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Dec. 21, 2012 at 11:07 PM
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Bulls hand Knicks second home loss

NEW YORK, Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Luol Deng and Marco Belinelli teamed in launching Chicago to a 22-point lead through three quarters Friday and the Bulls held on to edge New York 110-106.

Despite putting together a big fourth-period rally, the Knicks suffered their second home loss of the season. New York has dropped just three of its last 13 games overall.

Deng had 29 points and 13 rebounds while Belinelli had 22 points and seven boards. Joakim Noah contributed 15 points and 12 rebounds for Chicago, which had an 83-61 advantage heading into the final period.

New York scored 45 points in the fourth quarter, but could come no closer than the final margin.

Carmelo Anthony went 10-of-25 from the field while leading the Knicks with 29 points. J.R. Smith added 26.

Report: Players agree to decertify union

TORONTO, Dec. 21 (UPI) -- NHL players have given their union the go-ahead to begin the process through which antitrust action can be taken against the league, TSN reported Friday.

The network said there was overwhelming agreement to permit the union to decertify, although the report said the players had set a deadline of Jan. 2 for such action to take place.

A decertification threat could serve to break the logjam in negotiations that have thus far failed to end a three-month lockout of NHL players.

NBA players used a similar tactic during last year's lockout and a new collective bargaining agreement was reached in less than 2 weeks.

Friday's report came one day after the NHL said it would cancel all games through Jan. 14. More than half the planned schedule has been wiped out by the lockout along with the All-Star Game and the Winter Classic.

Toronto's win streak reaches five games

TORONTO, Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Amir Johnson's two free throws with 43 seconds gave Toronto a three-point lead Friday and the Raptors held on to defeat Orlando 93-90.

Toronto has won five games in a row after recording just four victories in its first 23 games.

The Raptors led by 11 with less than 6 minutes to play, but Orlando rallied to within one when Jameer Nelson made a 3-pointer with 57 seconds left.

Johnson's foul shots accounted for the final score and the Magic's J.J. Redick missed a 3-pointer that would have tied it with 10 seconds to play. Orlando had a four-game winning streak snapped.

DeMar DeRozan paced Toronto with 17 points and eight rebounds. Jose Calderon contributed 13 points and nine assists.

The five-game winning streak is Toronto's longest in almost 3 years.

Orlando was paced by 26 points from Arron Afflalo and 16 from Nikola Vucevic.

Hoosiers romp past Florida Atlantic

BLOOMINGTON, Ind., Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Cody Zeller paced a steady Indiana parade to the foul line Friday and the No. 6 Hoosiers crushed Florida Atlantic 88-52.

Zeller played only 22 minutes, but hit 6-of-9 from the field and was 12-of-13 from the line in scoring 24 points. Notre Dame went 26-of-27 from the charity stripe while improving to 11-1.

Indiana has put together two one-sided triumphs since suffering an overtime loss to Butler last Saturday that knocked the Hoosiers out of the No. 1 spot in the national rankings.

The Hoosiers held Florida Atlantic scoreless for a 5-minute stretch in the first half and took a 55-25 lead at halftime.

Christian Watford pitched in 17 points for the Hoosiers and Victor Oladipo had 16 while making 6-of-8 from the field.

Florida Atlantic (5-7) managed just 19 field goals for the game and was led by 25 points by Greg Gantt. It was the Owls' fourth straight loss.

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