Pacers pound Celtics
Oklahoma suffer first home loss of season at the hands of Toronto
Eastern Conference-leading Indiana beat sliding Boston 106-79 on Sunday, with Paul George scoring 24 points and Lance Stephenson recording his third triple-double of the season.
Elsewhere, Oklahoma City suffered its first home loss of the season at the hands of Toronto, and the Los Angeles Clippers beat Minnesota in overtime. Indiana’s Stephenson had 12 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. He is the only player in the NBA with more than one triple-double this season.
Trevor Ariza started and finished a fourth-quarter run that carried the Washington Wizards to a 106-99 comeback win over the Boston Celtics in the NBA on Saturday.
Trailing 92-84, Ariza began the 14-1 rally with a jumper from the right corner. John Wall had five of his 20 points in the surge, which was interrupted only by a free throw by Jared Sullinger that gave Boston a 93-91 lead with 3:39 remaining.
Nene tied the game with a short baseline jumper and Wall gave the Wizards their first lead, 95-93, with a 20-footer with 2:5 to go. Marcin Gortat then blocked Sullinger’s shot and Ariza hit a 3-pointer with 2:25 remaining to put Washington ahead 98-93. Ariza scored 27 points as Washington won a third straight game.
The Celtics entered the game in first place in the East’s Atlantic Division. At San Antonio, Russell Westbrook had 31 points and Oklahoma City used a strong second quarter to beat San Antonio for its ninth straight victory. Reggie Jackson had 21 points, Kevin Durant added 17 and Serge Ibaka had 14 points and 14 rebounds for Oklahoma City.
Tony Parker scored 23 points, and Marco Belinelli and Tim Duncan had 17 points apiece for San Antonio, which took only its second home loss. Also, the Memphis Grizzlies ended a five-game losing streak by beating the woeful New York Knicks 95-87.
The Knicks tried to change their luck in home day games, where they had lost by 41 points to the Celtics and 31 to San Antonio in noon starts, by staying in a hotel the night before. They were much more competitive, but far from good enough until it was too late.
Dwight Howard had 35 points and 19 rebounds, leading the short-handed Houston Rockets to a 114-97 victory over the Detroit Pistons. In one of his best games since joining the Rockets in the offseason, Howard dominated Andre Drummond, Detroit’s promising 20-year-old big man, and helped Houston control the game despite the absence of injured guard James Harden.
Carlos Boozer scored 19 points and the short-handed Chicago Bulls ended a four-game losing streak with a 100-84 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.