The Utah Jazz rallied from an 11-point deficit to beat a rusty Boston Celtics 90-85 on Thursday.
The Celtics were playing for the first time in a week and lost All-Star forward Kevin Garnett late in the second quarter with a strained right knee.
Deron Williams had 18 points and 10 assists to spark the Jazz, which outscored Boston 30-19 in the fourth quarter, closing the game on an 8-2 run.
Mehmet Okur led Utah with 19 points and reserve Matt Harpring had eight points and a clutch rebound as the Jazz pulled away in the final minute.
Paul Pierce’s 20 points led the Celtics, who missed a chance to overtake Cleveland for the Eastern Conference’s best percentage record.
Boston had a giant scare late in the first half when Garnett hurt himself while going up for an alley-oop late in the first half. He warmed up with his teammates before the second half, but the Celtics weren’t going to take any chances.
The Jazz narrowed the lead to three or four points several times, but couldn’t catch the Celtics until midway through the fourth quarter.
Harpring’s 15-foot jumper put Utah up 85-83 with 1:01 left before he pulled down the rebound after Ray Allen missed on a layup.
Williams added a jumper from the top of the key to put the Jazz up by four and Utah held on.
SPURS 83, PISTONS 79
In Auburn Hills, Michigan, San Antonio beat Detroit, boosting the Spurs’ lead in the Southwest Division to three-and-a-half games.
Tim Duncan had 18 points and 18 rebounds and Tony Parker added 19 points and 11 assists for San Antonio.
Detroit’s Allen Iverson led all scorers with 31 points.
San Antonio led 64-58 going into the fourth, but the Pistons brought it back to 78-77 with 3 minutes to play. Two stops gave the Pistons a pair of chances to take the lead and Iverson took advantage of the second with a layup with 1:21 to go.
Rasheed Wallace fouled Parker, who gave San Antonio an 80-79 lead from the line, and Iverson missed at the other end.
Wallace grabbed a rebound with 28 seconds left and had a chance to put Detroit back in front, but missed a fadeaway. Bruce Bowen was fouled before he could call a timeout.
Despite coming into the game shooting 47 percent from the line, Bowen hit both shots to make it 82-79 with 9.7 seconds left.
Iverson missed a tying 3-pointer and Duncan clinched the game from the free-throw line.