- Associated Press - Friday, December 14, 2018

BOSTON (AP) - Kyrie Irving scored 24 points in three quarters and the Boston Celtics beat the Atlanta Hawks 129-108 on Friday night for their eighth straight victory.

Irving also had five assists, five rebounds and four steals. He scored 12 points in the first quarter and helped Boston race to a 23-5 lead. The Celtics topped 100 points with 2 minutes left in the third.

Jayson Tatum had 22 points for Boston, Marcus Morris added 20, Gordon Hayward had 19 points and five assists, Daniel Theis scored 18 points and rookie Robert Williams III blocked five shots.

Kevin Huerter led Atlanta with 19 points, and John Collins had 11 points and 14 rebounds. The Hawks, losers of six of seven, had nine of their 24 turnovers in the first quarter.


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Klay Thompson made a go-ahead 3-pointer with 38.5 seconds left, Stephen Curry added four free throws down the stretch and Golden State ended the game on a big run after a sluggish start to the fourth quarter, beating Sacramento.

Curry finished with 35 points, seven rebounds and six assists. Thompson had 27 points and nine rebounds while Kevin Durant added 33 points, eight rebounds and eight assists.

Two days after a 20-point home loss to NBA-leading Toronto, the Warriors put up 103 points through three quarters but went stagnant for more than eight minutes in the fourth before outscoring the Kings 17-2 over the final 3:03.

Durant scored 13 points in the fourth quarter, including eight of the first 10 during Golden State’s late surge.

Draymond Green had 14 rebounds and 10 assists for the Warriors.

Buddy Hield scored 27 points for the Kings, and De’Aaron Fox had 25 points, nine assists and six rebounds. Willie Cauley-Stein finished with 22 points and 11 rebounds.


DENVER (AP) - Nikola Jokic scored 24 points, Jamal Murray had 19 and Denver defeated Oklahoma City after Murray and Russell Westbrook had a heated exchange.

Westbrook and Murray pushed each other and argued after lining up next to each other for a jump ball in the final seconds. Jokic tried to get between them, and Westbrook threatened to beat up Jokic while being restrained. No blows were exchanged, but the final moments played out amid heightened tensions.

Jokic also had 15 rebounds and nine assists, just shy of a third triple-double this season. Nick Young, signed as a free agent Monday, scored six points in his Nuggets debut, including a key 3-pointer in the fourth quarter.

Paul George had 32 points to lead the Thunder, who lost their fourth in a row to the Nuggets. Steven Adams added 26 points, and Westbrook had 13.


PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Damian Lillard had 24 points and Portland stopped a two-game slide with a confidence-boosting victory over NBA-leading Toronto.

Zach Collins scored 16 points and Seth Curry added a season-high 13, including three key 3-pointers early in the fourth quarter. Both were part of a Trail Blazers bench that outscored Toronto’s reserves 58-26.

Kawhi Leonard returned after missing two games and had 28 points for the Raptors (23-8), who played without All-Star point guard Kyle Lowry. He sat out with a left thigh bruise.

Fred VanVleet started in Lowry’s place and finished with 21 points. Danny Green added 19 points and 11 rebounds, matching his season high with five 3s.

Portland led by 16 in the fourth quarter and held on late after Toronto cut it to two.

The victory snapped a six-game Portland losing streak to the Raptors.


CLEVELAND (AP) - Giannis Antetokounmpo matched his career high with 44 points and Milwaukee beat Cleveland despite missing two starters.

Antetokounmpo’s big night came after being held to a season-low 12 points Wednesday night in a loss to Indiana. He was 14 of 19 from the field, made 16 of 21 foul shots, and had 14 rebounds and eight assists.

Khris Middleton, the Bucks’ second leading scorer, was out with a sprained right finger. Malcolm Brogdon, fourth on the team in scoring, didn’t play because of a sore left hamstring.

Jordan Clarkson scored 23 points for Cleveland.

PACERS 113, 76ERS 101

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Thaddeus Young had 26 points and 10 rebounds against his former team, and the Indiana Pacers overcame Joel Embiid’s 40-point night to beat Philadelphia.

Bojan Bogdanovic had 18 points, and the Pacers won their sixth straight to pass the Sixers in the standings. Victor Oladipo played in his second consecutive game after missing 11 in a row with a knee injury and had 14 points and nine assists.

Embiid also had 21 rebounds, becoming the first Sixers player with at least 30 points and 20 rebounds since Charles Barkley on Dec. 7, 1990. Embiid is the first player in the NBA this season with a 40-point, 20-rebound game.


CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Emmanuel Mudiay had 34 points and eight assists and short-handed New York overcame a 21-point deficit to snap a five-game skid.

Mudiay scored 14 points in the fourth quarter, including a fadeaway jumper with 27.2 seconds left to tie it at 113. Charlotte’s Kemba Walker missed a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 8.2 seconds left and the game went to overtime.

Charlotte got 21 points each from Nicolas Batum and Cody Zeller, and Marvin Williams added 20. Walker finished with 16 points and 10 assists.


NEW YORK (AP) - Spencer Dinwiddie scored 27 points in his first game since signing a three-year contract extension, and Brooklyn beat Washington for its season-best fourth straight victory.

Joe Harris added 19 points for the Nets. They put up a season-high 70 points in the first half but had a 16-point lead trimmed to four in the fourth quarter.

Bradley Beal had 31 points and nine assists for the Wizards.


MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Josh Richardson and Kelly Olynyk each scored 18 points each and Miami beat Memphis to snapped a two-game losing streak.

Tyler Johnson finished with 17 points, and Derrick Jones Jr. added 13 points. Mike Conley led Memphis with 22 points.


More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/tag/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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