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NBA Daily Roundup
An NBA daily recap of yesterday's games, all on one page. Bookmark this NBA game roundup page this page. Hit it daily. Also, read nba game previews and daily stat leaders. And catch NBA video highlights.
NBA DAILY FOR THU, DEC. 12
Recaps of NBA games played Wednesday
Russell Westbrook, Thunder top Grizzlies for 12th win in last 13 games
The AP reports: MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Russell Westbrook is putting to rest any doubts he has recovered from the knee injury that forced him to miss the first two games of the season.
Westbrook scored 27 points and added nine assists to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 116-100 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night.
Westbrook's performance against the Grizzlies followed double-doubles Tuesday night in a win over Atlanta (14 points, 11 assists) and Sunday in a victory over Indiana (26 points, 13 assists).
"I'm great, I feel good," said Westbrook, who was sidelined by a lateral meniscus tear to start the year. "I'm taking it one day at a time and I'm taking care of my body, which is most important. I'm trying to get us wins."
Kevin Durant, the NBA's leading scorer, added 18 points and six rebounds. Reserve guard Jeremy Lamb scored a career-high 18 points to help the Thunder to their fourth straight win and 12th in 13 games. Neither Westbrook nor Durant played in the fourth quarter, when the Thunder maintained a double-digit lead.
Nelson lifts Magic over Bobcats 92-83
The AP reports: CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Magic coach Jacque Vaughn had been eagerly awaiting the return of Nikola Vucevic to his starting lineup.
The 7-foot center showed why Wednesday night.
Vucevic had a double-double in the first half after missing the last four games with a sprained left ankle, Jameer Nelson had 12 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter and the Orlando Magic snapped a six-game losing streak with a 92-83 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats.
Glen Davis added 17 points and 12 rebounds and Arron Afflalo chipped in with 16 points... Jefferson led Charlotte with 10 points and 11 rebounds.
Walker, who had 31 points against Stephen Curry on Monday night, was held to 10 points on 4-of-18 shooting.
Doc Rivers enjoys successful return to Boston
The AP reports: BOSTON -- Doc Rivers picked up another win in Boston.
The coach who led the Celtics to the 2008 NBA title returned for the first time with the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday night and beat Boston 96-88. Jamal Crawford scored 21 points, hitting a pair of 3-pointers 23 seconds apart to help the Clippers pull away in the final three minutes. "It was just a really nice day," Rivers said, choking back tears in his postgame news conference. "This is, it's just such a classy place here. ... They cheer for their teams and they love their athletes. The best decision I ever made was 10 years ago, when I decided to come."
Chris Paul had 22 points, nine assists and seven rebounds, and Blake Griffin scored 18 points for the Clippers, who won for the seventh time in 10 games. Reunion week resumes for Rivers on Thursday, when he faces former Celtics Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett -- now with the Brooklyn Nets... Jeff Green scored 29 points against his former coach, who was traded to Los Angeles this past summer for a first-round draft pick. Jordan Crawford had 20 points and nine assists, and Brandon Bass had 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Celtics, who lost their second in a row.
Duncan, Parker lead Spurs' 109-77 rout of Bucks
The AP reports: MILWAUKEE -- With Tim Duncan rediscovering his shot at the same time the Bucks collectively lost theirs, the result was predictable.
Duncan had 21 points and 16 rebounds while playing just 24 minutes -- single-handedly outscoring the Bucks starters -- and Tony Parker added 15 points in the San Antonio Spurs' 109-77 rout of Milwaukee on Wednesday night.
"I made some early and it helps," said Duncan, who hit 9 of 12 shots in earning his 770th double-double, the most among active players. "My shot's starting to come around a little bit. The first 20 games it hadn't been there, so I hope that it stays with me."
Milwaukee starters Khris Middleton, Ekpe Udoh, John Henson, O.J. Mayo and Brandon Knight combined for 19 points on 7-for-28 shooting. Forward Ersan Ilyasova, who logged a team-high 38 minutes, made just 3 of 16 shots.
Wolves rally from 19 down to beat 76ers 106-99
The AP reports: MINNEAPOLIS -- Down 19 at home to the struggling Philadelphia 76ers, the Minnesota Timberwolves' season had reached a bit of crossroads as the second quarter opened.
With a brutal trip awaiting, the Wolves simply couldn't afford to drop this one. So they rolled up their sleeves and started chipping away, and the young Sixers let them right back in it.
Kevin Love had 26 points, 15 rebounds and five assists and the Timberwolves got solid contributions from their beleaguered bench to beat the 76ers 106-99 on Wednesday night.
"It took us a long time to get into it," coach Rick Adelman said. "But then into the second quarter, into the second half, we just kind of gradually got a rhythm going and took control and they stopped."
Ricky Rubio had 21 points, seven assists and five rebounds, Nikola Pekovic added 20 points and 10 rebounds, and Robbie Hummel hit a couple of big shots for the Wolves in the fourth quarter.
Pelicans hold off Pistons, 111-106 in OT
The AP reports: NEW ORLEANS -- It's a good thing for the New Orleans Pelicans that Ryan Anderson doesn't let an off night stop him from unleashing long-range shots with the game on the line.
Anderson shook off some unusually poor shooting and hit two clutch 3-pointers in overtime that carried the New Orleans Pelicans to a 111-106 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night... Jason Smith showed he is getting increasingly comfortable at center after spending much of his early pro career at power forward. The 7-footer never backed down against the size and strength Detroit had underneath with Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond.
Smith scored 22 points and grabbed a career-high 16 rebounds for the Pelicans, who snapped a two-game skid while handing Detroit its third straight loss.
Knicks pull out win over Bulls after blowing 23-point lead
The AP reports: NEW YORK -- The huge lead was gone, and the New York Knicks were in danger of a loss that would have hurt far more than their two straight blowouts.
"From a mental standpoint, if this game would have got away from us, ain't no telling what would have happened," Carmelo Anthony said.
It didn't, thanks to Amar'e Stoudemire's biggest moment of the season. Anthony had 30 points and 10 rebounds, Stoudemire made the tiebreaking jumper with 2:35 left, and New York pulled out an 83-78 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday night after blowing a 23-point lead.
Stoudemire finished with 14 points and nine rebounds for the Knicks, who ended a two-game losing streak but made it harder on themselves than necessary with some sloppy second-half offense.
Jefferson and Jazz roll past Kings 122-101
The AP reports: SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- For one night at least, the Utah Jazz bore no resemblance to a team with the NBA's worst record.
Richard Jefferson scored 20 points and the Jazz had five players in double figures to halt a four-game skid, defeating the Sacramento Kings 122-101 Wednesday night for their largest margin of victory this season.
The Jazz (5-20), who had never led by more than 19 points this season, never trailed and were ahead by 24 after three quarters and stretched the lead to 28 in the fourth. They also established a season-high with 35 assists and had a season-low six turnovers against a Kings team playing without the three players it acquired from Toronto in a seven-player trade on Monday... Favors had 17 points, seven rebounds and three blocks for Utah, which shot 54 percent and scored over 100 points for only the sixth time this season. The Jazz were 13 of 23 from 3-point range and looked good at times on the defensive end, blocking eight shots.
Alec Burks had 15 points for Utah and rookie point guard Trey Burke contributed 11 points and nine assists. Jeremy Evans also had 11 points and Williams added eight points and five assists.
Curry scores 16 in 4th period to power Warriors' rally over Mavs
The AP reports: OAKLAND, Calif. -- Stephen Curry erased a forgettable first half for the Golden State Warriors with a fourth quarter to remember.
Curry made a pull-up jumper with 3 seconds remaining to cap a sensational finishing stretch, rallying the Warriors from 18 points down to beat the Dallas Mavericks 95-93 on Wednesday night... Curry scored 16 of his 33 points in the final period. He finished with 10 assists, four rebounds and another big shot in a young career already full of them... Harrison Barnes scored 17 points, David Lee added 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Andrew Bogut grabbed a season-high 18 rebounds to help the Warriors overcome 18 turnovers and a sloppy start.
Monta Ellis and Dirk Nowitzki each scored 21 points, and Jose Calderon had 18 for the Mavericks, who had no timeouts left and were forced to heave a desperation shot at the buzzer. Dallas finished 2-2 on its road trip because it couldn't corral Curry when it mattered most.
NBA DAILY FOR WED, DEC. 11
Recaps of NBA games played Tuesday
Pacers rally in second half to top Heat in clash of East's best
The AP reports: INDIANAPOLIS -- Roy Hibbert threw all the inside body jabs Tuesday night. Paul George finished it off with the knockout blow.
Together, the Pacers' devastating one-two scoring punch did it again to the champs. Hibbert finished with 24 points, George made two big 3-pointers during a 15-point second half scoring spree and Indiana rallied from a seven-point halftime deficit to take Round 1 against Miami 90-84.
"It was fun, a real intense game," George said. "Both teams were playing at a high level. You could see an urgency to win this game tonight." ... Hibbert dominated the middle, scoring nine of Indiana's first 11 points and making a season-high 10 baskets -- most from point-blank range -- despite playing in the second half with cotton in his nose. David West added 17 points, nine rebounds and four assists including a left-handed 4-foot runner that gave Indiana an 88-81 lead with 38.9 seconds to go.
Kyrie Irving, Jarrett Jack lead Cavaliers past struggling Knicks
The AP reports: CLEVELAND -- His arms folded across his chest, New York Knicks coach Mike Woodson watched helplessly as three Cleveland players streaked past him on the way to an uncontested layup.
Woodson couldn't stop the Cavaliers.
Right now, he can't do much about his sinking Knicks either. Kyrie Irving had 37 points and 11 assists and Jarrett Jack added 17 points, leading the Cavs to a 109-94 victory over the hard-to-figure Knicks on Tuesday night.
Fresh off an embarrassing 41-point loss at home to Boston on Sunday, New York dropped to 5-15 and made Woodson's future even more uncertain. The Knicks have lost 11 of 13... Anthony scored 29 points and Amar'e Stoudemire had 15 for the Knicks, who erased an early 18-point deficit, gave it all back, fell behind by 19 and weren't aggressive.
Ginobili leads Spurs past Raptors, 116-103
The AP reports: TORONTO -- Tony Parker praised "the usual guys" on San Antonio's bench for their role in beating the Toronto Raptors, then singled out Australian big man Aron Baynes for special attention.
Baynes scored a career-high 14 points, Manu Ginobili had 16 and the Spurs beat the Raptors 116-103 on Tuesday night.
Jeff Ayers made the first start of his Spurs career in place of injured center Tiago Splitter, but it was Baynes whose contribution proved most vital to San Antonio's sixth straight victory against Toronto... Baynes had scored just 17 points on the season coming into Tuesday's game, but blew past that mark by shooting 7 for 9 from the field and matching his season high with six rebounds... DeMar DeRozan scored 19 points and Amir Johnson had 19 points and nine rebounds for the Raptors, who lost for the sixth time in seven games. Terrence Ross scored 14 points in his first start of the season, Jonas Valanciunas also had 14 and Kyle Lowry had 11.
Kevin Durant lifts Thunder to 11th win in last 12 games
The AP reports: ATLANTA -- Kevin Durant scored 30 points. As usual, there was so much more to his performance.
Dominating at both ends of the court, Durant led the Oklahoma City Thunder to their 11th win in 12 games, holding off the Atlanta Hawks 101-92 Tuesday night.
Shelvin Mack scored a career-high 17 points off the bench to lead an Atlanta comeback that had the sparse crowd roaring.
The Thunder closed it out at the end,
"They revved up their intensity on the defensive end, their physicality," Durant said. "We matched their intensity and were able to take that punch and give a bigger punch back on the defensive end."
Durant knocked down 9 of 21 from the field and 11 of 15 free throws. He also had 10 rebounds, five assists, two blocks and a steal, helping limit Atlanta to just 36 percent shooting.
Nets' Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce earn win against former team
The AP reports: NEW YORK -- For Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, seeing Deron Williams back far outweighed seeing the Celtics again.
Williams scored a season-high 25 points in his return to the lineup, Brook Lopez added 24, and the Brooklyn Nets beat Boston 104-96 Tuesday night in the first matchup for Pierce and Garnett against their former team.
"D-Will set the tone for how we were going to play tonight," Garnett said. Garnett had 11 points, just his third time in double figures this season, and grabbed nine rebounds. Pierce finished with four points and seven rebounds in his first appearance off the bench in six years after making a quick recovery from a broken right hand.
But the key was Williams, who had missed nine straight games and 11 overall with a sprained left ankle, and hadn't been sharp in the games in which he did appear.
Timberwolves beat Pistons 121-94
The AP reports: AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- The Detroit Pistons are building their franchise around a talented frontcourt.
On Tuesday night, the Minnesota Timberwolves gave them some tips on how that's done.
Kevin Love had 26 points and 16 rebounds, while Corey Brewer and Nikola Pekovic combined for 29 points as the Timberwolves routed the Pistons 121-94. The Timberwolves didn't dominate inside, matching Detroit's 44 points in the paint, but the Pistons struggle to win games if they don't have a major advantage in the post... Brandon Jennings had 20 points for Detroit, but Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond were held to a combined total of 18 points and 10 rebounds.
"They had won four of their last five games, so we knew we had to jump on them early and not let up," Love said. "We had a big run and then kept the game in double digits. That really shows our leadership and maturity throughout our lineup."
John Henson, Bucks top Bulls in matchup of injury-riddled teams
The AP reports: CHICAGO -- John Henson cracked a smile as he headed down the court after his desperate turnaround splashed through the net.
It was that kind of night for Milwaukee.
Henson had 25 points, 14 rebounds and six blocked shots, and the Bucks beat the Chicago Bulls 78-74 on Tuesday in a matchup of slumping teams racked by injuries. "We just kept fighting," Henson said. "Man, we just kept fighting. As a young team, a scrappy team out here, that's what we got to do."
Brandon Knight added 19 points and 10 boards for Milwaukee, which had dropped three of four. O.J. Mayo was just 2 for 12 from the field, but had seven assists and made a couple of big plays in the fourth quarter... Mike Dunleavy scored 18 of his 24 points in the second quarter, but the Bulls struggled on offense in the latter part of their fourth loss in five games. Carlos Boozer, the only starter from the season opener at Miami, had 21 points and 12 rebounds.
Kobe Bryant leads Lakers with 20 points but Suns hold on for win
The AP reports: LOS ANGELES -- Kobe Bryant is swiftly regaining his confidence and timing. His conditioning improves daily, and he's already leading the Los Angeles Lakers in scoring again.
Yet thanks to Goran Dragic and the exciting Phoenix Suns, Kobe still doesn't have a victory.
Dragic scored 12 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter, and the Suns beat the Lakers 114-108 on Tuesday night, dropping Bryant to 0-2 in his comeback. Bryant scored 20 points while playing 29 mostly sharp minutes in his second game back from nearly eight months out with a torn Achilles tendon. He led a fourth-quarter rally by the Lakers, but they only got within four points with three minutes left before Phoenix held on... Marcus Morris scored 22 points, and Eric Bledsoe had 18 points and nine assists for the surprising Suns, who never trailed after the opening minutes. Phoenix held off the Lakers with superb fourth-quarter play from both Morris brothers, who scored nine points apiece down the stretch. Markieff Morris finished with 15 points.
NBA DAILY FOR TUE, DEC. 10
Recaps of NBA games played Monday
DeMarcus Cousins scores 32 as Kings handle Mavericks
The AP reports: SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Rudy Gay watched from a sky box seat as his new Sacramento teammates easily handled the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night.
The short-handed Kings looked formidable against the Mavericks.
DeMarcus Cousins had 32 points and 19 rebounds, and Derrick Williams scored a career-high 31 to pace the Kings to a 112-97 victory over Dallas. Earlier in the day, the Kings completed a seven-player deal with Toronto that brought them Gay, Aaron Gray and Quincy Acy. Greivis Vasquez, Patrick Patterson, John Salmons and Chuck Hayes went to the Raptors... Monta Ellis had 21 points for the Mavericks, who had won three straight, including the last two on the road. The loss also snapped a five-game win streak against the Kings. Dallas had won 15 of the previous 16 meetings and was 23-3 against the Kings dating to April 4, 2006.
Dirk Nowitzki had 18 points, Jose Calderon scored 11 and Shane Larkin had 10 for Dallas. Coming off an impressive win Saturday at Portland, the Mavericks shot 40 percent and were 5 of 27 on 3-pointers.
Bobcats hold off Warriors despite Stephen Curry's 43
The AP reports: CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Kemba Walker loves a good challenge.
So when Stephen Curry started lighting it up Monday night in his homecoming game, Walker decided it was time to match him.
The other eight players might as well have been on the bench watching in the final few minutes, when Walker scored Charlotte's final 15 points to lead the Bobcats to a 115-111 victory over Curry and the Golden State Warriors.
Walker finished with 31 points -- 27 in the second half -- while battling neck and neck with Curry, who finished with a season-high 43 points, 32 of them coming in the second half including 19 in the final quarter... Henderson had 24 points and Josh McRoberts had 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Bobcats (10-11), who won their second straight game.
Walker finished 10 of 18 from the field.
Blake Griffin leads short-handed Clippers by Sixers
The AP reports: PHILADELPHIA -- Lob City is undergoing renovations.
For the Los Angeles Clippers, it's about half-court offense and defense to be successful these days.
Especially being so short-handed. Blake Griffin scored 26 points, Chris Paul added 25 points and 13 assists, and the depleted Clippers defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 94-83 Monday night.
DeAndre Jordan had 11 points and a season-high 21 rebounds, and Jared Dudley scored 10 points for the Clippers, who won their second straight. The Clippers are 2-1 on a season-high tying seven-game road trip... The Sixers were not at full strength, either, missing rookie point guard Michael Carter-Williams for the third consecutive game.
Carter-Williams was released from Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania on Sunday after a three-night stay because of a skin infection that caused soreness in his right knee.
Evan Turner scored 25 points and Thaddeus Young added 16 points and 11 rebounds for the Sixers, who struggled once again without their floor leader. The Sixers are 1-6 without Carter-Williams this season.
Kenneth Faried has key play as Nuggets escape Wizards
The AP reports: WASHINGTON -- To prepare for the playoffs, Denver coach Brian Shaw said he wants his high-scoring team to learn to win tough games.
There was no better training ground for bump-and-grind basketball than Monday's 75-74 victory over the Washington Wizards.
Wilson Chandler scored 17 points, Nate Robinson added 16, and Kenneth Faried had a key block and transition dunk with 33 seconds left.
Washington had three possessions after Faried put Denver ahead, but John Wall missed a layup, Trevor Ariza missed a 3-pointer, Chandler blocked a layup try by Garrett Temple, and Robinson stripped the ball from Wall in the closing seconds... Wall finished with 20 points and eight assists, Marcin Gortat scored 16 points, and Trevor Booker added 12 points and 12 rebounds for the Wizards.
Wall was miffed by a no-call at the end of the game, when Robinson made the last of his four steals.
Randolph and Leuer lead Grizzlies past Magic 94-85
The AP reports: MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- As the injury list continues to grow for the Memphis Grizzlies, reserves like Jon Leuer are seizing the opportunities they get.
Leuer scored 16 points and grabbed a career-best 12 rebounds Monday night to help the short-handed Grizzlies build an early lead and hold on to defeat the Orlando Magic 94-85.
"We've had a lot of guys go down," Leuer said. "It obviously makes it tough, but it opens up other opportunities for guys to come in and contribute."
Memphis' reserves outscored their Orlando counterparts 38-4, helping send the Magic to their sixth straight loss. The Grizzlies' bench players are getting more playing time as injuries to four key players left only nine available against Orlando.
Memphis center Marc Gasol is out indefinitely with a knee injury, while Ed Davis (ankle) and Tony Allen (hip) also sat out. Earlier in the day, the Grizzlies announced guard/forward Quincy Pondexter will miss significant time, possibly the rest of the season, with a right foot stress fracture... The Magic were missing center Nikola Vucevic, their leading rebounder and second-leading scorer, who missed his fourth straight game with a sprained left ankle.
Blazers get past Jazz, off to best start since 1990-91
The AP reports: SALT LAKE CITY -- Blowing out Utah for a second time this month was not in the cards for Portland. With the Jazz making a fourth-quarter rally, the Blazers struggled to fight through offensive sluggishness and escape with a win.
Nicolas Batum and Damian Lillard provided the lifeline in the final minute.
Batum drained a 3-pointer to beat the shot clock and Lillard followed with another shot from long-range on the next possession to lift the Blazers to a 105-94 victory over the Jazz on Monday night... LaMarcus Aldridge scored 24 points and Damian Lillard added 18 to propel Portland to a bounce-back win after a loss to Dallas on Saturday snapped a four-game winning streak. Robin Lopez chipped in 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Wesley Matthews added 16 points for the Blazers, who notched their second win over Utah in December.
Reserve Alec Burks had 20 points for the Jazz, who dropped their fourth game in a row. Enes Kanter added 19 points and Gordon Hayward chipped in 17 for Utah, which trailed the entire second half after nine ties and nine lead changes in the first half.
NBA DAILY FOR MON, DEC. 9
Recaps of NBA games played Sunday
LeBron James scores 24 points as Heat breeze past Pistons
The AP reports: AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- LeBron James and Miami breezed through one big rematch.
Now the Heat can prepare for another.
James had 24 points, nine assists and seven rebounds, and Miami routed Detroit 110-95 on Sunday, avenging a home loss to the Pistons less than a week ago. Up next for the Heat is a game at Indiana on Tuesday. The Pacers have the NBA's best record -- and this will be the first meeting between the teams since Miami's seven-game victory in last season's playoffs... Andre Drummond had 19 points and 14 rebounds for Detroit, which had its four-game winning streak snapped. The Pistons never showed any sign of slowing down Miami, and although they finished with 17 offensive rebounds, they never took full advantage of a potential edge inside.
Detroit had a 21-6 edge in second-chance points, but that could have been far worse for the Heat against Drummond and Greg Monroe.
Celtics slam Knicks in biggest rout of NBA season
The AP reports: NEW YORK -- Another sizzling start for the Celtics, only this time they kept pouring it on.
By the time they were finished, they had battered the New York Knicks in the most lopsided NBA game this season. Jordan Crawford made six 3-pointers and scored 23 points, and Boston won its third straight with a 114-73 victory on Sunday.
Jared Sullinger added 21 for the Celtics, who jumped to leads of 12-0, 18-1 and 25-3 and improved their Atlantic Division-leading record to 10-12.
"It was just fun to get a win like that in here because I've been on the other side of it a couple times. It's good to get a win against the division," Crawford said... Starting guards Raymond Felton and Iman Shumpert were both 0 for 6, center Andrea Bargnani was 1 for 7, and Anthony finished 5 of 15.
Howard, Harden lead Rockets over Magic 98-88
The AP reports: HOUSTON -- Dwight Howard was late for the pregame shootaround. So he knew that playing on his 28th birthday, and against his former team, the onus was on him to both atone and deliver.
Done and done.
Howard had 20 points and 22 rebounds Sunday night to lead the Houston Rockets over the Orlando Magic 98-88... James Harden scored 27 points and also had 10 assists and eight rebounds for the Rockets. Terrence Jones contributed 16 points and 13 rebounds.
Jones scored 10 a busy third quarter when Houston pulled away for good, extending its lead to as many as 22 points. He also blocked five shots, stopping Victor Oladipo as time expired in the third quarter to preserve an 83-61 lead.
Chandler Parsons, who missed two games because of a sore back, started for Houston and had 18 points.
Thunder dismiss Pacers, stay undefeated at home
The AP reports: OKLAHOMA CITY -- Oklahoma City insisted there was no extra motivation playing against an Indiana team sporting the NBA's best record.
Kevin Durant certainly played like there was on Sunday night, scoring 36 points and grabbing 10 rebounds as the Thunder made quick work of the visiting Pacers with a 118-94 win.
What started as a matchup of NBA Finals' hopefuls quickly turned into a rout, with Oklahoma City leading by as many as 29 points in the first half before finishing with stars Durant and Russell Westbrook -- who added 26 points and 13 assists -- resting comfortably on the bench... Durant was 14 of 23 from the field and Oklahoma City shot a season-best 61 percent (47 of 77). Reggie Jackson added 15 points off the bench, while Serge Ibaka finished with 13.
Indiana, which shot just 40 percent (34 of 85), was playing its second game in two nights -- having won at San Antonio on Saturday.
Roy Hibbert backed up George's strong second-half performance with 12 points, while David West also finished in double figures with 11.
Kobe Bryant returns from Achilles injury, but Lakers lose to Raptors
The AP reports: LOS ANGELES -- Nearly eight months after Kobe Bryant limped off the Lakers' home court with a torn Achilles tendon and a career in doubt, he struggled to keep his composure when he finally stepped back onto the same hardwood.
And though his comeback night didn't quite go to script, Bryant couldn't help reflecting on the work necessary to get back on that court -- and all the months of steady labor ahead to reclaim his game.
Bryant had nine points and eight rebounds in his season debut, but Amir Johnson scored a career-high 32 points in the trade-depleted Toronto Raptors' 106-94 victory over Los Angeles on Sunday night. Bryant began his 18th NBA season by going 2 for 9 with four assists and eight turnovers in 28 minutes. The fourth-leading scorer in NBA history got hurt April 12 and persevered through several months of rehabilitation to return for Los Angeles' 20th game of the new season, only to struggle with his shot, his timing and his new teammates.
NBA DAILY FOR SUN, DEC. 8
Recaps of NBA games played Saturday
Paul George, Pacers snap 11-game losing streak against Spurs
The AP reports: SAN ANTONIO -- This was no ordinary victory for Paul George and the Indiana Pacers. They know how difficult it is to beat the San Antonio Spurs.
George scored 28 points and Indiana defeated San Antonio 111-100 on Saturday night, snapping an 11-game skid against the Spurs.
"It means a lot," George said. "We haven't won here since 2002. So it definitely means that we're onto something. Something great is going on in here, if we just continue to keep on this path, we have a positive future."
David West had 20 points and Lance Stephenson scored 15 for the Pacers, who enjoyed a 41-34 rebounding edge. Roy Hibbert and Luis Scola each had 12 points and 10 boards... Kawhi Leonard scored 18 points for San Antonio, which has dropped three of five. Manu Ginobili added 16 points, Tony Parker had 13 and Tim Duncan finished with 10.
Hamilton leads Nuggets over 76ers 103-92
The AP reports: PHILADELPHIA -- Playing their fourth game in five nights and missing their leading scorer, the sluggish Nuggets appeared well on their way to their third straight loss.
Then they cracked down on defense and found a hot hand off the bench in Jordan Hamilton.
Hamilton hit three straight 3-pointers late in the fourth quarter to help Denver overcome a slow start and the absence of Ty Lawson for a 103-92 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday night.
"He's been doing that for us. He spaces the floor," Nuggets coach Brian Shaw said of Hamilton. "We finally got some movement when our guards started to attack, their defense started to converge and he found the open windows."
The Nuggets (12-8) led by four with 4:28 to go before Hamilton, who finished with 13 points, made three 3s in a span of 67 seconds to push Denver's lead to 11.
Kyrie Irving bounces back, helps Cavs hold off Clippers
The AP reports: CLEVELAND -- Cavaliers coach Mike Brown delivered a simple message for Kyrie Irving after the All-Star point guard had the first scoreless game of his career Friday night: forget about it.
Brown's advice worked.
Irving scored 20 points, including seven in the fourth quarter, and Cleveland defeated the Los Angeles Clippers 88-82 Saturday night. Irving made his first shot of the night on a layup a little over three minutes into the game. The basket snapped a streak of 14 consecutive misses dating to the third quarter of Wednesday's game against Denver. Irving, who was 0 of 9 Friday, hit 6 of 15 from the field Saturday. His two free throws with 15.7 seconds left put the game away.
Brandon Jennings leads Pistons past banged-up Bulls
The AP reports: CHICAGO -- Brandon Jennings and Detroit's big men helped the Pistons to their first successful trip to Chicago in seven years.
Jennings scored 33 points and the Pistons beat the short-handed Bulls 92-75 on Saturday night for their fourth consecutive victory. Andre Drummond (14 rebounds), Greg Monroe (12) and Josh Smith (10) led Detroit to a 51-44 rebounding edge as the Pistons (10-10) stretched their road winning streak to four games dating to Nov. 24.
It was Detroit's first victory in Chicago since Feb. 24, 2006. The Pistons had lost 14 in a row at the United Center.
Klay Thompson, David Lee spark Warriors' rout of Grizzlies
The AP reports: MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Klay Thompson erased a previous bad outing by scoring early and in the process helped himself accomplish a first in his NBA career.
Thompson scored 30 points Saturday night and the Golden State Warriors ended an 11-game losing skid to Memphis, defeating the short-handed Grizzlies 108-82.
"I've been in this league three years, and I haven't beaten them in three years," said Thompson, who was limited to five points in a loss at Houston on Friday. "So, to finally get a win, the way we did, it felt great to win big like that."
David Lee added 23 points for the Warriors and Stephen Curry scored 20 of his 22 points in the second half, despite shooting 7 of 16 on the night. Curry matched his career-best with 15 assists, two more Memphis' team total.
LeBron James flirts with triple-double as Heat rout Timberwolves
The AP reports: MINNEAPOLIS -- The Miami Heat walked into Target Center with a big problem over the previous two games -- they had been dominated on the glass.
That was two games too many for LeBron James.
The reigning NBA MVP had 21 points, eight assists and 14 boards for his first double-digit rebounding game of the season, leading the Heat to a 103-82 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday night. Dwyane Wade had 19 points and five rebounds in his return from a two-game absence and the Heat controlled the glass until garbage time after getting hammered on the boards by Detroit and Chicago in consecutive losses. James' 14 boards were the most he's had for the Heat in a regular season game.
Brook Lopez, Nets bounce back to defeat Bucks
The AP reports: MILWAUKEE -- Brook Lopez and the Brooklyn Nets needed a strong performance after an embarrassing loss to the New York Knicks.
Call it a perfect time for a trip to Milwaukee.
Lopez scored 32 points, Joe Johnson had 15 and the Nets beat the lowly Bucks 90-82 on Saturday night. Lopez dominated inside, making 11 of 13 shots from the field. He also had seven rebounds and four assists as Brooklyn bounced back from Thursday night's 113-83 home loss to New York. The Nets had dropped four of five overall.
"When you have a player like Brook or Joe, who can also command double teams, you're going to have some shots around the arc that we made tonight," Nets coach Jason Kidd said. "So, everybody pitched in."
Cousins leads Kings past Jazz 112-102 in OT
The AP reports: SALT LAKE CITY -- DeMarcus Cousins had 28 points and Isaiah Thomas scored 23 of his 26 points after halftime to help the Sacramento Kings snap a six-game skid with a 112-102 overtime victory against the Utah Jazz on Saturday night.
Trey Burke gave the Jazz their final lead at 102-101 with a 3-pointer, but the Kings scored the final 11 points of overtime. Burke finished with 19 points and 10 rebounds.
Thomas clinched it when he stole the ball from Alec Burks and got a return pass from Cousins for a layup to give the Kings a 110-102 lead with 57 seconds left.
Kings guard Ben McLemore made a 3-pointer with 3.2 seconds left in regulation to tie the game at 97-97.
Gordon Hayward had 22 points for Utah, but didn't score in overtime. The Jazz were missing injured starters Derrick Favors and Marvin Williams.
Mavs' Monta Ellis sinks buzzer-beater to snap Blazers' win streak
The AP reports: PORTLAND, Ore. -- On Saturday morning, the Trail Blazers added a play designed for Monta Ellis.
It worked to perfection Saturday night.
Ellis drained a 21-foot jumper with no time left on the clock and Dallas snapped the Portland's four-game winning streak with a 108-106 victory. The game winner came on an inbounds pass from Jose Calderon... Ellis finished with 22 points and Dirk Nowitzki had 28, along with a season-high seven assists, for the Mavericks' third straight win.
Damian Lillard had a season-high 32 points for the Blazers, including a 3-pointer with 1.9 seconds left that tied it at 106.