LOS ANGELES (AP) Blake Griffin had 26 points, 11 rebounds and six assists, and the Los Angeles Clippers stormed out to a 31-point lead in the first quarter with Chris Paul back in the lineup and pummeled the Philadelphia 76ers 123-78 Sunday night.
Jamal Crawford scored 21 for the defending Pacific Division champions, who were 12-6 while Paul was sidelined with a separated right shoulder that occurred on Jan. 3 at Dallas. The seven-time All-Star point guard had seven points and eight assists in 23 minutes. DeAndre Jordan had 20 rebounds and 10 points, helping Los Angeles increase its division lead over idle Phoenix to four games.
Reserve Tony Wroten scored 21 points for the 76ers, losers of six straight and 13 of 16. Center Spencer Hawes missed all eight shots in 23 scoreless minutes and had just two rebounds.
The 45-point margin of victory was the largest for the Clippers’ franchise. The previous record was 39, set in a 121-82 victory over Chicago at Staples Center on Nov. 24.
Philadelphia never challenged after the Clippers built a 69-30 halftime lead – matching the largest halftime advantage in franchise history set in November against Chicago. Crawford’s 15-footer gave the Clippers their biggest lead, 89-33, with 6:01 left in the third quarter. It was 100-51 going into the fourth.
THUNDER 112, KNICKS 100
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Kevin Durant had 41 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists to help Oklahoma City beat New York.
Reggie Jackson added 19 points and six assists, and Serge Ibaka had 16 points and nine rebounds for the Thunder, who were coming off a 103-102 loss to struggling Orlando on Friday night.
Durant, the NBA’s leading scorer, got the best of his duel with New York’s Carmelo Anthony, the league’s No. 2 scorer. Anthony had with 15 points on 5-for-19 shooting for the Knicks, who have lost four of five.
Raymond Felton and Amare Stoudemire each scored 16 points for the Knicks.
The Thunder made 12 3-pointers and shot 55 percent overall.
MAGIC 93, PACERS 92
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Victor Oladipo had 23 points, including 13 in the fourth quarter, and Orlando rallied to surprise Indiana.
Indiana stole Orlando’s inbounds pass with 9 seconds left and Paul George was able to get off a 20-foot jumper. But it was deflected and rebounded by the Magic, who ran out the clock.
Orlando has beaten the top teams in both conferences in back-to-back games, having stunned Oklahoma City on Friday. The victory ties the Magic’s season-high win streak of three games. It also extends their home win streak to five consecutive games.
Nik Vucevic added 19 points and 13 rebounds.
George led the Pacers with 27 points. Lance Stephenson added 16. The loss ended Indiana’s win streak at four games.
BULLS 92, LAKERS 86
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Kirk Hinrich scored 19 points, Joakim Noah had 18 points and 13 rebounds, and Chicago held off Los Angeles after nearly blowing a 19-point lead.
Taj Gibson added 18 points for the Bulls, who never trailed against an injury-ravaged Lakers squad missing Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Jordan Farmar, Nick Young, Jodie Meeks and Xavier Henry.
Center Chris Kaman scored a season-high 27 points off the bench for the Lakers, who won their previous two games following a 3-19 slide that buried them in the race for a Western Conference playoff spot.
Point guard Steve Nash, playing his third game after missing 39 because of a nerve problem in his back, had eight points in 21-plus minutes before leaving in the third quarter because of irritation in his left leg.
NETS 93, PELICANS 91
NEW YORK (AP) – Rookie Mason Plumlee scored a season-high 22 points and matched his best with 13 rebounds in a high-flying performance, and Brooklyn used its best defensive first half in eight years as the springboard for the victory over New Orleans.
Brooklyn held New Orleans to 28 points in the first 24 minutes, its lowest total since also allowing 28 against the Lakers on Nov. 27, 2005. The Nets were fueled by their reserves, with their top scorers coming off their bench and no starters finishing in double figures.
Mirza Teletovic had 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Nets, who improved to 13-5 overall and 9-2 at home in 2014. Alan Anderson scored 13 points.
Anthony Davis had 24 points and nine rebounds for the Pelicans, who had won seven of 10. They used big fourth-quarter comebacks to win their previous two games, but fell too far behind to come back in this one.
WIZARDS 93, KINGS 84
WASHINGTON (AP) – Nene scored 18 points and led a strong defensive effort in Washington’s victory over Sacramento.
Bradley Beal scored 16 points, hitting two 3-pointers in the final 6 minutes. Marcin Gortat added 17 points and eight rebounds as Washington halted a two-game skid and reached the .500 mark.
Sacramento’s Isaiah Thomas scored 30 points and had eight assists. But DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay combined to hit 5 of 27 shots, with Cousins scoring 14 points and Gay finishing with five.
The Kings outrebounded the Wizards 49-38, but made only 35.4 percent of their field goal tries and went 2 of 11 from 3-point range.
CAVALIERS 91, GRIZZLIES 83, OT
CLEVELAND (AP) – Kyrie Irving scored 28 points and Cleveland won back-to-back games for the first time in a month with the overtime victory over Memphis.
The Cavaliers, who broke a six-game losing streak Friday night against Washington, have won both games since general manager Chris Grant was fired last week.
Irving scored the final four points in regulation to tie it. Luol Deng’s 3-pointer on the first possession of overtime put Cleveland ahead for good, 81-78.
Nick Calathes scored 17 points to lead Memphis, which has lost three of four since winning six straight.
Deng began the overtime scoring with a 3-pointer from the corner as the shot clock was winding down. Baskets by Dion Waiters and Anderson Varejao, sandwiched around a 3-pointer by Calathes, left Cleveland with an 85-81 lead. A resounding dunk by Waiters and four free throws by Irving put the game away.
MAVERICKS 102, CELTICS 91
BOSTON (AP) – Dirk Nowitzki scored 20 points, Shawn Marion finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds and Dallas beat Boston too extend its winning streak to a season-high five straight.
Jose Calderon added 18 points and Monta Ellis scored 11 for Dallas, which won for the sixth time in seven games and pulled 10 games above .500 for the first time this season at 31-21.
Vince Carter scored 14, Devin Harris had 12 points and Samuel Dalembert pulled grabbed 11 rebounds for Dallas.
The Mavericks led by six at halftime and pulled away in the third quarter by outscoring the Celtics 28-18.
Rajon Rondo had 15 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds for Boston, which had won three straight games. Jeff Green added 18 and Jared Sullinger had 11 points and 12 rebounds.