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NBA Roundup : Streaking Celtics Win a Division Title--It's Their 20th

March 22, 1986|From Times Wire Services

The Boston Celtics beat the Chicago Bulls, 126-105, at the Boston Garden Friday night to clinch the Atlantic Division title, the 20th time they have won a division championship.

It was the Celtics' 23rd consecutive victory at home. In eight of the last nine they have led the entire second half. In their last 16 wins overall, the margin of victory has been at least 11 points 14 times.

"They're almost plain bored," Chicago Coach Stan Albeck said after Boston won its seventh straight game. "That's the feeling I got sitting out there. Everything they do is orchestrated with a perfect game plan. They react very well to every situation."

Larry Bird had 32 points and Kevin McHale 22 as the Celtics improved their record to 57-13. The Bulls' losing streak reached four games, and they fell 1 1/2 games behind the Cleveland Cavaliers and one behind the Indiana Pacers in the three-way battle for the final Eastern Conference playoff berth.

Philadelphia 112, Washington 105--Charles Barkley had 27 points and 18 rebounds at Philadelphia as the 76ers handed the Bullets their fifth straight loss.

The game was the first for new Bullet Coach Kevin Loughery, who replaced the fired Gene Shue on Wednesday.

Phoenix 105, Detroit 103--Walter Davis scored 11 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter, including a decisive 14-foot jump shot with 33 seconds remaining at Phoenix, as the Suns handed the Pistons their fourth straight loss, all on the road.

After Davis' game-winning jumper, the Pistons had a chance to tie, but Isiah Thomas' jumper bounced off the rim with three seconds left, and Bill Laimbeer missed on four tap-in attempts. The loss dropped Detroit four games behind Atlanta in the race for second place in the Central Division.

Atlanta 107, Dallas 103--Dominique Wilkins hit a fallaway jumper and two clinching free throws in the final 39 seconds as the Hawks won at Dallas. Wilkins finished with 28 points.

Portland 115, Seattle 108--Kiki Vandeweghe scored 36 points and Kenny Carr added 26 points and 18 rebounds at Portland as the Trail Blazers won for the fifth time in their last six games. Gerald Henderson paced Seattle tith 21 points.

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