Durant scores 31, leads Nets past Timberwolves 127-97

Sports

MINNEAPOLIS (AP)Kevin Durant scored 31 points on 11-for-15 shooting in his most productive performance in 2 1/2 months, as the Brooklyn Nets blew out the Minnesota Timberwolves 127-97 on Tuesday afternoon.

The game was rescheduled from the previous night, in the aftermath of a fatal police shooting of a Black man in a nearby suburb. The Timberwolves held a moment of silence before tipoff for 20-year-old Daunte Wright, who was killed after a traffic stop.

Durant played 27 minutes in his third game back from a strained left hamstring that kept him out for 23 games. The Nets, missing James Harden, Kyrie Irving and LaMarcus Aldridge, were in command from the jump and ahead by 23 points before the midpoint of the second quarter. They built their lead as big as 45 points early in the fourth quarter.

Joe Harris pitched in 23 points for the Nets, who had 31 assists on 46 made baskets.

Anthony Edwards had 27 points and eight rebounds for the Timberwolves, who played without Karl-Anthony Towns on the one-year anniversary of his mother’s death from COVID-19 complications.

CLIPPERS 126, PACERS 115

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Paul George continued to dominate his former team by scoring 36 points, leading Los Angeles past Indiana.

The Clippers have won six straight and 12 of 14 overall.

George also had seven rebounds and eight assists while improving to 4-0 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse since being traded by the Pacers to Oklahoma City in July 2017.

Indiana was led by Malcolm Brogdon’s 29 points. Caris LeVert scored 26 as the Pacers snapped a three-game losing streak.

SUNS 106, HEAT 86

PHOENIX (AP) – Deandre Ayton had 19 points and 13 rebounds and Phoenix got 65 points from its bench on the way to a victory over Miami.

Four bench players scored in double figures, including Cam Johnson (15 points), Cam Payne (14), Torrey Craig (14) and Dario Saric (13). That offset a fairly quiet night for the Suns’ All-Star backcourt of Devin Booker and Chris Paul.

Booker finished with 12 points and Paul had five points and nine assists.

The Suns have won 10 of their last 11 games, including three in a row. They improved to 39-15. The Heat fell to 28-26.

Miami shot 9 of 44 (20.5%) from beyond the arc. Jimmy Butler led the Heat with 18 points and Duncan Robinson added 15.

HAWKS 107, RAPTORS 103

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) – Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 23 points, Clint Capela added 19 points and 21 rebounds, and Atlanta beat Toronto for its seventh win in eight games.

Kevin Huerter had 14 of his 17 points in the first half for Atlanta, and Brandon Goodwin added 18 points.

Pascal Siakam led the Raptors with 30 points and rookie Malachi Flynn scored 22.

The Hawks played a second straight game without Trae Young after Young’s 42-point, nine-assist performance against Chicago on Friday night. Young has a left calf contusion.

LAKERS 101, HORNETS 93

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Kyle Kuzma scored 24 points, and the Lakers held on to beat a Charlotte team missing five of its top six scorers.

Dennis Schroder added 19 points and Andre Drummond chipped in with 12 rebounds for the Lakers, who closed out a seven-game road trip with a 4-3 record to remain in fifth place in the Western Conference.

Devonte Graham led the Hornets with 19 points. Caleb Martin had 17 points and 10 rebounds.

JAZZ 106, THUNDER 96

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) – Bojan Bogdanovic scored 23 points and Donovan Mitchell added 22 as Utah beat struggling Oklahoma City.

Luguentz Dort scored career-high 42 points and Moses Brown had 12 points and 15 rebounds for the Thunder, who have lost seven in a row and 10 of 11.

Rudy Gobert had 13 points, 14 rebounds and seven blocks for Utah, which held the Thunder to 38.7% shooting.

Mike Conley, who rested the first half of the back-to-back when the Jazz had their 24-game home win streak snapped, had 15 points and a season-high 14 assists for league-leading Utah (41-14).

CELTICS 116, TRAIL BLAZERS 115

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Jayson Tatum scored 32 points, including a key 3-pointer in the final moments, and Boston held off Portland to extend its winning streak to four straight games.

Jaylen Brown added 24 points and Kemba Walker had 21 for Boston, winners of six of their last seven games.

Damian Lillard had 28 points and 10 assists, and Carmelo Anthony had 25 points off the bench for Portland.

More AP NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

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