A roundup of Wednesday night’s NBA action, as LeBron James celebrated his 36th birthday by helping the Lakers to a 121-107 victory over Spurs.
Miami Heat turned the tables on the Milwaukee Bucks with a second-half turnaround, while Jaylen Brown scored a career-high 42 points to help host Boston Celtics to a 126-107 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies.
Wednesday night NBA results
|Memphis Grizzlies 107-126 Boston Celtics|
|Atlanta Hawks 141-145 Brooklyn Nets|
|Milwaukee Bucks 108-119 Miami Heat|
|Charlotte Hornets 118-99 Dallas Mavericks|
|Los Angeles Lakers 121-107 San Antonio Spurs|
|Portland Trail Blazers 105-128 Los Angeles Clippers|
Los Angeles Lakers 121-107 San Antonio Spurs
LeBron James scored 26 points, including two key baskets in the home stretch, to lead the visiting Los Angeles Lakers to a 121-107 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.
On his 36th birthday, James scored in double digits for the 1,000th game in a row, expanding his NBA record streak. He added eight assists and five rebounds.
The Lakers took control in the first quarter and never let San Antonio back into the game, forging a 92-74 lead at the end of the third period.
Spurs reduced the deficit to 10 points heading into the final quarter and eight points in the final three minutes. However, San Antonio couldn’t come close as James and Anthony Davis hit big shots to close the win.
Both teams play in San Antonio again on New Years Day.
Portland Trail Blazers 105-128 Los Angeles Clippers
Kawhi Leonard had 28 points, seven assists and three interceptions on his return to the roster, and he led the Los Angeles Clippers to a 128-105 victory over the visiting Portland Trail Blazers.
Paul George added 23 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists as Los Angeles claimed its second straight victory after a worst 51-point loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.
Leonard wore a mask after missing two games with a mouth laceration that required eight stitches. He took an elbow in his face from teammate Serge Ibaka last Friday in a win over the Denver Nuggets.
CJ McCollum made 7 of 11 3-point attempts while scoring 25 points for the Trail Blazers. Damian Lillard scored 20 points but was just 3 of 14 from the field, including missing his eight shots from behind the arc.
Los Angeles have won each of their last two games by 23 points, after claiming a 124-101 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday.
Atlanta Hawks 141-145 Brooklyn Nets
Kevin Durant scored 33 points and Kyrie Irving added 17 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter as the Brooklyn Nets outlasted the Atlanta Hawks to a wild 145-141 victory in New York.
Durant recorded his first double-double as a net adding 11 rebounds, and he missed his 13th career triple-double by two assists. After sitting down for the first time on Monday, Durant shot 11 of 22 from the floor and made his nine free throws.
Irving’s 3-point pointer gave Brooklyn a 137-132 lead with 2:01 left and the lead was reduced to 137-136 after John Collins hit two free throws with 45 seconds left. . On the next possession, Irving hit a 10-foot fadeaway in the lane over De’Andre Hunter with 32.5 seconds left for a 139-136 lead.
After Bogdanovic missed a 3 point with 26.9 seconds left, Allen grabbed the rebound and Irving connected with Durant for a base dunk that went 141-136 with 15.6 seconds left. A 3-point pointer by Hunter made 141-139 with 8.8 seconds left, but Durant froze him to the line with 6.3 seconds remaining.
Atlanta seemed to go their separate ways at the end of Game 3 when a 3-point pointer from Solomon Hill gave them a 103-94 lead with 1:16 remaining. Brooklyn quickly countered with an 8-1 push on two layups by Prince sandwiched around a 3-point Durant and Atlanta led 104-102 entering the fourth.
Charlotte Hornets 118-99 Dallas Mavericks
First-round draft pick LaMelo Ball had his first strong NBA outing and his 22 points helped the Charlotte Hornets beat the Dallas Mavericks 118-99.
Miles Bridges, a reserve, contributed 20 points and 16 rebounds, a career-high, and Terry Rozier had 18 points for the Hornets, who have won four of their last five visits to Dallas.
PJ Washington and Gordon Hayward scored 11 points apiece and Jalen McDaniels added 10 points for the Hornets, who have won for the first time in two road games this season.
Charlotte led by 31 points in the third quarter.
For the Mavericks, who were in their home opener after a 1-2 road streak to start the season, it was a trivial turnaround from their previous game – a 51-point loss to the Clippers from Los Angeles Sunday.
Tim Hardaway Jr.’s 18 points, Jalen Brunson’s 16 points and Maxi Kleber’s 12 points were the best for Dallas. Luka Doncic was held by 12 points on a 4 for 10 shot from the field in just 24 minutes.
Ball, a guard coming off the bench, had 15 points in the first half. He finished the game with nine rebounds, five assists and a 7 for 10 shot from the field (including 4 for 5 of 3). In the first three games of his career, Ball managed a total of 19 points.
Milwaukee Bucks 108-119 Miami Heat
Reserve Goran Dragic drew 26 points as the Miami Heat recovered from a miserable performance against Milwaukee to beat the visiting Bucks 119-108.
The game was a much more competitive rematch of Tuesday’s contest, a victory for the Bucks 144-97. The Bucks set an NBA record in that game with 29 3 points, hitting 56.9 percent at long distance.
Miami’s Bam Adebayo had 22 points and 10 assists on Wednesday while Tyler Herro posted a career-high 21 points and 15 rebounds. Herro and Dragic – Miami’s top two playmakers – had 47 points, 20 rebounds and six assists in 55 minutes.
Giannis Antetokounmpo led Milwaukee with 26 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists, registering his 19th career triple-double.
By halftime, however, Milwaukee had jumped to the top 56-51.
The Bucks took their biggest lead of the game, 72-58, with eight minutes left in the third quarter on an Antetokounmpo dunk. Antetokounmpo had 14 points in the period, but Miami made a run and entered the fourth tail 91-88 as Herro hit a 3-point buzzer.
That momentum continued into the fourth quarter as the Heat took a 112-99 advantage with 4:39 to go and started from there.
Memphis Grizzlies 107-126 Boston Celtics
Jaylen Brown scored a career-high 42 points before sitting down in the fourth quarter to send host Boston Celtics to a 126-107 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies.
Brown made 15 of 21 shots from the ground – including 7 of 10 3-pointers – to put Boston in a comfortable 96-71 lead after three quarters. His 26 points in the first two quarters served as a career high for a half.
Brown’s previous best total for a game was 34 points, set in the Celtics’ 129-117 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on December 27, 2019. He also had 34 points in Boston’s 104-102 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks in a playoff game. April 22, 2018.
Jayson Tatum scored 16 points and Marcus Smart had four 3-pointers to finish with 14 points for the Celtics, who have won 10 in a row against the Grizzlies. Boston’s last loss to Memphis was a 101-98 decision on January 10, 2016.