CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Guard Kemba Walker scored 26 points, including a 3-pointer with 1.6 seconds in regulation to tie the score and the game-winner with 5.1 seconds left in overtime, as the Charlotte Hornets rallied to beat the Milwaukee Bucks 108-106 Wednesday.
The Hornets overcame a 24-point deficit in the second half, closing regulation with a 18-5 run that included a 9-0 spurt.
A loud sellout crowd of 19,439 was on hand at Time Warner Cable Arena as the Hornets made their official return, reclaiming their nickname after being the Charlotte Bobcats the past 10 seasons. The original Hornets played in Charlotte from 1988-2002 before that franchise was moved to New Orleans.
Charlotte also got 19 points from forward Marvin Williams, including a key 3-pointer late in the fourth-quarter rally. Forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist scored 17, and center Al Jefferson had 14 points and 10 rebounds. Guard Brandon Knight led the Bucks with 22 points, 13 assists and eight rebounds.
Heat 107, Wizards 95
MIAMI — Miami, playing the first game in the post-LeBron James era, defeated short-handed Washington in the opener for both teams.
Heat forward Chris Bosh posted game highs in points (26) and rebounds (15). Miami point guard Norris Cole, making his 13th career start and his first on opening night, had a career-high 23 points. Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade added 21 points despite sustaining a third-quarter calf injury. He left the game but returned in the fourth.
The Wizards were led by point guard John Wall (16 points, 11 assists), center Marcin Gortat (18 points) and forward Paul Pierce (17 points). In addition, Wizards forward Drew Gooden, making his first start in three years, had 18 points.
Celtics 121, Nets 105
BOSTON — Point guard Rajon Rondo, who missed the preseason with a broken hand sustained in a household fall, scored 13 points, dished out 12 assists and grabbed seven rebounds to lead Boston to a rout of Brooklyn Nets in the opener for both teams.
Center Kelly Olynyk scored 19 points, forward Jeff Green had 17, guard Avery Bradley 15, forward Jared Sullinger 13 and swingman Evan Turner, rookie guard Marcus Smart and guard Marcus Thornton 10 apiece for Boston. Forward Mirza Teletovic led the Nets, playing their first game under new coach Lionel Hollins, with 20 points.
The Celtics, who led by 26 points at the half, built a 29-point lead through three quarters and the Nets made a mild run at the start of the fourth.
Pacers 103, 76ers 91
INDIANAPOLIS — Center Roy Hibbert, the only available returning starter from Indiana’s 2013-2014 Central Division champion team, scored 22 points, and the Pacers used a strong 30-22 third quarter as the springboard for a victory over Philadelphia.
Hibbert, who had eight rebounds and seven blocks, got lots of help from guards Donald Sloan and Rodney Stuckey down the stretch after Philadelphia closed to within 93-89. Indiana finished with a 10-2 run to win by 12. Sloan and Stuckey scored 16 points apiece for the Pacers.
Guard Tony Wroten led the Sixers with 22.
Raptors 109, Hawks 102
TORONTO — Toronto opened its 20th season in the NBA with a victory over Atlanta. Center Jonas Valanciunas led the way with a team-high 17 points and eight rebounds.
Raptors forward Amir Johnson finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds, the largest opening-night totals of his 10-year career. Despite shooting just 4-for-16 from the field, guard DeMar DeRozan scored 15 points, recorded a career-high six steals and set a personal best with 11 rebounds.
Guards Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver and forward Mike Scott each scored 20 points for Atlanta.
Grizzlies 105, Timberwolves 101
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Center Marc Gasol scored a career-high 32 points and forward Zach Randolph added 25 points and 13 rebounds as Memphis defeated Minnesota in the opener for both teams.
Forward Thaddeus Young led Minnesota with 26 points.
Guard Mike Conley added 16 for Memphis.
Bulls 104, Knicks 80
NEW YORK– Playing in his first game in almost a year, guard Derrick Rose scored 13 points, dished out five assists and recorded three steals to help Chicago defeat New York at Madison Square Garden.
Rose missed the final 71 games of last season after tearing the meniscus in his right knee and sat out the entire 2012-13 season recovering from a torn ACL in his left knee. He was the 2011 NBA MVP.
Forward Taj Gibson led Chicago with 22 points while forward Doug McDermott, the National Player of the Year while at Creighton last season, contributed 10 points.
Nuggets 89, Pistons 79
DENVER — Forward Kenneth Faried had 22 points and 17 rebounds and guard Arron Afflalo had 15 points as Denver topped Detroit in the season opener for both teams.
Center Timofey Mozgov had 13 points and 11 rebounds and a key block late to lead Denver to the win.
Forward Josh Smith led Detroit with 25 points while guard D.J. Augustin had 15 off the bench for the Pistons.
Rockets 104, Jazz 93
SALT LAKE CITY — Forward Dwight Howard scored 22 points with 10 rebounds and forward Trevor Ariza contributed 20 points to help Houston spoil Utah coach Quin Snyder’s debut.
Houston also got 18 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds from guard James Harden.
Alec Burks led Utah with 18 points in his new role as a starting shooting guard. Forward Derrick Favors scored 16 and guard Trey Burke added 15 points in the season-opening loss.
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