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                        === Johnson, Nets top Knicks ===
 
 New York, NY (Sports Network) - Joe Johnson poured in 25 points, including the
 go-ahead  jumper with  22.3 seconds remaining, as the Brooklyn Nets bested the
 cross-town rival New York Knicks, 88-85, on Monday at Madison Square Garden.
 
 Deron  Williams  donated 14 points and  12 assists, while Brook Lopez added 14
 points  and  11 rebounds for the  Nets, who have  won two straight and nine of
 their  last 10  to  pull within  one  game  of the  Knicks  atop the  Atlantic
 Division.
 
 "That's  Joe  Johnson," Nets interim  head coach  P.J. Carlesimo said. "He's a
 money player. He's been a money player his whole career."
 
 Carmelo  Anthony  scored a game-high  29 points to  go with seven assists, but
 missed  a  potential go-ahead jumper late in regulation. J.R. Smith and Amar'e
 Stoudemire chipped in 16 and 15 points, respectively, for the Knicks, who have
 lost four of their last six.
 
 With  the game  locked at  75-75 early  in the  fourth, Johnson  ripped off  a
 personal  8-2 surge, knocking down consecutive 3-pointers around a Smith layup
 before burying a jumper to make it 83-77 with 5:37 to play.
 
 The Knicks answered with a 7-0 spurt, which Anthony capped with a pair of free
 throws to put New York in front, 84-83, with 40.9 seconds remaining.
 
 On Brooklyn's ensuing touch, Johnson drove right and nailed a pullup jumper to
 restore Brooklyn's one-point edge with 22.3 ticks remaining.
 
 Following a timeout, Anthony caught a pass on the right wing and drove hard to
 the  basket, but  his short jump shot missed everything and Brooklyn corralled
 the rebound.
 
 "I  don't  make no excuses,"  Anthony remarked. "I  should've made the shot. I
 don't know what to say about that."
 
 Williams  then connected on two free throws, and after Jason Kidd split a pair
 at  the  other end,  Williams made 1-of-2  from the charity  stripe to make it
 88-85 with 5.7 seconds remaining.
 
 Smith  then drove  the length of the  court, but his 3-point try at the buzzer
 was off the mark and the Nets escaped with the victory.
 
 Neither  team  led by more  than five in a  tightly contested first frame that
 found the visitors clinging to a 26-24 advantage after 12 minutes.
 
 The Nets shot 40.0 percent from the field in the second to build their lead to
 47-41  heading into the  break, but the Knicks shot nearly 60 percent from the
 floor in the third to take a 68-65 edge into the final frame.
 
 
                                   Game Notes
 
 Brooklyn  and  New York split the  season series, 2-2 ... Brooklyn improved to
 11-2  under  Carlesimo ... Kris  Humphries finished with 11 points and 13
 boards  for Brooklyn  ... Williams  had made  52 straight  free throws  before
 missing one late in the fourth quarter.
 
 
 01/21 23:23:57 ET