22 from 3-point range.
The Heat never trailed and used a 9-0 run early in the first quarter to gain some separation. Atlanta pulled even at 28 on Kyle Korver’s 3-pointer about two minutes into the second quarter, but it was never that close again.
Chalmers hit two 3-pointers during a 10-0 run that broke it open late in the second quarter, and the Hawks never got closer than seven after the break.
Cavaliers 95, Wizards 90: Dion Waiters scored 16 of his 20 points in the second half to lead six players in double figures and Cleveland completed a season sweep of visiting Washington.
Cleveland led by 11 after closing the third quarter on a 22-9 run and held on a late charge by the Wizards to win for the second time in its last six games. Alonzo Gee scored 17 points and Tristan Thompson recorded his fourth consecutive double-double with 13 points and 14 rebounds.
John Wall had a season-high 27 points and had 14 assists and Emeka Okafor added 18 points and 11 rebounds for Washington, which cut the deficit to 93-90 with seven seconds remaining before Waiters hit two free throws to secure the win.
The Wizards led 33-20 after the first quarter before the Cavaliers held them to a combined 32 points over the next two periods. Martell Webster scored 17 points and Nene had 15 points and 10 rebounds for Washington.
Cleveland struggled to close out the Wizards in its first game since star guard Kyrie Irving suffered a possible season-ending shoulder injury against Toronto on Sunday. The Cavaliers led by 12 with 4:28 left before the Wizards rallied with a 10-1 run.