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Best of NBA: Kristaps Porzingis erupts in Knicks' 3rd straight win

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Best of NBA: Kristaps Porzingis erupts in Knicks' 3rd straight win

NEW YORK -- Kristaps Porzingis scored a career-high 38 points and Kyle O'Quinn added 15 points and 12 rebounds to help the New York Knicks beat the Denver Nuggets 116-110 on Monday night.

Tim Hardaway Jr. scored all 13 of his points in the fourth quarter after the Knicks had blown all of their 23-point third-quarter lead.

Nikola Jokic led the Nuggets with 28 points and Jamal Murray scored 20.

The Knicks had taken their biggest lead of the game, 69-46, on Courtney Lee's layup with 10:38 left in the third quarter. However, the Nuggets responded by scoring the next 13 points to ignite a 27-2 run and they took their first lead, 73-71, on Wilson Chandler's free throws with 4:42 left in the third quarter.

The Knicks committed 10 turnovers during that six-minute stretch.

The game was tied 77-77 when Doug McDermott's 3-pointer put the Knicks back in front for good with 1:09 left in the third (see full recap).

Celtics top Spurs for 5th straight win
BOSTON -- Kyrie Irving scored 24 points, Jaylen Brown added 18 and Al Horford had 13 rebounds on Monday night to help the Celtics beat the San Antonio Spurs 108-94 and lead Boston to its fifth straight victory.

Irving scored 24 for the third straight game, rookie Jayson Tatum had 11 rebounds and Terry Rozier had 10 of his 12 points in the fourth quarter. Boston lost its first two games of the season on back-to-back nights -- and star free agent Gordon Hayward, too -- but have not lost since.

Reserves Brandon Paul had 18 points and Rudy Gay scored 14 for San Antonio, which remains without Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard. The Spurs lost on back-to-back nights and fell to 1-3 on a four-game road trip, leaving coach Gregg Popovich waiting for career victory No. 1,155, which would tie him with Phil Jackson at sixth on the NBA's all-time list.

It was the first game this season that LaMarcus Aldridge didn't lead San Antonio in scoring. He had 11 points.

Boston led 54-49 at halftime and scored 10 of the first 12 points in the third quarter -- eight from Irving on a pair of 3-pointers and a layup. The Celtics point guard was 10 for 15 shooting, including 3 for 6 from 3-point range, before sitting most of the fourth quarter while Boston nursed a double-digit lead (see full recap).

Timberwolves hang on in OT to beat Heat
MIAMI -- Jeff Teague scored 23 points, Andrew Wiggins scored 22 and the Minnesota Timberwolves scored the first six points of overtime before holding on to beat the Miami Heat 125-122 on Monday night.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 20 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for the Timberwolves, who got 16 from Jimmy Butler and 13 from Jamal Crawford.

Jimmy Butler scored 14, Jamal Crawford scored 13 and Towns grabbed 12 rebounds for the Timberwolves.

Dion Waiters tied a career-high by scoring 33 for Miami, 14 of those coming in the fourth quarter including a layup that sent the game to overtime. His 30-footer that would have tied the game as time expired bounced off the rim.

Kelly Olynyk scored 23 points and Goran Dragic added 18 for Miami -- which was again without center Hassan Whiteside, out for a fifth consecutive game with a bruised left knee. Bam Adebayo started again in his place and had the best game of his rookie season, finishing with 13 points and 13 rebounds (see full recap).

Rockets beat Warriors in battle of West's best

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USA Today Images

Rockets beat Warriors in battle of West's best

HOUSTON — Chris Paul scored 33 points and 11 rebounds, James Harden had 22 points and the Houston Rockets held off the Golden State Warriors 116-108 on Saturday night to snap their 14-game road winning streak.

Harden stepped back from Stephen Curry for a 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to make it 114-108 with 1:10 left. Harden then blocked Curry's 3-point attempt after a timeout, and Paul made two free throws with 28 seconds left.

Golden State lost away from home for the first time since Nov. 22. The Warriors had won seven straight in Houston.

Kevin Durant led Golden State with 26 points, Draymond Green had 21 and Curry added 19 on a night he went 5 of 15 on 3-point attempts.

The Warriors were wrapping up a five-game road trip and had won the first four games to tie a franchise record for consecutive road wins. But they struggled from the outset Saturday and trailed by double digits for most of the first half (see full recap).

Olynyk's free throw gives Heat win over Hornets
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Kelly Olynyk scored 14 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter, including a free throw with 0.2 seconds left, to help the Miami Heat erase a five-point deficit in the final 34 seconds and stun the Charlotte Hornets 106-105 on Saturday night.

Wayne Ellington had 26 points on six 3-pointers, Joe Johnson had 22 points and Olynyk was brilliant down the stretch.

Nic Batum scored a season-high 26 points and Kemba Walker had 22 for Charlotte, which had a two-game winning streak snapped.

Charlotte led 105-100 when Johnson got free for a dunk. The Hornets inbounded the ball to Batum, but Josh Richardson ripped it from his hands and passed to Johnson, who knocked down a 3-pointer from the wing to tie (see full recap).

Thunder score 148 points, keep Lebron short of 30,000 for career
CLEVELAND — LeBron James came up just short of 30,000 points.

Oklahoma City nearly got there, too.

Unable to stop Paul George, Russell Westbrook or Carmelo Anthony, the Cavaliers were embarrassed 148-124 on Saturday by the Thunder, who not only rolled to their fourth straight win but kept James shy of a historic milestone.

George scored 36 points, Westbrook had 23 and 20 assists and Anthony dropped a season-high 29 points as the Thunder tied the record for the most points given up by a Cleveland team in a regulation game. Philadelphia scored 148 on the Cavs back in 1972.

"I've never in my basketball life gave up 148 points, not even probably playing video games," James said. "They got everything that they wanted. Inside, outside, they had it moving." (see full recap).

Pelicans' stars all contribute in win over Grizzlies
NEW ORLEANS — Jrue Holiday scored 13 of his 27 points in the fourth quarter, DeMarcus Cousins had 24 points and 10 rebounds, and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Memphis Grizzlies 111-104 on Saturday night.

Anthony Davis had 21 points and 12 rebounds but did not score his first points of the second half until he dunked with 1:15 to go in the game, giving the Pelicans a 108-102 lead.

Darius Miller added 12 points in a reserve role for New Orleans, which never trailed but very nearly blew a 21-point lead.

Trailing by 15 at halftime, Memphis scored the first 13 points of the third quarter, part of a 16-2 run to open the half that trimmed New Orleans' lead to a single point with most of the third quarter remaining (see full recap).

Sixers buck trend in win over Milwaukee

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USA Today Images

Sixers buck trend in win over Milwaukee

BOX SCORE

The Sixers made it a perfect week Saturday with a 116-94 win over the Bucks, going 3-0 in games played since Monday.

Joel Embiid dominated with 29 points and nine rebounds as the Bucks fell short without Giannis Antetokounmpo (right knee soreness). JJ Redick (leg), Jerryd Bayless (wrist) and Malcolm Brogdon (personal reasons) also were sidelined.

The Sixers improved to 22-20, including victories in eight of their last 10 games. This stretch includes recent wins over the playoff-contending Bucks, Celtics and Raptors.

• T.J. McConnell had impressive looks attacking the basket, including a spin move to draw a three-point play. The backup point guard neared a double-double with 11 points and seven assists, a continuation of his solid contributions off the bench.

• Ben Simmons came close to a triple-double. He posted 16 points, eight rebounds and nine assists. Simmons mixed a jumper into his 8 for 13 shooting night.

• The Bucks starters scored all but 11 of their points. Khris Middleton recorded a 23-point, 14-rebound, 10-assist triple-double.

• The Sixers came close to a third-quarter letdown, an issue they’ve been focusing on shaking. They led the Bucks 70-59 two minutes into the quarter before the Bucks went on a 16-5 run over nearly six minutes. The Sixers committed seven of their 18 turnovers during that stretch. Embiid came up with five points, a block and a rebound in the closing three minutes of the third to help the Sixers reclaim control.

• Brett Brown went deep into the Sixers depth chart in the absences of Redick and Bayless. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (16 points, three rebounds) got the start at shooting guard while Justin Anderson (two points, three rebounds) and James Young (four points) got a bump in minutes.

Eagles fans represented when the fight song was played and booed loudly when Vikings fans were shown on the Jumbotron: