NBA: Lakers, 76ers' winning streaks snapped by Spurs, Nets; Trail Blazers rout Timberwolves
The 76ers came in at 7-1 and off their best performance of the season, when they shot an NBA season-high 61.7% in a 141-136 victory over Washington
Brooklyn: Joe Harris scored a season-high 28 points and the Nets shook off the absence of their two superstars - Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant - to beat the NBA's leading team Philadelphia 76ers 122-109 on Thursday night.
Brooklyn jumped out quickly and had a double-digit lead for much of the second half while winning its second straight, both without Durant.
“Obviously it’s a totally different team when those guys are out here,” guard Caris LeVert said, “but I think we’ve done a great job of having a next-man-up mentality, guys stepping into those roles and fulfilling what we need as a team.”
LeVert had 22 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds, and Jarrett Allen added 15 points and 11 boards for the Nets.
Irving was ruled out Thursday afternoon for personal reasons, though coach Steve Nash said before and after the game he hadn't spoken to his point guard and didn't know the reason for his absence, calling it a personal matter. LeVert said Irving texted his teammates before the game and they supported his absence. The Nets said Irving would not travel with the team to Memphis on Thursday night.
The Nets already knew they’d be without Durant for a second consecutive game because of the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Nash said Durant would be able to return Sunday if he continues to test negative for the coronavirus until then.
The 76ers came in at 7-1 and off their best performance of the season, when they shot an NBA season-high 61.7% in a 141-136 victory over Washington on Wednesday.
But they couldn't duplicate that, with Joel Embiid starting slowly before finishing with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Shake Milton had a season-high 24 points in his first start of the season in place of Seth Curry, who had a sore left ankle, but Ben Simmons was limited to 11 points, four rebounds and two assists.
Spurs snap Lakers 4-game winning streak
The Lakers and Spurs locked arms during the national anthem before their game. pic.twitter.com/xVhUO2kDxu
— NBA TV (@NBATV) January 8, 2021
Los Angeles: A trip to Los Angeles proved to be just what the San Antonio Spurs needed to snap out of an early-season slump.
Two nights after beating the Clippers to snap a four-game losing streak, the Spurs picked up another win at Staples Center on Thursday, this time defeating the Los Angeles Lakers 118-109.
LaMarcus Aldridge led San Antonio with a season-high 28 points and was one of five in double figures. Demar DeRozan added 19 points and eight assists. The Spurs were 16 of 35 on 3-pointers after making 20 from beyond the arc against the Clippers.
LeBron James scored 27 points and Anthony Davis added 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who had their four-game winning streak snapped.
San Antonio scored the first nine points and led the entire way. Lonnie Walker IV's jumper gave the Spurs a 84-74 lead in the third quarter before the Lakers went on a 15-5 run to tie it. Montrezl Harrell's putback off a Talen Horton-Tucker miss evened it at 89 with 1:04 remaining before the Spurs regained control.
The Spurs largest advantage was 15 points late in the first quarter and they were up 65-56 at halftime.
Lillard scores 39 as Blazers win 135-117
Damian Lillard had 39 points, including seven 3-pointers, and the Portland Trail Blazers handed the Minnesota Timberwolves their sixth straight loss with a 135-117 victory Thursday night.
CJ McCollum added 20 points for the Blazers, who led by 33 in the second half. Jusuf Nurkic had 17 points and seven rebounds before Portland rested its starters in the fourth quarter.
D'Angelo Russell and Anthony Edwards each scored 26 points for the Timberwolves (2-6), who continue to struggle without Karl-Anthony Towns as he recovers from a dislocated left wrist. He’s missed six games, coinciding with Minnesota's losing streak.
Timberwolves coach Ryan Saunders said help might be on the way soon because Towns has been making progress. “Once we get back to Minnesota, we’ll evaluate more, and get him around the team and see where he is at that point,” Saunders said.
Doncic nets 38 in near triple-double, Mavs top Nuggets in OT
The Joker forces OT! pic.twitter.com/6ImV50lfFF
— NBA TV (@NBATV) January 8, 2021
Luka (38 PTS, 13 AST, 9 REB) came up clutch in Dallas’ OT win! pic.twitter.com/NXLynp17cC
— NBA TV (@NBATV) January 8, 2021
Luka Doncic came within one rebound of his second straight triple-double, finishing with 38 points and 13 assists to lead the Dallas Mavericks over the Denver Nuggets 124-117 in overtime Thursday night.
Doncic sat out Sunday’s loss to Chicago and responded with his first triple-double of the season against Houston on Monday. He followed that up with a season high in points.
Nikola Jokic scored 20 of his 38 points after halftime and grabbed 11 rebounds for Denver. Jamal Murray added 21 points and nine assists.
Josh Richardson scored 14 points, including five straight in overtime to give the Mavericks the lead for good. His 3-pointer from the wing with 1:25 left put Dallas ahead 119-114. Denver got within three on a 3-pointer from Jokic, but Doncic scored four straight to ice it for the Mavericks.
Dallas rallied from four down to take a 101-97 lead on Maxi Kleber’s 3-pointer, his first points of the night, but Jokic scored the next five to put Denver ahead.
Kleber’s 3-pointer put Dallas up 109-107 with 2.4 seconds left, but Jokic capped a 17-point fourth quarter with an 18-foot jumper at the horn to send the game to overtime.
Drummond's double-double leads Cavs past Grizzlies
Andre Drummond had 22 points and 15 rebounds, Larry Nance Jr. added 18 points on 7-for-7 shooting from the field and the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Memphis Grizzlies 94-90 on Thursday night.
Cedi Osman scored 16 points as Cleveland snapped a two-game skid. JaVale McGee added 13 points.
Jonas Valanciunas led Memphis with 17 points and 10 rebounds, while Brandon Clarke had 14 points. Dillon Brooks scored 11 but was 4 of 13 from the field.
The Cavaliers were minus leading scorer Collin Sexton, who sat out with a left ankle sprain. That left Cleveland trying to pick up Sexton’s missing 25.1 points a game.
In the aftermath of Wednesday’s chaos at the U.S. Capitol, and to protest racial and social injustice, the teams paused at the opening tip, went to the sideline, locked arms and took a knee. They were joined by coaches, staff and reserves covering the entire sideline from end line to end line. The three officials knelt at midcourt behind the line of players.
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It was the 13th NBA game called off since 10 January because of coronavirus issues.
Philadelphia 76ers' Seth Curry spent the first quarter of the game against Brooklyn Nets on the bench before the team was informed that the player has tested positive for COVID-19, reports said.
It was obvious the end was nearing Wednesday, when the Rockets told Harden they didn't want him at practice after his inflammatory comments about the team.