Raptors brush aside Lakers in great style

TORONTO: Kyle Lowry scored 24 points and dished out seven assists, DeMar DeRozan added 16 points with six assists and the Toronto Raptors defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 113-80 on Friday night to extend their winning streak to five games. The Raptors (13-6) led from the outset as the Lakers (10-11) lost for the second time in three games on a four-game trip that ends Saturday. Spurs 107, Wizards 105 Kawhi Leonard capped his 23-point performance by drilling a game-winning 17-foot jumper with 6.1 seconds to play as San Antonio outlasted Washington in a furious finish at the AT&T Center.
The Spurs ruled the final minute of the third quarter, stretched a six-point lead to as many as 10 in the first half of the fourth and weathered a final Washington run in the last two minutes.
The Wizards’ Bradley Beal poured in a 3-pointer to give Washington a 103-102 lead with 53.4 seconds remaining. San Antonio’s Patty Mills missed a 3-pointer with 28.9 to play but LaMarcus Aldridge corralled the rebound to give the Spurs another chance.
Bulls 111, Cavaliers105
Jimmy Butler scored 26 points, Dwyane Wade had 24 and Taj Gibson finished with 23 as Chicago used a balanced scoring attack to beat Cleveland at the United Center.
Gibson hit on 10 of his 13 field-goal attempts for the Bulls, whose starters all reached double figures. Chicago also got a triple double from Rajon Rondo, who had 15 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds. Robin Lopez rounded out the strong effort from Chicago’s starters with 10 points.
LeBron James scored a game-high 27 points for the Cavaliers, who lost their third straight game. Kyrie Irving scored 20 points to go along with 15 from Kevin Love for Cleveland.
Clippers 114, Hornets 96
Blake Griffin overcame a chilly offensive start to score 13 of his game-high 27 points in the decisive third quarter to lift Los Angeles to a victory over New Orleans at the Smoothie King Center.
Griffin missed six of his first eight shots but wound up 12 of 22 from the field. He also grabbed 10 rebounds. Reserve guard Jamal Crawford added 21 points for the Clippers, who culminated their six-game road trip with a 3-3 record.
Chris Paul added 17 points and 13 assists, including back-to-back passes that led to 3-pointers by Crawford and Luc Mbah a Moute that put the Clippers up 104-90. Paul also had eight rebounds, finishing two boards shy of a triple double.
Pistons 121, Hawks 85
Detroit, which started the season 1-8 on the road, completed a 3-0 trip by handing slumping Atlanta its fifth consecutive loss.
Former University of Georgia standout Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had a big homecoming with 23 points and the Pistons got over .500 for the first time since early November with a rout of the Hawks.
The Pistons made 17 of 29 3-point shots, with Caldwell-Pope going 5-for-8 and Jon Leuer 4-for-5. Tobias Harris had 18 points and Leuer scored 16 as the Pistons put eight players in double-figures while tying a team record for 3-pointers made in a game.
Knicks 118, Timberwolves 114
Carmelo Anthony popped in 29 points and Kyle O’Quinn posted his first double-double of the season to lead New York to a win over Minnesota at Madison Square Garden.
The Knicks swept the home-and-home series. New York claimed a 106-104 win at Minnesota on Wednesday.
O’Quinn, starting at centre in place of injured Joakim Noah, had 20 points, 13 rebounds and two blocked shots. Justin Holiday, making his first start at point guard for injured Courtney Lee, added 13 points and seven rebounds. Derrick Rose chipped in with 24 points.
Celtics 97, Kings 92
Al Horford scored a season-high 26 points and grabbed eight rebounds to help lead Boston past Sacramento at TD Garden.
Horford’s previous best this season since joining the Celtics on a four-year deal worth $113 million last offseason was a 20-point outing at the Minnesota Timberwolves on November 21.
Isaiah Thomas had 20 points and seven assists, Jae Crowder added 16 points and Avery Bradley contributed 15 points and nine boards for Boston (11-8), which had lost two of three coming in.
DeMarcus Cousins totalled a game-high 28 points and nine rebounds, Rudy Gay added 13 points and eight boards and Matt Barnes chipped in 12 points and 16 rebounds off the bench for Sacramento.
Magic 105, Sixers 88
Orlando was coming off a difficult loss. Philadelphia was coming off three days of rest.
The Magic nonetheless beat the Sixers as Aaron Gordon scored a season-high 20 points to lead six players in double figures.
Orlando also nailed a season-high 13 3-pointers in 26 attempts and limited Philadelphia to 37.9 per cent shooting from the field.