Nuggets stop Warriors’ 11-game winning streak, 96-81
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Gary Harris scored 19 points to lead a balanced Denver offense and the Nuggets stopped the Warriors’ 11-game winning streak with a second impressive road victory in two nights, beating Golden State 96-81 on Saturday.
Nikola Jokic added 18 points and nine rebounds and Jamal Murray had 14 points, six rebounds and five assists for the Nuggets after their Friday win at Portland. They held the defending NBA champions to a season low for points.
Kevin Durant had 18 points in a particularly poor shooting performance for the typically efficient NBA Finals MVP. He was 6 for 17 and missed all five of his 3-point attempts as the Warriors shot 38.6 percent.
Draymond Green had 10 points, six assists and five rebounds in his second game back after missing five of six with soreness in his right shoulder. He took a sharp elbow to the face from Jokic with 7:27 remaining and went down hard.
Klay Thompson scored 15 for the Warriors, still minus two-time MVP Stephen Curry because of a sprained ankle.
CELTICS 117, BULLS 92
BOSTON (AP) – Kyrie Irving scored 25 points, Jaylen Brown had 20 and Boston coasted past Chicago.
Jayson Tatum added 13 points for the Eastern Conference-leading Celtics (27-9) as all five starters were in double figures. Reserve guard Marcus Smart scored 11 and rookie Daniel Theis grabbed a season-high 15 rebounds to go with 10 points.
Bobby Portis paced the Bulls (10-22) with 17 points. Chicago lost its second straight after a seven-game winning streak.
The Celtics avenged a lopsided defeat in Chicago on Dec. 11, when they lost by 23. Irving didn’t play in that game because he was rested.
THUNDER 103, JAZZ 89
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) – Russell Westbrook had 27 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, and Oklahoma City beat Utah for its fourth straight win.
Utah had no answer for the trio of Westbrook, Paul George and Carmelo Anthony.
Westbrook had his 11th triple-double of the season. George had 26 points, five rebounds, six steals and two blocks, and Anthony added 16 points.
Rookie guard Donovan Mitchell scored 29 points for the Jazz after missing the last two games with a big toe contusion.
PELICANS 109, HEAT 94
MIAMI (AP) – Ian Clark scored 19 points, Anthony Davis added 17 and New Orleans went on a big second-half run to pull away from Miami.
DeMarcus Cousins had 16 points, eight assists and seven rebounds for the Pelicans, who were 15 for 25 from 3-point range and shot 53 percent overall. E’Twaun Moore scored 15 and Jrue Holiday had 13.
Tyler Johnson had 20 points for the Heat, who got outscored 27-16 in the third quarter. A 17-2 run put New Orleans up by 17 late in the third, and the outcome was not in doubt from there.
WIZARDS 130, MAGIC 103
WASHINGTON (AP) – Mike Scott scored 18 points, Otto Porter Jr. and Bradley Beal each had 17, and Washington handed injury-ravaged Orlando its eighth straight defeat.
Washington, which scored its most points this season, rebounded from a 35-point loss at Brooklyn on Friday night. The Wizards had seven players in double figures.
Markieff Morris and Kelly Oubre scored 16 apiece. John Wall had 10 points and 13 assists.
Orlando, which has lost 19 of 22, was led by Elfrid Payton’s career-high 30 points.
Magic center Nikola Vucevic broke his left index finger in the first quarter and will be out indefinitely. Vucevic joins three of Orlando’s opening-night starters on the sidelines with injuries. Evan Fournier, Aaron Gordon and Terrence Ross are also hurt.
HAWKS 112, MAVERICKS 107
ATLANTA (AP) – Dennis Schroder matched his career high with 33 points, including 27 in the second half, to help Atlanta beat Dallas in a matchup of last-place teams.
After missing Friday night’s loss at Oklahoma City with a sprained ankle, Schroder hit a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 1:21 left to put the Hawks ahead 110-107.
Ersan Ilyasova added 19 points and seven rebounds for the Hawks (8-25), who got 13 points off the bench from rookie John Collins and won for just the second time in eight games.
Harrison Barnes led the Mavericks (9-25) with 22 points. Dirk Nowitzki scored 18, and J.J. Barea had 15 points and 12 assists off the bench as Dallas lost for the eighth time in 10 games.
RAPTORS 102, 76ERS 86
TORONTO (AP) – DeMar DeRozan scored 29 points, Serge Ibaka had 17 and Toronto beat Philadelphia for its 10th straight home victory.
Delon Wright matched his season high with 14 points while Kyle Lowry and Jonas Valanciunas each had 12 for the Raptors, who have won six straight overall and 12 of 13.
Toronto is an NBA-best 12-1 at home and is tied with Golden State for the league’s best December record at 10-1.
Joel Embiid, Philadelphia’s leading scorer and rebounder, returned after missing the previous three games because of a sore lower back to play in Toronto for the first time in his NBA career.
Embiid had 14 points and eight rebounds in 23 minutes, but the 76ers lost for the 18th time in 19 meetings with the Raptors.
PACERS 123, NETS 119, OT
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Victor Oladipo scored 38 points and was perfect from the free-throw line, helping Indiana escape with a victory over Brooklyn.
Myles Turner had 23 points and nine rebounds and tied his career high with six blocks, and Bojan Bogdanovic finished with 17 points and six rebounds for the Pacers, who came back from down 19 to take an 85-84 lead on Lance Stephenson’s free throw with 8:29 remaining in regulation.
Spencer Dinwiddle led the Nets and tied his career high with 26 points. He made three free throws with 19 seconds left in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 111 and force overtime.
DeMarre Carroll finished with 20 points and 13 rebounds and made a 3-pointer to tie the game at 119 with 45 seconds left in overtime. Oladipo made four free throws in two trips to the line in the final 29 seconds to seal the win.
HORNETS 111, BUCKS 106
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Dwight Howard had 21 points and 16 rebounds, Kemba Walker had 19 points and Charlotte battled back from an 18-point deficit to beat Milwaukee.
Treveon Graham and Frank Kaminsky each had 14 points as Charlotte’s bench shot 16 of 27 from the field.
Khris Middleton had 31 points, while John Henson and Eric Bledsoe each had 16 for the Bucks, who had beaten the Hornets the night before in Milwaukee. All-Star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo did not play on the second night of the back-to-back because of right knee soreness.
The Bucks led by one at halftime and appeared ready to break the game open after starting the second half on a 19-2 run.
But Charlotte, which missed its first six shots from the field in the third quarter, stormed back to take the lead with 3:46 left in the game.
GRIZZLIES 115, CLIPPERS 112
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) – Tyreke Evans scored 30 points, Marc Gasol had 17 points and a season-high 15 rebounds and Memphis beat Los Angeles to snap a three-game losing streak.
The Clippers had the ball with a chance to tie in the closing 21 seconds, but a tough Memphis defense forced a bad pass from Lou Williams. Evans ran the ball down in the backcourt as the horn sounded.
Austin Rivers had 38 points, his second straight game setting a career high, while Williams finished with 36. But no other Clippers player reached double figures. DeAndre Jordan, the league’s leading rebounder, had 18 boards.
SPURS 108, KINGS 99
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – LaMarcus Aldridge had 29 points and 10 rebounds, and San Antonio bounced back from a disappointing loss to beat slumping Sacramento.
Pau Gasol added 14 points, 11 rebounds and a season-high 10 assists for San Antonio, which won without star forward Kawhi Leonard. Tony Parker had 10 points and six assists, and Manu Ginobili scored 15 as the Spurs extended their winning streak over the Kings to 11 games.
Former Kings player Rudy Gay scored seven of the Spurs’ first nine points in the fourth quarter when San Antonio went up by 14.
Buddy Hield had 24 points to pace Sacramento. Willie Cauley-Stein added 22 points and 11 rebounds, and Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 15 for the Kings, who were coming off back-to-back road wins over Brooklyn and Philadelphia.
It was a much-needed lift for the Spurs, who had a fourth-quarter meltdown while losing to Utah 100-89 on Thursday.
TRAIL BLAZERS 95, LAKERS 92
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Maurice Harkless completed a go-ahead three-point play with 21.4 seconds remaining and Portland ended a three-game losing streak by beating Los Angeles.
Harkless, who scored the final four points for the Blazers and finished with 22, made a jump shot through contact after Lonzo Ball hit a 3-pointer to tie it at 91 with 1:45 remaining. Shabazz Napier added 21 points and CJ McCollum had 17 for Portland, which played without injured star Damian Lillard.
Kyle Kuzma and Jordan Clarkson each scored 18 for the Lakers, who were missing ailing forward Brandon Ingram. Ball had 10 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists, and Josh Hart added 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope missed a 3 with seven seconds remaining for Los Angeles.
TIMBERWOLVES 115, SUNS 106
PHOENIX (AP) – Jimmy Butler scored 32 points to lead six Minnesota players in double figures, and the Timberwolves never trailed against Phoenix.
The Suns cut a 22-point deficit to two late in the third quarter but the Timberwolves used a 12-0 run to hold on.
Andrew Wiggins added 17 points and Karl-Anthony Towns had 16 points and 14 rebounds as Northwest Division-leading Minnesota improved to 20-13, its best 33-game start since opening 22-11 in 2004-05.
T.J. Warren scored 24 for the Suns in their ninth and probably final game before Devin Booker returns from injury.
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