Durant leads Warriors past Cavaliers 99-92
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Klay Thompson hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1:33 left, Kevin Durant turned in another solid all-around performance, and the Golden State Warriors beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 99-92 on Monday in a Christmas Day rematch of the past three NBA Finals.
Durant’s block against a driving LeBron James with 24.5 seconds left went out of bounds off James, who said he thought he was fouled on the play. Durant finished with 25 points, seven rebounds and five blocked shots.
Kevin Love had 31 points and a season-best 18 rebounds, while James contributed 20 points, six rebounds and six assists in a rivalry missing one key piece: Warriors star Stephen Curry, who missed his eighth straight game with a sprained right ankle.
Thompson scored 24 points and Draymond Green had a triple-double with 12 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists. It was Golden State’s 12th win in 13 games.
THUNDER 112, ROCKETS 107
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Russell Westbrook had 31 points and 11 assists to help Oklahoma City to its fifth straight victory.
Paul George scored 24 points and Carmelo Anthony added 20 for the Thunder, who shot 54.4 percent from the field.
James Harden led the Rockets with 29 points, but he made just 7 of 18 field goals. The league’s leading scorer was coming off back-to-back 51-point games.
Trevor Ariza and Eric Gordon each scored 20 points and Clint Capela added 19 points and 10 rebounds for Houston, which lost its third straight.
Houston point guard Chris Paul was sidelined by a groin strain. The Rockets are 15-1 when he plays and 10-6 when he sits out.
WIZARDS 111, CELTICS 103
BOSTON (AP) – Bradley Beal scored 25 points, John Wall had 21 points and 14 assists, and Washington beat Boston in the Celtics’ first Christmas Day home game in franchise history.
Otto Porter Jr. added 20 points and Kelly Oubre Jr. finished with 16, helping Washington take the first meeting between the teams since Boston’s Game 7 victory at home in the second round of the playoffs last spring.
Boston lost for the third time in four games. Kyrie Irving and Jayson Tatum each scored 20 points for the Celtics, and Terry Rozier had 16.
Boston opened a 95-90 lead on Irving’s 3-pointer with 6:18 left, but the Wizards responded with a 12-0 run.
TIMBERWOLVES 121, LAKERS 104
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Jimmy Butler scored 23 points, Karl-Anthony Towns had 21 points and 10 rebounds and Minnesota got its first-ever Christmas Day victory.
Former Southern California standout Taj Gibson had 23 points and nine rebounds for the Timberwolves, who have won four straight. Jamal Crawford added 19 points.
Kyle Kuzma scored 31 points for the Lakers, who have lost three in a row and six of seven. Jordan Clarkson had 17 points, seven assists and six rebounds, and Julius Randle had 16 points and seven rebounds.
Minnesota pulled away when Towns and Crawford combined to score 12 straight points after Randle put Los Angeles up 84-83 with 11:14 to play.
76ERS 105, KNICKS 98
NEW YORK (AP) – Joel Embiid had 25 points and 16 rebounds, JJ Redick scored 24 points, and Philadelphia snapped a five-game losing streak.
Embiid and Redick were cleared to play after going through pregame warmups, and their presence gave the 76ers just enough to win their first Christmas Day appearance since 2001.
Embiid, who has been battling a bad back, powered through a big-man duel with Enes Kanter, who had a season-high 31 points and a career-best 22 rebounds.
Redick, who missed the last game with right hamstring tightness, helped the 76ers pull away from an 89-all tie midway through the fourth quarter.
Kristaps Porzingis scored 22 points for the Knicks, who fell to 22-30 on Christmas with their fifth straight loss on the holiday.