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Nets take 2-1 lead over Raptors with 102-98 win

Brooklyn Nets' Paul Pierce (34) and Kevin Garnett (2) react after a play during the first half of Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Toronto Raptors on Friday, April 25, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Brooklyn Nets' Paul Pierce (34) and Kevin Garnett (2) react after a play during the first half of Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Toronto Raptors on Friday, April 25, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Joe Johnson scored 29 points, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett brought a charge to their first playoff game in Brooklyn, and the Nets held off the Toronto Raptors, 102-98, last night for a 2-1 lead in their first-round series.

Johnson made the clinching free throws with 3.1 seconds left after the Nets blew almost all of a 15-point, fourth-quarter lead. Deron Williams added 22 points and eight assists for the sixth-seeded Nets, who host Game 4 tomorrow night.

Pierce had 18 points, and he and Garnett provided the game’s signature plays late in the second quarter, a reminder that the Nets brought the veterans here as much for their bravado as their basketball.

But all that experience almost didn’t matter after the Nets made a series of mistakes down the stretch.

DeMar DeRozan scored 30 points for the Raptors, who have lost 13 straight road playoff games. Patrick Patterson added 17 points but missed two free throws with a chance to tie for Toronto, whose last postseason victory was May 6, 2001, in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals at Philadelphia.

Bulls 100, Wizards 97

Mike Dunleavy scored 35 points, one shy of his career-high, Jimmy Butler hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 24 seconds remaining, and Chicago trimmed the deficit to 2-1 in the series.

Dunleavy went 12-for-19 from the field, including a career-high eight 3-pointers on 10 attempts, for the Bulls, who are attempting to become only the fourth NBA team to win a seven-game series after losing the first two at home.

Game 4 is tomorrow in Washington.

Bradley Beal scored 13 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter for the Wizards.

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