PHOENIX — Amare Stoudemire scored 26 points and Steve Nash had 18 points and 10 assists before sitting out the fourth quarter while the Phoenix reserves completed a 123-101 rout of the Denver Nuggets on Tuesday night that gave the Suns homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs.
The Suns made 14 of 24 3-pointers, 11 of 17 in the first three quarters. Phoenix jumped to an 18-2 lead and the Nuggets never cut it to single digits after the first quarter.
The Suns can finish no worse than No. 4 in the West and would be No. 3 if they win at Utah on Wednesday night. Denver, which finished its regular season, would get the No. 4 spot and a first-round homecourt edge if Phoenix beats the Jazz.
Carmelo Anthony scored 29 points to lead Denver.
LAKERS 106, KINGS 100: At Los Angeles, Pau Gasol had 28 points and eight rebounds, Shannon Brown scored 24 points and Kobe Bryant rested as the Lakers finished their regular-season home schedule with a victory over Sacramento.
Sasha Vujacic scored 13 points for the Lakers, who lost six of nine before Gasol and the reserves pulled away in the second half of their sixth straight win over the Kings, their formerly fierce Pacific Division rivals.
Tyreke Evans scored 10 points before his remarkable rookie season ended with a third-quarter ejection as the Kings wrapped up their fourth straight losing season with their 11th defeat in 12 games.
Bryant sat out to rest his litany of injuries, including a sprained ankle and a broken finger.
BULLS 101, CELTICS 93: At Chicago, Derrick Rose scored a career-high 39 points, Kirk Hinrich added a season-high 30 and Chicago helped their playoff chances with a victory over Boston.
The eighth-place Bulls lead Toronto by a game in the Eastern Conference and will make the playoffs as long as they finish with a better record, meaning they need a win at Charlotte on Wednesday or a loss by the Raptors to New York.
Fourth-place Boston, meanwhile, can forget about catching Atlanta for the third seed after falling for the sixth time in nine games.
Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 28 points.
Copyright 2016, Deseret News Publishing Company