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Thriller ushers in shortened NBA season

By the CNN Wire Staff
December 26, 2011 -- Updated 1546 GMT (2346 HKT)
Miami Heat's Dwyane Wade takes a shot against the Dallas Mavericks during the NBA season opening game.
Miami Heat's Dwyane Wade takes a shot against the Dallas Mavericks during the NBA season opening game.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • New York Knicks beat Boston Celtics in season opener
  • Sunday's games also included a disappointing rematch of last season's NBA Finals
  • The season was delayed because of a months-long lockout
  • NBA players and owners reached a tentative deal in November

(CNN) -- The NBA rewarded patient fans Sunday with an exciting game that kick-started a season delayed five months by a lockout.

The comeback New York Knicks, behind Carmelo Anthony's 37 points, edged the Boston Celtics 106-104.

The much-anticipated rematch of last season's NBA Finals, between the Dallas Mavericks and the Miami Heat, turned out to be a bust. The Heat beat the champions 105-94, but the Mavs trailed by more than 30 points at times.

Get ready to crown King James

Other matches include the Chicago Bulls vs. the Los Angeles Lakers; the Orlando Magic vs. the Oklahoma City Thunder; and the Los Angeles Clippers vs. the Golden State Warriors.

In November, NBA players and owners reached a tentative deal to end the league's months-long lockout.

Barkley previews NBA season

At the center of the dispute behind the lockout was the debate over how much of the league's revenue share should go to players, including for pensions and medical benefits -- something their union funded in the past.

Owners had sought to change the old revenue-sharing arrangement that gave players 57% of the revenue. The new deal offers a virtual 50-50 split.

Full roundup of NBA action at Sports Illustrated

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