Tonight's main event* PHOENIX at LOS ANGELES...


Tonight's main event

* PHOENIX at LOS ANGELES LAKERS (10:30): On Nov. 8, the day after Magic Johnson announced his retirement, the Suns pummeled the Lakers, 113-83, at Phoenix. Since then, the Lakers have a four-game winning streak and the Suns a five-game losing streak.

Yesterday's highlights

* THE STAR: Rik Smits, Pacers, scored 13 of his 26 points in the third quarter, sparking a 25-9 second-half spurt to lift Indiana to a 118-101 victory over Detroit.

* SIGNINGS: Former Terp Brian Williams, the first-round pick of the Orlando Magic, signed a multi-year contract that is believed to be for $4.6 million over four years. The 6-foot-11 forward will be in uniform when the Magic play Utah tomorrow.

* SUPERB IN DEFEAT: Dennis Rodman had 19 rebounds, including eight offensive, but it wasn't enough to lead Detroit to victory. Rodman leads the NBA with 5.8 offensive boards per game.

* STARTS: First-round draft pick Dale Davis of Clemson, signed by the Pacers earlier in the day, made an impressive debut in 13 minutes by blocking two shots and grabbing five rebounds.

* SHOOTING BLANKS: Minnesota is shooting 40.2 percent from the field this season, easily the worst in the NBA. Felton Spencer (43.3) is the only Timberwolves starter shooting over 40 percent.

* STREAKS: New Jersey has dropped seven straight since an opening-night victory over Charlotte. Included in the losing streak, however, are three losses by only two points and one overtime loss. The Nets hope to end the string tonight at home against Sacramento, which has lost an NBA-record 40 straight road games.

* STOPS: San Antonio leads the league in team defense, allowing only 95.7 points per game. Aside from a 107-101 overtime victory against Cleveland on Nov. 8, the Spurs have held every opponent under 100 points.

* SWATS: Portland's 7-foot center Kevin Duckworth has two blocked shots on the season, one less than Sacramento's 5-foot-7 guard Spud Webb.

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