Harden scores 43 in easy victory over slumping Kings
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — James Harden scored a season-high 43 points before resting for all of the fourth quarter, and the Houston Rockets routed the Sacramento Kings, 129-103 on Tuesday.
Harden helped Houston go ahead by 25 points in the first quarter, 31 in the second and 33 in the third. He shot 11 of 20 from the floor, made 15 of 16 free throws and added eight assists, three steals and two rebounds.
Dwight Howard left briefly after banging his right knee but returned to finish with 20 points and 11 rebounds, and Chandler Parsons had 10 points and eight rebounds for the Rockets, who have won 10 of their last 11 games.
DeMarcus Cousins had 16 points and six rebounds for the Kings before getting ejected for vehemently arguing with an official in the third quarter. He picked up his NBA-leading 14th and 15th technical fouls.
Pacers 118, Lakers 98
At Indianapolis, Paul George scored 12 of his 20 points in the third quarter, Evan Turner had 13 points in his Pacers debut, and Indiana improved its league-leading record to 43-13.
Kent Bazemore finished with a career-high 23 points and Jodie Meeks added 15 for the Lakers (19-38), who have the worst record in the West. The loss also ended Los Angeles' three-game winning streak at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
The Lakers stayed closer than expected through the first 21/2; quarters and trailed just 59-58 early in the third.
But George then scored 10 points in a decisive 14-5 spurt that gave Indiana an 80-68 lead with 2:58 to go in the period.
George had seven rebounds and six assists despite spending the entire fourth quarter on the bench with most of Indiana's starters.
Bulls 107, Hawks 103
At Atlanta, Mike Dunleavy scored 22 points and Joakim Noah had 20 points and 12 rebounds, helping the Bulls hold on for the road win.
Carlos Boozer had 17 points and 11 rebounds for Chicago, and Kirk Hinrich scored 14 points, including six free throws in the final 44 seconds. The Bulls have won six of seven.
Timberwolves 110, Suns 101
At Phoenix, Kevin Love had 33 points, 13 rebounds and nine assists, powering Minnesota to the win.
The Timberwolves trailed by eight with 7:57 to play, and then outscored the Suns 24-6. Love, who got his first career triple-double at Utah on Saturday, was 10 for 22 from the field.
Rookie Shabazz Muhammad had a career-high 20 points and Corey Brewer added 18 for Minnesota.
Raptors 99, Cavaliers 93
At Cleveland, DeMar DeRozan scored 16 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter, and the Raptors won for the sixth time in seven games.
DeRozan dunked on a baseline drive and added two free throws to give the Raptors a 94-91 lead with 1:23 remaining. The All-Star hit three more free throws in the final 27 seconds to put away the game.
Kyrie Irving, who played 45 minutes and the entire second half because of Cleveland's depleted roster, had 25 points and nine assists. Cleveland has lost three straight after winning six in a row and fell 51/2; games out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The Cavaliers again played without center Anderson Varejao (sore back) and guards Dion Waiters (hyperextended left knee) and C.J. Miles (sprained left ankle).
Wizards 115, Magic 106
At Washington, John Wall scored 27 points, and the Wizards survived their first game after Nene's latest injury.
Trevor Ariza added 22 points and Marcin Gortat had 21 points and 10 rebounds for the Wizards, who made 10 of 16 3-pointers and have won a season-high four in a row to move one game above .500. They also improved to 2-6 this season without Nene, who sprained the MCL in his left knee Sunday in a 96-83 win at Cleveland.
Victor Oladipo scored 26 points for the Magic, who tied a single-season franchise record by losing their 16th consecutive road game. They remain without leading scorer Arron Afflalo.