Greg Oden was a happy man, with good reason. Nearly a year and a half after being drafted, he suited up for an NBA game and didn't get hurt.
Oden returned to the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night, scoring three points and grabbing two rebounds in 16 minutes off the bench to help his team beat the Miami Heat 104-96.
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The hard-luck center was the No. 1 pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, then missed all of last season following knee surgery and only managed to play 13 minutes after spraining his right foot against the Lakers in his long-awaited debut last month. He sat out six games with the injury, and acknowledged Wednesday night that he's got plenty of work to do.
"It will come," Portland Coach Nate McMillan said. "He was aggressive. He made some plays."
At times, Oden appeared winded and seemed to lag off the pace when teams were in transition.
"I have to get back on defense, get back in shape," Oden said. "That's my big thing right now."
Celtics 103, Hawks 102: Paul Pierce hit a fall-away jumper with 0.5 seconds left, scoring 34 points in all as the host Celtics overcame a 16-point, second-quarter deficit to beat Atlanta and send the Hawks to their first loss of the season.
Kevin Garnett had 25 points and 12 rebounds, and former Wildcat Rajon Rondo had 10 assists for the Celtics.
Lakers 93, Hornets 86: Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher each scored 20 points, and the visiting Lakers improved to 7-0 with a victory over New Orleans.
The Lakers never trailed and led by as much as 23 before nervously holding on against a team that is expected to be one of their chief rivals for Western Conference supremacy.
Bryant drained a clutch three-pointer while tightly guarded by James Posey with 1:08 left to make it 86-80.
Knicks 132, Grizzlies 103: Wilson Chandler scored a career-high 27 points, missing only one of his 12 shots, and the visiting Knicks made a franchise-record 19 three-pointers in a victory over Memphis.
Jamal Crawford added 25 points and eight assists for the Knicks, who shot 59 percent from the field and were 19-for-34 from outside the arc. Nate Robinson scored 21, hitting all eight of his shots, while Zach Randolph had 18 points and 10 rebounds.
Magic 109, Thunder 92: Dwight Howard recorded his first career triple-double with 30 points, 19 rebounds and 10 blocks and the Magic beat the host Thunder.
Howard had a double-double and matched his previous career-best of seven blocks in the first half then scored the Magic's first nine points after halftime to stretch the lead to 32.
76ers 106, Raptors 96: Elton Brand scored a season-high 25 points, Andre Miller and Andre Iguodala each had 18, and the 76ers snapped a three-game losing streak.
Willie Green scored 17 points and rookie Marreese Speights had 12 for the 76ers, who won for the first time in four road games this season.
Around the league
Thunder: Kevin Durant missed Oklahoma City's game against the Magic on Wednesday night because of a sore left ankle. Coach P.J. Carlesimo said Durant will be day-to-day and his status for Friday's game at New York is up in the air.
Bobcats: Scoring leader Jason Richardson will be out about a week following arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. Richardson underwent an exploratory procedure Wednesday after complaining about inflammation.
Heat: Forward Shawn Marion was held out of Miami's game against the Trail Blazers on Wednesday night because of continued problems with a strained groin.
Bulls: Rookie guard Derrick Rose is sitting out practice to rest a sore back but expects to play Thursday against the Mavericks.