Collin Sexton followed up the best game of his career by totaling 25 points and a season-high nine assists, as the Cleveland Cavaliers took control in the third and beat the Brooklyn Nets.
Elsewhere, Luka Doncic’s 36 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds helped to push the Dallas Mavericks to a 122-117 result against the San Antonio Spurs.
The visiting Denver Nuggets beat the Phoenix Suns 130-126 in overtime and Kawhi Leonard scored 31 points and Paul George added 29 as the Los Angeles Clippers won their sixth straight contest.
Friday night’s NBA results
|Boston Celtics 110-122 Philadelphia 76ers|
|Chicago Bulls 123-110 Charlotte Hornets|
|Houston Rockets 103-102 Detriot Pistons|
|Orlando Magic 118-120 Indiana Pacers|
|Brooklyn Nets 113-125 Cleveland Cavaliers|
|Miami Heat 81-101 Toronto Raptors|
|Atlanta Hawks 116-98 Minnesota Timberwolves|
|Dallas Mavericks 122-117 San Antonio Spurs|
|Denver Nuggets 130-126 Phoenix Suns|
|Oklahoma City Thunder 106-120 LA Clippers|
|New York Knicks 94-103 Sacramento Kings|
Brooklyn Nets 113-125 Cleveland Cavaliers
Two nights after scoring a career-high 42 points in Cleveland’s wild 147-135 double-overtime win over the Nets, Sexton helped the Cavaliers get to secure third straight win.
He followed up the best game of his career by totaling 25 points and a season-high nine assists as the Cavaliers took control in the third quarter and posted a 125-113 victory over the visiting Nets.
Sexton notched up eight points in the decisive third when Cleveland dominated by outscoring the Nets 37-24 and forcing eight turnovers.
Kyrie Irving scored 38 points in his second game from a two-week absence, but it was not enough for the Nets, who rested Kevin Durant ahead of the back end of a back-to-back against Miami.
James Harden added 19 points and 11 assists for the Nets, who shot 48.3 percent but also misfired on 29 of 43 3-point tries.
Cleveland had held a 98-84 lead going into the fourth. Brooklyn cut the deficit to ten points five times in the fourth but each time Cleveland immediately scored.
Brooklyn’s last ten-point deficit was 111-101 with 4:37 remaining on two free throws by Irving.
However, Drummond hit a seven-footer in the lane on the next possession and following a missed 3-pointer by Harden, Sexton connected with Isaac Okoro for a layup that made it 115-102 with 3:30 left and essentially sealed the win.
Dallas Mavericks 122-117 San Antonio Spurs
Luka Doncic scored 36 points, dished out 11 assists and grabbed nine rebounds to pace a balanced Dallas attack as the visiting Mavericks held off the San Antonio Spurs 122-117.
The Mavericks took a 10-point lead to the fourth quarter, but San Antonio got within 113-112 after an 8-0 run that was capped by DeMar DeRozan’s free throw with 1:03 to play.
Doncic finally got Dallas back on track with a clutch jumper with 49.4 seconds left. After DeRozan misfired on a jumper, Jalen Brunson expanded the lead to 118-112 via a 3-pointer with 18.9 seconds left, and the Mavericks held on down the stretch.
Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. added 21 points apiece for Dallas. Brunson scored 16 and Trey Burke put up 13 points. DeRozan led the Spurs with 29 points despite 8-of-20 shooting, and LaMarcus Aldridge hit for 26. Keldon Johnson poured in 17 points and grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds
Denver Nuggets 130-126 Phoenix Suns
Nikola Jokic had 31 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, Gary Harris scored 19 points and the visiting Denver Nuggets beat the Phoenix Suns 130-126 in overtime.
Jamal Murray had 18 points and nine assists, Will Barton scored eight of his 17 points in overtime, Monte Morris also had 17 and Paul Millsap added 12 for Denver.
Michael Porter Jr. scored seven off the bench in his first game since Dec. 29, having been sidelined due to COVID-19 protocols.
Devin Booker scored 31 points, Deandre Ayton had 27 points and 13 rebounds, Mikal Bridges contributed 24 points and 10 rebounds and Chris Paul totaled 11 points and 15 assists for the Suns.
The Nuggets won for the fifth time in seven games while the Suns lost for the third time in four games.
Miami Heat 87-101 Toronto Raptors
Norman Powell scored 14 of his game-high 23 points in the first quarter and the Toronto Raptors went on to defeat the Miami Heat 101-81.
Powell, who got the start because Kyle Lowry did not play due to an infected toe, shot 10-for-18 from the field.
Pascal Siakam, who was listed as questionable for the game because of a groin injury, scored 15 points and grabbed 14 rebounds for Toronto.
The teams split two games at Toronto’s temporary home in Tampa, with the Heat winning 111-102 on Wednesday.
OG Anunoby added 21 points for the Raptors, who completed a five-game homestand with a 4-1 record. Fred VanVleet had 13 points and Terence Davis contributed 12 points off the bench.
Kendrick Nunn scored 22 points off the bench for Miami. Bam Adebayo had 14 points and eight rebounds, Goran Dragic scored 13 points and Duncan Robinson added 11 points.
The Heat are halfway through a four-game road trip.
Oklahoma City Thunder 106-120 LA Clippers
Kawhi Leonard scored 31 points and Paul George added 29 as the Los Angeles Clippers won their sixth straight contest with a 120-106 victory over the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder.
Leonard also had eight rebounds and three steals, while George collected seven rebounds and five assists. Serge Ibaka finished with 17 points, making seven of his eight field-goal attempts, and 11 rebounds and Nicolas Batum scored 14 points on 5-of-6 shooting for the Clippers.
Former Clipper Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 30 points and eight assists for Oklahoma City, which lost for the fourth time in five games. Luguentz Dort scored 14 of his 19 points in the second half.
George Hill chipped in 12 points, Mike Muscala contributed 11 points and Hamidou Diallo had 10. The Clippers roared to a big lead early. A 19-2 surge helped boost them to a 36-18 lead after one quarter.
The Thunder, who trailed by as much as 27 points at one point, cut the deficit to 85-75 late in the third quarter after a 3-pointer by Muscala but go no closer. The Clippers took a 91-78 advantage heading into the fourth quarter.
New York Knicks 94-103 Sacramento Kings
Tyrese Haliburton highlighted a late flurry with a 3-pointer Friday night as the Sacramento Kings outfinished the visiting New York Knicks for a 103-94 victory.
De’Aaron Fox led Sacramento with 22 points, including a dunk and two free throws during an 11-2 burst that turned a two-point game into a 100-89 Kings advantage with just 1:26 to play.
Julius Randle paced the Knicks, who were playing the second night of a back-to-back, with a game-high 26 points.
After Randle got New York within 89-87 with a pair of free throws with 4:30 remaining, Fox and Harrison Barnes dropped in a pair of foul shots apiece.
Haliburton then made it a seven-point run and a nine-point game with his clutch 3-pointer at the 2:35 mark.
Randle ended a 2 1/2-minute Knicks drought with a layup to trim the deficit to seven, but Fox’s dunk and an interior hoop by Richaun Holmes completed the 11-2 run that extended the lead to double digits.
Barnes finished with 21 points, while Haliburton had 16 points, one off his season best, to go with four blocks for the Kings, who snapped a four-game losing streak.