James gets the better of Bryant

LeBron James won the battle of the 20,000-point men as the Miami Heat beat Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers 99-90 on Thursday night.

James, who had took Bryant's record as the youngest man to reach the landmark, poured in 39 points as well as adding eight assists and seven rebounds.

Bryant in contrast could only score 22 points.

Jamal Crawford paced the Los Angeles Clippers with 22 points as they eased past the Minnesota Timberwolves 90-77.

Blake Griffin added 20 points for the Clippers, who improved to 31-9, while Luke Ridnour led the Timberwolves with 21 points.

Lastly, the Milwaukee Bucks were 98-94 winners over the Phoenix Suns.

Carmelo Anthony returned to the building where he won Olympic gold last summer to inspire the New York Knicks to a 102-87 victory over the Detroit Pistons in the regular-season game at the O2 Arena in London.