Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant lead Brooklyn Nets past Phoenix Suns with effortless scoring display

Kyrie Irving had 34 points with 12 assists, while Kevin Durant scored 33 points after a brief time away, as the Brooklyn Nets earned a 128-119 victory over the visiting Phoenix Suns on Sunday in a showdown between two of the top teams in the NBA.

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Sunday night’s NBA results

Phoenix Suns 119 – 128 Brooklyn Nets

Blake Griffin scored 16 points, as the Nets backed up their standing as the top team in the Eastern Conference.

Devin Booker scored 36 points for Phoenix, while Deandre Ayton scored 20 points with 13 rebounds, as the Suns dropped consecutive games for the first time since late January.

Phoenix, which entered as the No. 2 team in the Western Conference, is now 2-2 on a five-game East Coast trip with a final game at the New York Knicks on Monday.

Durant, who entered as a substitute with eight minutes remaining in the first half, showed little rust after missing the last three games with a thigh contusion. He was 12 of 21 from the field in 28 minutes of action.


After trailing by as many as 13 points in the second quarter, the Nets entered the fourth period with a slim 97-92 lead. They pushed it to 102-92 less than a minute into the fourth quarter on a shot inside and a 3-pointer from Durant, who set the tone for the final 12 minutes. The Nets outscored the Suns 31-27 in the fourth quarter.

Green and Joe Harris scored 10 points each for the Nets, while DeAndre Jordan had 12 rebounds. Irving, who was 5 of 7 from 3-point range, reached 30 points for the 15th time this season.

Sacramento Kings 113 – 117 Golden State Warriors

Draymond Green assisted on a go-ahead hoop by Kelly Oubre Jr. with 1:42 to play and then followed in a Stephen Curry miss 34 seconds later, helping the Golden State Warriors outlast the visiting Sacramento Kings for a 117-113 victory.

A second straight win pushed Golden State (31-30) over .500 in its pursuit of a play-off spot in the Western Conference and gave the Warriors a 2-1 season-series victory over their Northern California rival.

The loss was critical to the Kings (24-36), who fell six and a half games behind Golden State in the playoff chase.

After four ties and three lead changes in the final period, the Warriors trailed 111-110 after a Tyrese Haliburton layup with 1:55 to play before Oubre dropped in his big hoop.

Richaun Holmes had a chance to tie the game and put the Kings ahead, but missed two free throws, after which Curry couldn’t connect from the interior.

But Green got to the ball first, tipping it in to give Golden State a three-point cushion.

Haliburton got Sacramento within 114-113 on a layup with 18.5 seconds remaining, and the Kings caught a break when Curry missed one of two free throws with 9.2 seconds left.

But Harrison Barnes, who had hit five of his first eight 3-point attempts, misfired on a potential game-winning 27-footer.

Fouled with seven-tenths of a second remaining after grabbing the rebound, Curry capped a 37-point game with two clinching free throws.

Milwaukee Bucks 104 – 111 Atlanta Hawks

Bogdan Bogdanovic matched his season high with 32 points and Lou Williams scored all of his 15 points in the fourth quarter to spark the Atlanta Hawks to a 111-104 come-from-behind win over the visiting Milwaukee Bucks.

Bogdanovic and Williams each had three treys during a 19-6 fourth-quarter run that allowed Atlanta to snap its six-game losing streak against Milwaukee. The Hawks made seven straight 3-point attempts in the fourth quarter after going 5-for-25 to start the game.

Bogdanovic was 12-for-21 from the field and 6-for-11 on 3-point baskets and Williams was 4-for-7 on 3s, along with six assists.

Atlanta (34-27) improved to seven games over .500 for the first time since March 11, 2017, the last season the Hawks made the playoffs. The Hawks also got 20 points from Kevin Huerter and 18 points from John Collins.

The Hawks were playing without leading scorer Trae Young for the second night with a left ankle sprain.

Milwaukee (37-23) got 31 points, 14 rebounds and two blocks from Giannis Antetokounmpo and 23 points from Khris Middleton.

Atlanta have won 11 of its last 14 games and pushes them into a tie for fourth place in the Eastern Conference with the New York Knicks.

Boston Celtics 104 – 125 Charlotte Hornets

Charlotte guard Devonte’ Graham scored 24 points as the Hornets reached the 20-point mark in defeating the visiting Boston Celtics 125-104.

P.J. Washington had 22 points and 12 rebounds, Terry Rozier tallied 21 points and 11 assists, and Miles Bridges had 20 points. Each of the team’s top four scorers made at least four 3-point shots, topped by Graham with six and Rozier with five.

Cody Martin matched his career-high total with 13 points to go with 10 rebounds and Brad Wanamaker notched 12 points off the bench.

Jaylen Brown, who returned from a two-game absence, and former Charlotte standout Kemba Walker, who departed briefly with a first-half injury before returning, posted 20 points apiece for the Celtics. Walker was 7-for-17 on threes.

Jayson Tatum added 19 points and 11 rebounds and Marcus Smart had 17 points.

Memphis Grizzlies 120 – 113 Portland Trail Blazers

Dillon Brooks scored 17 of his 18 points in the second half, including eight over a critical late-game run, to lead the Memphis Grizzlies to a 120-113 defeat of the host Portland Trail Blazers.

Morant led all scorers with 28 points as the Grizzlies swept a back-to-back with Portland.

Memphis (31-28) held a 14-point lead early in the fourth quarter before Carmelo Anthony knocked down four 3-pointers in less than two minutes.

Anthony, amid a 14-2 Portland run, barked at Brooks on the Grizzlies bench during a timeout.

Brooks responded by fuelling Memphis’ own run of 17-4, following three made free throws with a 3-pointer. He capped the burst beating Damian Lillard off of a pump-fake, hung in the air and made a floater against contact, celebrating with an emphatic flex.

The loss was the Trail Blazers’ fifth straight and ninth in the past 11 contests.

CJ McCollum scored 27 points for Portland while Lillard added 23 and Norman Powell had 17. Jusuf Nurkic – who scored a season-high 26 points in Friday’s loss – grabbed a season-high 19 rebounds to go with 16 points for Portland.

Though the 17-4 run pushed the Grizzlies lead back to double digits, Portland rallied to cut the deficit to three points in the final minute. Brooks came through again when Lillard, who finished with 23 points, attacked the rim on a fast break from Powell’s steal of Grayson Allen.

Brooks chased down the play and blocked Lillard’s reverse layup attempt with 35.2 seconds remaining. Morant made a steal on the ensuing inbounds pass.

Morant iced the win with four made free throws down the stretch. Jonas Valanciunas recorded a double-double of 21 points and 10 rebounds and Kyle Anderson added 16 points.

With the back-to-back wins in Portland, Memphis owns a potential tiebreaker between the teams in the Western Conference playoff race.

Indiana Pacers 131 – 112 Orlando Magic

Malcolm Brogdon collected 24 points, nine assists and eight rebounds to lift the visiting Indiana Pacers to a 131-112 victory over the Orlando Magic.

Brogdon made 10 of 17 shots from the floor for the Pacers (29-31), who have won three in a row overall and completed a season sweep of Orlando for the fifth time in the last seven campaigns.

Edmond Sumner scored 21 points and Justin Holiday had 20 off the bench as Indiana shot 54.9 per cent from the floor and 46.9 per cent from 3-point range. Holiday made 6 of 8 shots from beyond the arc.

Caris LeVert had 18 points and Doug McDermott added 16 as the Pacers took control of the game after outscoring the Magic by a 41-20 margin in the third quarter.

Dwayne Bacon scored 20 points for the Magic (18-42), who saw Devin Cannady sustain an open fracture of his right ankle after landing awkwardly while contesting a layup by Sumner with 3:09 remaining in the first quarter.

Cannady, 24, immediately screamed in pain and clutched at his leg before he was wheeled off the court on a stretcher.

Cleveland Cavaliers 110 – 119 Washington Wizards

Bradley Beal scored 33 points and the Washington Wizards rallied past the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers 119-110 for their eighth straight win.

The Wizards, who trailed by eight early in the fourth quarter, closed the game with an 11-2 run.

Russell Westbrook had 14 points and 11 assists, and Robin Lopez and Raul Neto scored 14 points each for Washington (27-33). Beal was 13 of 24 from the field.

Darius Garland scored 28 points and Jarrett Allen added a career-high 27 points and 12 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who were without guard Collin Sexton (concussion), their leading scorer.

The Cavaliers (21-39) have lost five of six, while Washington’s bench outscored Cleveland’s 51-14.

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