Hawks win fifth straight, beat Nets despite Durant’s 55
ATLANTA (AP) — Trae Young scored 36 points, including nine in the final minute, and the streaking Atlanta Hawks overcame Kevin Durant’s career-high 55 points to hold off the Brooklyn Nets 122-115 on Saturday night for their fifth consecutive win.
Atlanta (41-37) moved into eighth place in the Eastern Conference, a game ahead of Brooklyn (40-38) and Charlotte.
Young’s 3-pointer gave Atlanta a 116-108 lead. Durant reached his career scoring high with his layup with 19 seconds remaining.
The Hawks, attempting to regain the late-season momentum which pushed them to the last year’s Eastern Conference finals, have won 10 of 13.
Durant set another career high by making eight 3-pointers.
The Nets’ second consecutive loss left them locked into the play-in tournament, eliminating their slim hopes of moving up to sixth in the conference.
WARRIORS 111, JAZZ 107
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Klay Thompson scored 36 points and Golden State erased a 16-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat Utah.
Jordan Poole added 31 and Andrew Wiggins had 17 as the Warriors clinched a playoff spot and snapped a four-game losing streak. At 49-29, they hold a one-game lead over the Dallas Mavericks for the third seed in the Western Conference. Utah is tied with Denver for the fifth spot.
Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley each had 26 for Utah. It was an all-too-familiar storyline for the Jazz, who blew a 25-point lead in a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday. Utah has lost 15 games this season in which it held double-digit leads.
HEAT 127, BULLS 109
CHICAGO (AP) — Jimmy Butler scored 22 points, Kyle Lowry and Tyler Herro added 19 apiece and Eastern Conference-leading Miami beat Chicago.
Bam Adebayo scored 16, and the hot-shooting Heat (50-28) reached the 50-win mark for the first time since the 2013-14 season.
Miami also increased its lead over second-place Milwaukee to 1 1/2 games and moved within a win of securing home-court advantage in Round 1 of the postseason. If the Heat go 3-1 the rest of the way, they’ll clinch the top seed in the East.
Miami made it look easy in this one, building a nine-point halftime lead and breaking it open in the third quarter. The Heat shot 53.7% in the game and made 17 of 34 3-pointers.
Butler, the former Bull, had seven rebounds and six assists. Herro matched a season high by nailing 6 of 7 3s, including three in the third.
Zach LaVine led Chicago with 33 points. DeMar DeRozan finished with 26, though he shot 6 of 18, and the sixth-place Bulls fell a half-game behind Toronto with four to play.
76ERS 144, HORNETS 114
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Joel Embiid had 29 points, 14 rebounds and six assists, and Philadelphia snapped a three-game losing streak.
Philadelphia tied its franchise record of 21 3-pointers, last set on March 1, 2020.
Tobias Harris added 23 points and had a season-high five three-pointers as the Sixers placed seven players in double figures and were able to play their bench for the majority of the fourth quarter.
James Harden had 12 points and 13 assists for Philadelphia.
Miles Bridges had 20 points for Charlotte, who has already wrapped up a berth in the East’s play-in tournament. PJ Washington had 14 points while LaMelo Ball added 13 for the Hornets.
CAVALIERS 119, KNICKS 101
NEW YORK (AP) — Darius Garland had 24 points and 13 assists to lead Cleveland over New York.
Garland led seven Cavaliers in double figures as Cleveland snapped a two-game losing streak.
Caris LeVert finished with 19 points. Moses Brown and Isaac Okoro each added 16. Brown also had 13 rebounds. Kevin Love had 15 off the bench. Cedi Osman and Lauri Markkanen both added 10 for Cleveland.
After a four-game winning streak, New York has lost two straight.
Obi Toppin scored a career-high 20 points. Evan Fournier had 19. Immanuel Quickley scored 17 off the bench. RJ Barrett finished with 12, and Alec Burks had 11 for New York.