LOS ANGELES - The New Orleans Hornets put a temporary stop to the 'Linsanity' on Friday night. Trevor Ariza scored 25 points, Marco Belinelli had 17 and the injury-decimated visiting Hornets cooled off the Jeremy Lin-led New York Knicks' season-high seven-game winning streak, 89-85.
"I don't think he expected to go without a defeat this year," Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni said of Lin's first loss as a starter. "I think he's fine."
Lin tossed in 26 points but committed a whopping nine turnovers, while Amare Stoudemire also had 26 along with 12 rebounds for the surging Knicks (15-16 ), who lost to the team with the league's second worst record at 7-23.
"It's on me in terms of taking care of the ball and the game in general," Lin said. "If everyone's going to credit me for these last seven games, then I definitely deserve this one. So that's fine by me."
The undrafted and twice cut second-year point guard from Harvard, Lin had averaged 24.4 points while sparking the Knicks to their longest run in almost a year since the NBA's first American-Taiwanese player was put into the rotation nearly two weeks ago.
With Lin carelessly turning the ball over eight times in the opening half, the listless Knicks fell behind by 14 points early and played catch-up all game. However, they rallied to within 82-80 on Lin's two free throws with 66 seconds left.
But rookie Gustavo Ayon's lay-up pushed the Hornets' lead to four, and after Lin missed badly on a runner, Greivis Vasquez made one of two free throws with 33.2 seconds remaining.
After Lin's two free throws with 27.2 seconds left made it 85-82, the Knicks trapped Belinelli along the sideline near mid-court, but with nowhere to go, Landry Fields inexplicably fouled him. Belinelli sank both free throws, making it 87-82.
Jarrett Jack's two free throws jacked the lead to seven before Stoudemire's three-point play drew the Knicks to within four with 11 seconds left. But the Hornets held on for their season-high third straight victory.
"I don't think this is good because I don't like losing," Lin said.
Elsewhere: Miami Heat 111, Cleveland Cavaliers 87: LeBron James scored 28 points against his former team, Dwyane Wade added 22 and the Heat finished its six-game road trip, with five straight wins after roughing up the Cavaliers.
Dallas Mavericks 82, Philadelphia 76ers 75: German wunderkind Dirk Nowitzki erupted for 24 of his 28 points in the second half and grabbed 12 rebounds, as the visiting Mavericks rallied from 15 down en route to their sixth straight win after slipping past the Sixers.
Oklahoma City Thunder 110, Golden State Warriors 87: James Harden scored 25 points, Kevin Durant had 23 points with 10 rebounds as the Thunder swept the three-game season series from the visiting Warriors, but lost All-Star guard Russell Westbrook in the third quarter to a right ankle sprain.
Charlotte Bobcats 98, Toronto Raptors 91: Reggie Williams scored a season-high 22 points and the league-worst Bobcats broke a 16-game losing streak after topping the Raptors.
LA Lakers 111, Phoenix Suns 99: Kobe Bryant scored 36 points, Andrew Bynum had 17 points with 14 rebounds and the Lakers beat the visiting Suns at Staples Center for the ninth time in the last 10 games.
Memphis Grizzlies 103, Denver Nuggets 102: Dante Cunningham's tip-in with less than a second left, lifted the Grizzlies past the visiting Nuggets for their third straight win despite squandering a 23-point cushion. Corey Brewer topped Denver with all 26 of his season-high points in the second half.
Orlando Magic 94, Milwaukee Bucks 85: Dwight Howard had 26 points with 20 rebounds, Ryan Anderson scored 23 and the Magic rallied for its fourth straight win while sending the visiting Bucks to their fourth consecutive loss.
Detroit Pistons 114, Sacramento Kings 108: Rodney Stuckey poured in a season-high 36 points, Brandon Knight added 23 points with 10 assists as the Pistons beat the visiting Kings, who received 26 points and 15 rebounds from DeMarcus Cousins.
Minnesota Timberwolves 111, Houston Rockets 98: Kevin Love had 33 points with 17 rebounds, Nikola Pekovic added a career-high 30 points with 12 boards, powering the visiting Timberwolves past the Rockets.
Utah Jazz 114, Washington Wizards 100: Al Jefferson scored 26 of his season-high 34 points in the first half and grabbed 12 rebounds, carrying the Jazz over the visiting Wizards.
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