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Nuggets snap Cavaliers' winning streak

CLEVELAND — Ty Lawson scored 24 points, Arron Afflalo added 23 and the struggling Denver Nuggets ended Cleveland’s four-game winning streak with a 106-97 victory over the Cavaliers on Monday night.

Denver took the lead for good early in the third quarter and was up by as many as 14 midway through the fourth.

LeBron James, who missed the morning shootaround because of a cold, led Cleveland with 22 points.

The Nuggets limped into the game having lost seven of eight and were coming off Sunday’s defeat at New York in which they made one field goal in the second quarter.

Denver looked like a different team Monday, placing five players in double figures. Leading 90-84, the Nuggets scored eight straight points and went ahead 98-84 on Lawson’s layup with 6:01 to play.

Cleveland, which hit its first 11 3-pointers Saturday against Atlanta, failed to reach 100 points for the first time in six games.

Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters each scored 20 points for the Cavaliers.

GRIZZLIES 119, ROCKETS 93: At Memphis, Tenn., Mike Conley scored 19 points and Memphis easily defeated Houston in a matchup of the teams with the NBA’s two best records.

Whatever showdown was expected from two 9-1 teams and among the best defensive squads in the league never materialized as the Grizzlies took a 16-point lead in the first quarter and extended it in each of the remaining periods, until it reached 36 points in the fourth frame.

Seven players finished in double figures for Memphis, which won its fourth straight overall.

SPURS 100, 76ERS 75: At San Antonio, Matt Bonner had 18 points and San Antonio’s Big Three got some rest as the Spurs handed Philadelphia its 10th straight loss to open the season.

Tim Duncan had 16 points and nine rebounds, and Kawhi Leonard had five points and 11 rebounds in limited action. Cory Joseph added 14 points for the defending NBA champions, who never trailed.

Duncan played 16 minutes and Tony Parker 18. Both sat out the entire fourth quarter after playing just 5 minutes in the third.

MAVERICKS 107, HORNETS 80: At Charlotte, N.C., Monta Ellis scored 18 points, Chandler Parsons had 17 and Dallas defeated Charlotte for its fourth straight victory.

Dirk Nowitzki had 13 points to become the fourth player in NBA history to eclipse 27,000 with one franchise, joining a prestigious group that includes current Hornets owner Michael Jordan, Karl Malone and Kobe Bryant.

The Mavericks came in leading the NBA in scoring, averaging more than 109 points. Charlotte offered little resistance as Dallas routinely scored on uncontested alley-oops, dunks, layups and 3-pointers.

HEAT 95, NETS 83: At New York, Mario Chalmers scored 22 points, Chris Bosh ended his shooting slump and added 15 points and nine rebounds, and Miami snapped a three-game losing streak by beating Brooklyn.

With Dwyane Wade out for a third straight game due to a strained left hamstring, Chalmers remained in the starting lineup for the second consecutive night and keyed the finishing spurt for the Heat. He converted a three-point play, added another free throw and then set up Bosh for a 3-pointer that turned a four-point lead into a 91-80 advantage with 1:23 left.

SUNS 118, CELTICS 114: At Boston, Markieff Morris scored a career-high 30 points and Eric Bledsoe had a key steal and breakaway dunk in the closing minute to lift Phoenix over Boston.

Goran Dragic had 22 points, Alex Len scored 19 with seven rebounds and Bledsoe finished with 15 points and seven assists for the Suns, who lost their previous two games.

Jeff Green led Boston with 28 points, and Jared Sullinger had 18 points with eight rebounds.

MAGIC 107, PISTONS 93: At Auburn Hills, Mich., Tobias Harris scored 14 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter as Orlando pulled away late to beat Detroit.

Nikola Vucevic finished with 25 points and 14 rebounds for the Magic, who had all five starters in double figures.

BULLS 105, CLIPPERS 89: At Los Angeles, Jimmy Butler led six players in double figures with 22 points as Chicago improved to 6-0 on the road for the first time since 1996-97.

Taj Gibson had 20 points starting in place of the injured Pau Gasol, Mike Dunleavy Jr. added 19 points and Joakim Noah had 11 points and 16 rebounds. The Bulls remained the NBA's only undefeated road team while opening a season-long, seven-game trip without the injured Derrick Rose.

Jamal Crawford led the Clippers with 24 points off the bench, and Blake Griffin added 19 points and 10 rebounds.

Cleveland's Kevin Love, center, gets tangled with teammate Anderson Varajao, left, while rebounding in front of Denver's Kenneth Faried Monday. AP PHOTO