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WJBD - National Sports - Nuggets dust Lakers...Heat, Bobcats continue opposite paths...Smith lifts Knicks

Nuggets dust Lakers...Heat, Bobcats continue opposite paths...Smith lifts Knicks

UNDATED (AP) - The Denver Nuggets have played an NBA-low 10 home games this season, which amounts to just one-third of their schedule. But they also have the league's best home winning percentage after improving to 9-1 in Denver with a 126-114 win over the Los Angeles Lakers.

 

     Corey Brewer hit four of his six three-pointers in the final 12-plus minutes and matched his career high with 27 points. Kenneth Faried added 21 points and 15 rebounds for the Nuggets, who earned their seventh straight home win and ended the Lakers' five-game winning streak.

 

     The Lakers fell to 14-15 despite Kobe Bryant, who scored 40 points and had six assists. Bryant has scored at least 30 points in each of his last 10 games.

 

     The Miami Heat stretched their lead in the NBA's Eastern Conference while adding to the Charlotte Bobcats' losing streak.

 

     LeBron James had 27 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists as the Heat dealt the Bobcats their 16th consecutive loss, 105-92. Dwyane Wade added 29 points and nine boards for Miami, which saw a 17-point halftime lead cut to two with 7:16 left before the Heat went on a 11-3 run to pull away for their sixth straight win.

 

     J.R. Smith hit the tying and winning baskets in the waning seconds of New York's 99-97 triumph at Phoenix. Smith hit a 15-footer with 10.6 seconds remaining before draining a 21-footer at the buzzer following a Suns turnover with one second left. Smith scored 27 points and Jason Kidd added 23 as the two picked up the offensive slack while Carmelo Anthony and Raymond Felton sat out with injuries.

 

     The outcome keeps the Knicks a half-game behind the East-leading Heat.

 

     The NBA schedule includes Philadelphia's 99-89 win at Memphis as Dorell Wright and Spencer Hawes each scored a season-high in points. Wright finished with 28 points and Hawes had 20 in the 76ers' first victory in seven road games.

 

     Toronto's five-game winning streak is over after Tim Duncan led San Antonio's balanced attack with 15 points in a 100-80 romp over the Raptors. Manu Ginobili contributed 14 points and Tony Parker added 13 as the Spurs won their third in a row to improve to 22-8.

 

     Stephen Curry scored Golden State's first 11 points and finished with a team-high 23 in a 94-83 verdict over Utah. David Lee had 18 points for the Warriors, who shot 9-for-18 from beyond the arc.

 

     Atlanta needed a double-overtime to beat Detroit 126-119 and improve to 17-9. Josh Smith dropped in 31 points and had 10 rebounds, while Al Horford chipped in 22 points and 10 boards.

 

     James Harden scored 17 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter to rally Houston to its fifth straight win, 87-84 at Minnesota. Harden scored 15 of the Rockets' final 17 points, including a pair of driving buckets in the final minute.

 

     Milwaukee beat Brooklyn for the 13th straight time as Brandon Jennings scored 25 points and Monta Ellis added 20 in the Bucks' 108-93 rout of the Nets. Brook Lopez had 21 points and 10 rebounds in the Nets' third straight loss.

 

     LaMarcus Aldridge and J.J. Hickson each had double-doubles as Portland beat Sacramento 109-91 to move back over the .500 mark at 14-13. Aldridge had a game-high 28 points and 12 rebounds, while Hickson delivered 17 points and 14 boards.

 

     Cleveland has its first winning streak of the season after Tristan Thompson's three-point play with 24.4 seconds left gave the Cavaliers an 87-84 win at Washington. Kyrie Irving scored 20 of his 26 points in the first half for the Cavaliers, who improved to 7-23.

 

     New Orleans ended an 11-game skid by downing the Magic 97-94 in Orlando. Robin Lopez had a season-high 29 points and Greivis Vasquez scored 27 points in the Hornets' fourth consecutive win over the Magic.

 

     Chicago's game at Indiana was postponed by a snowstorm that hit the Indianapolis area. No date has been set for rescheduling the game.

 

     In other NBA news:

 

     - Grizzlies leading scorer Rudy Gay sat out Wednesday's game against Philadelphia due to personal reasons. No other information was immediately available.

 

     - Brooklyn Nets guard Deron Williams was scratched from Wednesday's game in Milwaukee after aggravating his sore right wrist the day before. Williams is averaging 16.6 points a game this season.

 

     - Minnesota had Kevin Love back in the lineup for Wednesday's game against Houston after missing Sunday's loss in New York with an eye injury. Love is averaging 19.6 points and 13.9 rebounds this season.

 

     - The Toronto Raptors say rookie Jonas Valanciunas is expected to be out four to six weeks after breaking the ring finger on his right hand during last Friday's win over Orlando.  Valanciunas had started in all 28 games for the Raptors this season, averaging 7.8 points and 5.2 rebounds.

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