(The Sports Xchange) – Highlights of Friday’s National Basketball Association games:
Spurs 104, Thunder 101
LaMarcus Aldridge scored 26 points, the final two on a crucial basket in the last minute, as the San Antonio Spurs roared back from a ragged beginning to defeat the Oklahoma City Thunder 104-101 at the AT&T Center.
After trailing by as many as six points in the fourth quarter, Oklahoma City pulled to within 100-99 on a free throw by Paul George with 45 seconds to play.
On the ensuing possession, Aldridge scored on a putback to push San Antonio’s lead to 102-99 before the Thunder’s Carmelo Anthony canned a jumper with his right foot on the three-point line with five seconds remaining to cut the lead to 102-101.
Pau Gasol then hit two free throws with two seconds to play and, after a time out, Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook had to settle for a contested, wild shot at the buzzer that didn’t even hit the rim.
Cavaliers 118, Clippers 113 (OT)
LeBron James scored 19 of his 39 points in the second half and overtime to lead Cleveland over Los Angeles.
Kevin Love added 25 points and Dwyane Wade scored 23 points with a season-high 11 rebounds for the Cavs, who did not lead until overtime and trailed by as many as 15.
The Clippers have lost seven straight. Blake Griffin led them with 23 points but shot 8-for-25.
Kings 86, Trail Blazers 82
Willie Cauley-Stein set a season-high with 22 points, the last one a free throw with 3.4 seconds remaining that lifted Sacramento over Portland.
Cauley-Stein, relegated to coming off the bench for the first time this season, scored 13 in the second half and had two key put-backs in the fourth quarter.
Sacramento won its third straight at home and snapped a three-game losing streak.
Timberwolves 111, Mavericks 87
Jimmy Butler scored 21 and Andrew Wiggins added 19 points to lead a balanced attack and Minnesota rallied from a 14-point deficit to rout Dallas.
The Timberwolves had six players score in double figures, including all five starters.
Karl-Anthony Towns (15 points and 11 rebounds), Jeff Teague (15 points and 10 assists) and Taj Gibson (10 points and 11 rebounds) each notched double-doubles.
Bulls 123, Hornets 120
Justin Holiday scored 27 points, Kris Dunn had 22 and Lauri Markkanen hit a pair of free throws with 2.6 seconds remaining as Chicago beat Charlotte.
Denzel Valentine scored 18 points to go along with 16 from Markkanen. Jerian Grant and Bobby Portis each finished with 10 points for the Bulls (3-10).
Kemba Walker scored 47 points for Charlotte, which lost its sixth straight.
Nets 118, Jazz 107
Spencer Dinwiddie compiled a career-high 25 points and eight assists as Brooklyn beat Utah.
Dinwiddie made his third start of the season in place of D’Angelo Russell, who underwent arthroscopic knee surgery earlier in the day.
With Russell watching the game on television from his Manhattan hospital room, Dinwiddie hit 9-of-14 shots, 6-of-10 three-pointers and grabbed five rebounds in 31 minutes.
Allen Crabbe added 18 points, DeMarre Carroll contributed 17 and Trevor Booker chipped in 14.
Raptors 107, Knicks 84
Kyle Lowry scored 22 points and added 10 assists and eight rebounds as Toronto defeated New York.
DeMar DeRozan also scored 22 points and added seven assists and six rebounds for the Raptors, who have won three games in a row.
The Raptors led by as many as 22 points early in the third quarter and carried a 14-point lead into the fourth quarter.
Heat 91, Wizards 88
Hassan Whiteside had 22 points and 16 rebounds as Miami fended off a frenzied comeback attempt by Washington.
Otto Porter’s two free throws with 11.3 seconds remaining pulled the Wizards within 89-88. After Miami’s James Johnson hit one of two free throws with 5.8 seconds left, Bradley Beal missed a potential game-tying jumper with 2.6 seconds showing.
Beal scored 22 of his 26 points in the second half.
Pacers 107, Pistons 100
Victor Oladipo scored 21 points and grabbed 15 rebounds to help Indiana rally from a 22-point third-quarter deficit.
Indiana scored the first seven points of the third quarter to cut the lead to 58-54 but fell behind 78-56. The Pacers went on a run of trim the deficit to 10 points after three quarters.
Indiana narrowed the deficit to 92-91 on Lance Stephenson’s three-pointer with 5:43 left. Domantas Sabonis hit two free throws to give the Pacers a 93-92 lead. After a basket by Stephenson, Tobias Harris sank a thee-pointer to make it 95-95.
Nuggets 146, Pelicans 114
Jamal Murray scored 31 points, Gary Harris returned from missing two games with a sore right shoulder to score a season-high 22 and the Denver Nuggets routed the New Orleans Pelicans 146-114.
Paul Millsap had 20 points, six rebounds and seven assists, Nikola Jokic had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Emmanuel Mudiay scored 19 for Denver (9-6).
The 146 points were a season high for Denver and the most the Pelicans have allowed the season. The Nuggets hit 62.9 percent from the field a game after Toronto shot 59.2 percent against New Orleans.
Suns 122, Lakers 113
Devin Booker scored 22 of his 33 points in the first half and the Phoenix Suns held on to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers 122-113 at Staples Center.
Alex Len had 17 points and 18 rebounds off the bench, Tyler Ulis had 14 points and seven assists and T.J. Warren had 13 points and seven rebounds for the Suns (6-11).
Kyle Kuzma scored 28 of his season-high 30 points in the second half for the Lakers (6-10). Brook Lopez had 19 points and 10 rebounds and Brandon Ingram 17 points and eight rebounds for Los Angeles, which beat the Suns in Phoenix twice this season.
(Editing by John O’Brien)