Sport | Basketball

NBA: Oklahoma Thunder beat LA Clippers as leaders clash

Kevin Durant scores 35 points to beat fellow divisional leaders

  • AP
  • Published: 12:41 March 4, 2013
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: EPA
  • LA Clippers’ Chris Paul (left) is fouled by Russell Westbrook of the Thunder. The Clippers won 108-104.

Los Angeles: Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant scored 35 points as the Thunder held off a late rally by the Los Angeles Clippers to win 108-104 in Sunday’s clash of NBA divisional leaders.

Russell Westbrook had 29 points and 10 assists as the Thunder ended a three-game road skid, bouncing back less than 48 hours after losing at Denver. They also completed a season sweep of Los Angeles.

Chris Paul scored 26 points, and Blake Griffin and Jamal Crawford added 20 apiece for the Clippers, whose four-game winning streak ended with their third loss to the Thunder this season.

In other key games, Miami tied a franchise record with its 14th straight win, defeating New York, Indiana beat Chicago to increase the gap between the Central division leaders to four games, San Antonio routed Detroit despite missing Tony Parker, and the Los Angeles Lakers pipped Atlanta by a point to keep up playoff hopes.

Miami’s LeBron James had 29 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists, as the Heat rallied to beat the New York Knicks 99-93.

Dwyane Wade added 20 points for the Heat, who had to overcome a 16-point deficit to beat the Knicks for the first time in three tries this season. Chris Bosh bounced back from a dismal first half to finish with 16 points.

The defending NBA champions won their sixth straight on the road by controlling the final minutes against a team that had a pair of 20-point victories over them this season.

James shook off a third-quarter leg injury and was back in top form by the finish, putting it away by coming up with a steal and throwing down a dunk with 23 seconds left.

Carmelo Anthony scored 32 points for the Knicks, who had their three-game winning streak snapped.

Indiana’s David West scored 31 points and George Hill added 21, leading the Pacers past the Chicago Bulls 97-92.

The Pacers have won seven of their past eight games to open a four-game lead on the Bulls.

Chicago was led by Marco Belinelli and Jimmy Butler, who each had 20 points for a team that was missing four important players with injuries. Chicago fell behind late in the first quarter and spent most of the rest of the game trying to play catch-up.

San Antonio’s Manu Ginobili scored 17 points while Tim Duncan had 16 points and 11 rebounds as the Spurs routed the Detroit Pistons 114-75.

The Spurs rolled to their most lopsided victory of the season in their first game since Parker was injured. He will miss about a month with a sprained ankle.

Greg Monroe scored 16 points for Detroit, which has lost five of six.

Los Angeles’ Kobe Bryant scored 11 of his 34 points in the fourth quarter and hit the go-ahead layup with nine seconds left, leading the Lakers over the Atlanta Hawks 99-98 and back to .500 for the first time in more than two months.

The Lakers who blew a 16-point lead in the second half before Bryant scored their last six points.

After Bryant scored the Lakers’ final basket, Steve Blake swiped Josh Smith’s desperation pass from underneath Los Angeles’ basket. Bryant threw the ball high in the air to run out the clock on Los Angeles’ seventh straight home victory over the Hawks since 2006.

Al Horford scored 24 points for the Hawks.

Houston’s Chandler Parsons scored a career-high 32 points on 12-for-13 shooting as the Rockets snapped a nine-game losing streak to Dallas, beating their Texas rivals 136-103.

Memphis’ Tayshaun Prince had 14 points and Marc Gasol added 12 points and 11 assists as the Grizzlies cruised to a 108-82 victory over the Orlando Magic.

Washington’s John Wall scored the final six points of the game after teammate Bradley Beal left the court with an apparent injury, leading the Wizards past the Philadelphia 76ers 90-87.

Sacramento’s John Salmons scored 22 points and Jason Thompson had 18 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Kings to a 119-83 victory over the slumping Charlotte Bobcats.

Gulf News
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