East-leading Bulls beat Wizards for 9th straight victory

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CHICAGO (AP)Zach LaVine scored 27 points, Coby White added 21 and the Chicago Bulls won their ninth straight, beating the Washington Wizards 130-122 on Friday night.

The Eastern Conference-leading Bulls matched their longest winning streak since the 2010-11 team won nine in a row to finish the regular season. They also had an easier time in this one after winning last week at Washington on DeMar DeRozan’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer, grabbing the lead late in the third quarter and remaining in control down the stretch.

Lonzo Ball scored 18 points, hitting six of Chicago’s 15 3-pointers. Rookie Ayo Dosunmu also had 18 points, and coach Billy Donovan earned his 300th NBA win.

Bradley Beal led Washington with 26 points, and Kyle Kuzma had 21 points and 11 rebounds. The Wizards lost for the third time in four games.

BUCKS 121, NETS 109

NEW YORK (AP) – Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 31 points in his return from a one-game absence, Khris Middleton added 15 of his 20 in the third quarter and Milwaukee blew out Brooklyn.

Bobby Portis scored 20 of his 25 in the first half to help the Bucks snap a two-game skid. The last loss came without Antetokounmpo, who didn’t play Wednesday night against Toronto because of an illness unrelated to COVID-19.

The Bucks are without coach Mike Budenholzer, point guard Jrue Holiday and a number of other key players because of coronavirus health and safety protocols, but got big games from some who did play. Antetokounmpo had nine assists and seven rebounds, and Portis grabbed 12 boards.

Kevin Durant had 29 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for the Nets, who have lost five straight home games. James Harden finished with 16 points, nine rebounds and seven assists.

Brooklyn won Wednesday night in Indiana with Kyrie Irving making his season debut. He wasn’t in the building Friday, ineligible to play home games because he hasn’t been vaccinated against COVID-19 as mandated for New York City’s professional athletes.

LAKERS 134, HAWKS 118

LOS ANGELES (AP) – LeBron James scored 23 of his 32 points in the second half, Malik Monk added a season-high 29 points and Los Angeles held off Atlanta for its first four-game winning streak of the season.

Avery Bradley and Talen Horton-Tucker scored 21 points apiece for the Lakers, who have won five of six overall while remaining perfect on a five-game homestand that ends Sunday. With Anthony Davis the only major contributor still absent from their injury-plagued roster, the Lakers had a season-high 37 assists.

Trae Young had 25 points and 14 assists for Atlanta. The Hawks have lost five of seven amid significant coronavirus problems.

76ERS 119, SPURS 100

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Joel Embiid had 31 points and 12 rebounds and Philadelphia beat short-handed San Antonio for its sixth straight victory.

Seth Curry and Tobias Harris each scored 23 points for the 76ers.

Dejounte Murray scored 27 points for San Antonio. The Spurs were without six players because of health and safety protocols. They have lost five of six.

MAVERICKS 130, ROCKETS 106

HOUSTON (AP) – Tim Hardaway Jr. had 19 points and seven assists and Dallas overcame the absence of Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis and coach Jason Kidd to beat Houston.

Doncic has a sprained right ankle, Porzingis missed his fourth straight game in the NBA’s health and safety protocols, and Kidd who entered the health and safety protocols Friday. Assistant coach Sean Sweeney stepped in his place. The Mavericks have won five a row.

Christian Wood led Houston with 20 points.

RAPTORS 122, JAZZ 108

TORONTO (AP) – Fred VanVleet had 37 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists for his first career triple-double, OG Anunoby scored 22 points and Toronto ended Utah’s road winning streak at 10.

Pascal Siakam scored 17 points, Chris Boucher had 13, Scottie Barnes had 11 and Gary Trent Jr. added 10 to help the Raptors extend their winning streak to five.

Eric Paschall scored a career-high 29 points for Utah.

NUGGETS 121, KINGS 111

DENVER (AP) – Nikola Jokic had 33 points and 10 rebounds and Denver beat Sacramento to end a two-game losing streak.

Jokic reached 20 points for the seventh straight game as Denver got reinforcements back from health and safety protocols.

Forwards Jeff Green and Zeke Nnaji were activated off the COVID-19 list while Aaron Gordon and Bones Hyland played after being sent home from Thursday’s film session due to non-COVID-19 illnesses. Green had 18 points, Hyland 13 and Gordon 10. Denver coach Michael Malone remained in health and safety protocols.

De’Aaron Fox had 30 points for the Kings.

TIMBERWOLVES 135, THUNDER 105

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – D’Angelo Russell had 27 points and 12 assists and Minnesota routed Oklahoma City for its third straight victory.

Russell made 11 of 12 field goals and 4 of 5 3-pointers to help the Timberwolves beat the Thunder for second tine in three nights. Minnesota won 98-90 on Wednesday night in Minneapolis.

Anthony Edwards scored 24 points, and Karl-Anthony Towns added 19 points for the Timberwolves.

Lu Dort scored 18 points for the Thunder. They have lost three straight.

CAVALIERS 114, TRAIL BLAZERS 101

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -Darius Garland had 26 points and Rajon Rondo added 11 in his Cavaliers debut, leading Cleveland past Portland.

Cleveland improved to 22-17, matching its victory total from last season.

Rookie Evan Mobley added 18 points for Cleveland.

Norman Powell had 19 points for the Trail Blazers. They have lost six of seven.

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