Thunder 112, Knicks 100
The showdown between the NBA’s top two scorers turned out to be a mismatch.
Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant outscored New York’s Carmelo Anthony 41-15, and the host Oklahoma City Thunder defeated the New York Knicks.
Durant, the league’s leading scorer, also had 10 rebounds and nine assists. Anthony, the league’s No. 2 scorer, finished with 15 points on 5-for-19 shooting for the Knicks.
Thunder coach Scott Brooks took Durant out of the game with 1:24 remaining, leaving Durant short of a rare 40-point triple-double by a single assist.
“I got on Serge [Ibaka],” Durant said, laughing. “He missed a dunk and he passed up a shot.”
Durant also was largely responsible for guarding Anthony.
“He missed some shots that he normally makes,” Durant said. “I just tried to play as strong as I can, contest some shots and not get discouraged when he hits them because he makes tough shots and he’s a guy that can get hot.”
Reggie Jackson had 19 points and six assists for the Thunder.
Bulls 92, Lakers 86
Kirk Hinrich scored 19 points, Joakim Noah had 18 points and 13 rebounds, and the visiting Chicago Bulls held off the stubborn Los Angeles Lakers after nearly blowing a 19-point lead. Center Chris Kaman scored a season-high 27 points off the bench for the Lakers.
Nets 93, Pelicans 81
Rookie Mason Plumlee scored a season-high 22 points and matched his best with 13 rebounds in a high-flying performance, and the host Brooklyn Nets used their best defensive first half in eight years as the springboard for a victory over the New Orleans Pelicans. Brooklyn held New Orleans to 28 points in the first 24 minutes, its lowest total since also allowing 28 against the Lakers on Nov. 27, 2005.
Magic 93, Pacers 92
Victor Oladipo had 23 points, including 13 in the fourth quarter, and the host Orlando Magic rallied to surprise the Indiana Pacers. Indiana stole Orlando’s inbounds pass with nine seconds left and Paul George was able to get off a 20-foot jumper. But it was deflected and rebounded by the Magic, who ran out the clock.
Mavericks 102, Celtics 91
Dirk Nowitzki scored 20 points and Shawn Marion finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds for visiting Dallas as the Mavericks extended their winning streak to a season-high five in a row.
Wizards 93, Kings 84
Nene scored 18 points and led a strong defensive effort to help the host Washington Wizards end a two-game skid. Bradley Beal scored 16 points, hitting two 3-pointers in the final 6 minutes.
Clippers 123, 76ers 78
The host Los Angeles Clippers raced to a 30-5 lead midway through the first quarter and cruised to victory. Blake Griffen led the Clippers with 26 points, 11 rebounds and six assists.