Denver beats Lakers; James tops Jordan on career points list
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Will Barton scored 23 points, Gary Harris added 19 and the Denver Nuggets snapped their three-game losing streak with a 115-99 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night despite LeBron James’ move into fourth place on the NBA’s career scoring list.
James scored 31 points and surpassed Michael Jordan’s 32,292 career points on a driving layup during the second quarter. His Lakers erased most an early 23-point deficit before fading in the fourth quarter of their fourth consecutive loss.
Denver (43-21) blew all but two points of its huge early lead, but Harris and Nikola Jokic contributed key baskets down the stretch of the Nuggets’ first win of March.
Jamal Murray scored 19 points and Jokic had 12 points, 17 rebounds and eight assists for the Nuggets, who had lost four straight to the Lakers on the road despite their growth into an elite NBA team during that time period.
JaVale McGee added 16 points for the Lakers, who played without injured starters Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball.
James now trails only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387 points), Karl Malone (36,928) and Kobe Bryant (33,643).
HEAT 91, HORNETS 84
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kelly Olynyk had 22 points and 11 rebounds, Hassan Whiteside added 18 points and 15 rebounds off the bench and Miami beat Charlotte to break a tie for the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference.
Olynyk was 8 of 14 from the field, including 5 of 7 from beyond the 3-point arc as Miami won its third straight game.
Dwyane Wade had a rough night shooting, going 4 of 15 from the field and missed both free-throw attempts. He finished with eight points and six assists. After the game, Charlotte’s Kemba Walker exchanged jerseys with Wade at midcourt.
Walker and Frank Kaminsky each scored 20 points for Charlotte. Cody Zeller finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
BULLS 108, 76ERS 107
CHICAGO (AP) — Zach LaVine scored 39 points and hit the go-ahead layup in the closing seconds to lead Chicago to wild win over Philadelphia.
LaVine scored 13 in the fourth quarter as the Bulls wiped out a 10-point deficit in a game that featured two endings.
The Bulls trailed 107-106 with 4.8 seconds remaining when LaVine inbounded to Lopez and got fouled as he cut past Mike Scott for the go-ahead layup with 1.6 seconds remaining.
LaVine missed the free throw, but the Bulls came away with the win after one more twist. He broke up Ben Simmons’ inbounds pass to Butler underneath the 76ers’ basket. Both teams left the court and fans started to file out of the arena. The problem was, the horn sounded before anyone touched the ball.
After a review, the referees put 0.5 seconds back on the clock. But with one more chance, Philadelphia came up short when the inbounds pass skipped off Butler’s hands.
Butler scored 22 points in his second game against his former team. Simmons had 18 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists for the Sixers, who are 4-3 since the All-Star break, with All-Star center Joel Embiid sidelined by a sore left knee.
SUNS 107, KNICKS 96
PHOENIX (AP) — Devin Booker scored a season-high 41 points and Phoenix rolled to its fourth victory in five games.
Booker made 14 of 23 shots, including six of 10 3-pointers, and the Suns (15-51) took over after a slow start in a matchup of the teams with the NBA’s worst records.
Kelly Oubre Jr. added 18 points and Tyler Johnson 14 for the Suns, who have won three straight.
DeAndre Jordan led the Knicks with 17 points, and Noah Vonleh, Damyean Dotson and Dennis Smith Jr. added 15 each.
WIZARDS 132, MAVERICKS 123
WASHINGTON (AP) — Bradley Beal dunked over 7-foot-2 Salah Mejri and then stared him down in the most dramatic part of a 30-point performance as Washington beat Dallas.
Beal added eight assists and seven rebounds as Washington beat Dallas at home after losing nine in a row when hosting the Mavericks.
Trevor Ariza scored 22 and Jabari Parker 20 for the Wizards.
Rookie Luka Doncic had 31 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists for the Mavs. Dwight Powell made 11 of 12 shots and scored a career-high 26 points, while contributing 10 rebounds.
PISTONS 131, TIMBERWOLVES 114
DETROIT (AP) — Andre Drummond had 31 points and 15 rebounds and surging Detroit beat Minnesota.
Drummond posted his 16th straight double-double — the second-longest streak in franchise history. He set the record with 18 last season.
Luke Kennard added 21 points for the Pistons (32-31), who moved above .500 for the first time since they got to 15-14 by beating the Timberwolves in overtime on Dec. 19. Detroit has won 10 of 12, including six straight at home.
Minnesota (30-35) has lost four of five. Karl-Anthony Towns scored 24 points before fouling out.
SPURS 111, HAWKS 104
ATLANTA (AP) — LaMarcus Aldridge scored 32 points and San Antonio pulled away from Atlanta in the closing minutes for its fourth straight victory.
Derrick White scored seven straights points, putting San Antonio ahead to stay with a 3-pointer before hitting two straight shots in the lane. He finished with 18 points and nine assists.
Trae Young led the Hawks with 24 points but made only eight of 24 shots, going 1 for 7 from beyond the arc. John Collins returned to the Hawks lineup after missing three games with flu-like symptoms. He had 18 points and 10 rebounds in 25 minutes.
NETS 113, CAVALIERS 107
NEW YORK (AP) — Spencer Dinwiddie scored 12 of his 28 points in the fourth quarter and Brooklyn beat Cleveland for its second straight win.
D’Angelo Russell added 25 points for the Nets.
Kevin Love had 24 points and 16 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who had won four of six since that loss to the Nets in the final game before the All-Star break. David Nwaba added 22 points.
JAZZ 114, PELICANS 104
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Derrick Favors scored 25 points, Rudy Gobert added 22 points and 13 rebounds, and Utah beat New Orleans for the second time this season
Donovan Mitchell had 22 points, and Joe Ingles had 10 points and 10 assists for the Jazz, who exacted a measure of revenge for the Pelicans’ surprising comeback victory in Utah on Monday night.
Julius Randle scored 23 points for the Pelicans, who had won their previous three games — all on the road — before seeing their streak end in their return home. Anthony Davis scored 16 points and blocked two shots in 21 minutes. Jrue Holiday also scored 16.
CELTICS 111, KINGS 109
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gordon Hayward made up for a costly foul by hitting a tiebreaking shot with 2 seconds to play that helped Boston overcome the absence of injured star Kyrie Irving in a win over Sacramento.
Jayson Tatum led Boston with 24 points, Al Horford had 21 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists, and Hayward finished with 12 points. Boston had lost five of six before beginning this trip.
Harrison Barnes scored 24 points and Buddy Hield added 23 for the Kings, who have lost four of five.