NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Jrue Holiday scored 36 points and stole the ball from Paul George three times in the final minutes to spoil George’s season debut and lead the New Orleans Pelicans to a 132-127 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night.
George was playing for the first time since signing as a free agent with the Clippers because he’d been recovering from shoulder surgery last spring. He did not appear rusty, scoring 33 points in 24 minutes, only to be done in by late turnovers at the hands of Holiday, who finished with six steals, including one on Lou Williams’ attempted bounce pass in the final seconds to seal the victory.
Derrick Favors had 20 points and a career-best 20 rebounds in the first 20-20 game of his 10-year career. Frank Jackson added 23 points in a reserve role.
The Clippers played without Kawhi Leonard, who was being rested for the third time this season to ease stress on his sore knee after playing a night earlier in a loss at Houston. But the Pelicans were hardly sympathetic with starters Brandon Ingram (right knee) and Lonzo Ball (groin) sidelined, as well.
J.J. Reddick scored 19 and hit two free throws with 11.4 seconds left to help wrap up just New Orleans’ third victory in 11 games this season.
Williams scored 31 points and Rodney McGruder 20 for the Clippers, who’ve dropped two straight.
HEAT 108, CAVALIERS 97
CLEVELAND (AP) - Rookie Kendrick Nunn scored 23 points, Bam Adebayo had 16 points and 15 rebounds, and Miami beat Cleveland.
Miami led the entire game and was up by 27 points in the third quarter. The Heat (8-3) have the second-best record in the Eastern Conference.
Rookie Tyler Herro, who missed Tuesday’s game with an ankle injury, had 16 points, while Jimmy Butler finished with 14 for Miami. The Heat shot 43 of 79 from the field and made 12 of 30 from 3-point range.
Kevin Love had 21 points and 10 rebounds for Cleveland, while Collin Sexton added 15 points.
KNICKS 106, MAVERICKS 103
NEW YORK (AP) - Marcus Morris made a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 13.2 seconds remaining to delight a Madison Square Garden crowd that booed Kristaps Porzingis all night, and New York beat Dallas.
Morris also knocked away the Mavericks’ inbounds pass with under a second left, sending the Knicks to just their third victory in 12 games this season.
Porzingis finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds in his first game in New York as a visitor. Luka Doncic had 33 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds in his fifth triple-double of the season.
Porzingis was the No. 4 pick in the 2015 draft who developed first into a fan favorite and then an All-Star. But he soured on the Knicks, and the fans have clearly soured on him.
Morris scored 20 points and Julius Randle had 17 points and 10 rebounds for the Knicks.
BUCKS 124, BULLS 115
MILWAUKEE (AP) - Giannis Antetokounmpo had 38 points and 15 rebounds, Eric Bledsoe added a season-high 31 points and eight assists and Milwaukee withstood another historic effort by Chicago rookie Coby White.
White shot 5 of 8 from 3-point range in the first half, becoming the youngest player in NBA history to hit five 3-pointers in consecutive games. The 19-year-old seventh overall pick in the 2019 draft set an NBA rookie record Tuesday night, making seven 3-pointers in the fourth quarter of a 120-102 victory over the New York Knicks. White finished Thursday with a team-high 26 points, including six 3s.
Antetokounmpo had at least 30-plus points for the seventh game this season for the Bucks, who played without Khris Middleton. The All-Star forward is expected to miss the next three to four weeks with a thigh bruise.
Donte DiVincenzo, who made his first career start in place of Middleton, had four points and four rebounds.
Zach LaVine added 25 points and seven assists before fouling out for the Bulls.
SUNS 128, HAWKS 112
PHOENIX (AP) - Kelly Oubre Jr. scored a season-high 30 points, Devin Booker added 27 and Phoenix beat Atlanta.
Phoenix (7-4) is off to its best start through 11 games since 2009, when they started 9-2.
Dario Saric added 23 points after shooting 9 of 12 from the field, including 3 of 5 from 3-point range.
Atlanta (4-7) was led by Jabari Parker, who scored 24 points. Trae Young had 21 points and 13 assists two nights after a 42-point, 11-assist performance in a win over Denver.
NUGGETS 101, NETS 93
DENVER (AP) - Nikola Jokic had 18 points and 10 rebounds, Mason Plumlee provided a boost off the bench as Denver wore down Brooklyn.
The Nets were playing their fourth road game in seven nights. They shot 23% in the second half.
Paul Millsap added 18 points for a Nuggets team that’s proving adept at rallying late.
Kyrie Irving had 17 points and nine assists despite a sore right shoulder. Irving was questionable earlier in the day but got treatment and was ready to go by game time.
DeAndre Jordan had an interesting stat line - 11 rebounds and no points. Jarrett Allen added 17 points and 10 boards as the Nets dropped to 1-3 on their five-game trip.
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