NEW YORK – Joe Johnson’s 10th 3-pointer was maybe the toughest, coming while being fouled in the corner, and now he had a decision.
Settle for the best 3-point shooting night of the season, or stay on the court for the fourth quarter and a chance at history?
“I asked him, he wanted out. So he did his job,” Jason Kidd said. “I’m not a coach that’s going to sit someone when they’re hot.”
And Johnson was sizzling.
Johnson made 10 3-pointers, most in the NBA this season, and scored a season-high 37 points to lead the Brooklyn Nets to a 130-94 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night.
“My teammates kept telling me, when you catch it, just shoot it,” Johnson said.
Johnson finished 10 for 14 from behind the arc, including 8 of 10 during an incredible third-quarter shooting performance. He passed the nine 3-pointers made this season by Jeremy Lin, who also did it against the inept 76ers perimeter defense, and Stephen Curry.
Johnson scored 29 points in the third, his most in any quarter in his career. But after battling an illness the last few days and with the Nets ahead 100-73, Johnson declined the opportunity to play in the fourth quarter and chase the NBA record of 12 3-pointers held by Kobe Bryant and Donyell Marshall.
“I wasn’t worried about it,” Johnson said. “Most importantly I wanted to try to keep guys healthy and get some of the other guys a chance to play.”
He finished 13 of 20 overall in the kind of night few players have seen — though one Net said he had.
“Not of recent, but yes, I have,” 37-year-old Kevin Garnett said. “I’ve been in the league since like Moses. Not too much I ain’t seen.”
Deron Williams had 13 points and 13 assists for the Nets, who led by as many as 42 and won for the fourth time in five games.
Brooklyn finished 21 of 35 from behind the arc against a Philadelphia team that came in averaging 10.1 3-pointers allowed per game.
Pistons 101, Pacers 96
In Indianapolis, Josh Smith had 30 points, Greg Monroe finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds, and Detroit handed Indiana its first home loss.
The Pistons won for the second time in six games, ending a six-game skid in the series and a nine-game losing streak on the Pacers home court.
Lance Stephenson had a season-high 23 points, while Luis Scola scored 13 of his season-best 18 in the fourth quarter for Indiana (20-4), which was 11-0 at home coming into the game. Clippers 115, Spurs 92
In Los Angeles, Blake Griffin scored 27 points, hitting 11 of 15 free throws, and the Clippers cruised past San Antonio 48 hours after completing a seven-game road trip.
Chris Paul added 23 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, and Jamal Crawford had 17 points in his second straight start for Los Angeles.
Tim Duncan had 17 points and 11 rebounds for the Spurs, whose four-game winning streak ended.
Hawks 114, Lakers 100
In Atlanta, Kyle Korver sank three 3-pointers in the Hawks’ dominant third quarter, Al Horford scored 19 points to lead the hosts past cold-shooting Kobe Bryant and Los Angeles.
Paul Millsap had 18 points and Jeff Teague had 17 with 10 assists for Atlanta.
Bryant made only 4 of 14 shots for eight points. Nick Young led the Lakers with 23 points while making five 3-pointers.
Wizards 102, Knicks 101
In New York, Bradley Beal’s driving layup with 6 seconds remaining carried Washington past the Knicks.
New York didn’t use one of its three remaining timeouts after Beal’s basket. Carmelo Anthony took the inbounds pass, dribbled the up court and attempted a 3-pointer that bounced off the rim as time expired.
Heat 117, Jazz 94
In Miami, LeBron James finished with 30 points, nine rebounds and nine assists despite sitting some of the second half after twisting his left ankle, Dwyane Wade added 27 points and Miami rolled past Utah.
It was Miami’s 17th straight victory over a Western Conference opponent, the second-longest regular-season streak by an Eastern Conference team in NBA history. Boston won 20 straight over the West during a nine-month span of 1973.
Celtics 101, Timberwolves 97
In Boston, Jared Sullinger had 24 points and 11 rebounds, including a tie-breaking 3-pointer with 2:22 left that helped the Celtics hold off Minnesota.
Kevin Love had 27 points and 14 rebounds for Minnesota.
Magic 83, Bulls 82
In Chicago, Arron Afflalo scored 23 points and the Magic got double-doubles from Glen Davis and Nikola Vucevic in a victory over the slumping Bulls.
Forward Luol Deng had 26 points and eight rebounds for Chicago, which has dropped five of six.