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March 24 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Monday's National Basketball Association games.
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Spurs 113, 76ers 91
Austin Daye scored a season-best 22 points as the Spurs won their 14th consecutive game while handing the Sixers their 25th straight defeat.
Philadelphia (15-56) can match the NBA record for longest losing streak on Thursday at Houston.
Daye, playing only his fourth game since the Spurs acquired him in a trade with Toronto on Feb. 20, hit six of 10 three-point shots, grabbed six rebounds and made two blocks.
Tim Duncan scored 19 for the NBA-best Spurs (54-16).
Rookie guard Michael Carter-Williams and Thaddeus Young led Philadelphia with 17 points apiece.
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Heat 93, Trail Blazers 91
The Miami Heat held off a furious rally by the Portland Trail Blazers to squeak out a victory.
LeBron James, playing despite a sore back and an ankle injury, led all scorers with 32 points, including the game-winning layup with 11 seconds left.
The Heat saw a 17-point, fourth-quarter lead disappear and needed a game-saving block by Chris Bosh as Portland's Damian Lillard drove the basket in the final two seconds looking to tie the score.
Lillard scored 19 for Portland (45-26), who have now lost seven of their past 11 games.
The Heat (48-21) are 12-7 in games without Dwyane Wade, who sat out Monday's game due to an ankle injury.
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Bulls 89, Pacers 77
Taj Gibson scored 23 points to lead the Chicago Bulls to a victory over the Indiana Pacers.
Kirk Hinrich added 18 points for the Bulls (40-31). Joakim Noah finished with 10 points, eight rebounds and eight assists.
Indiana (51-20) missed the chance to clinch the Central Division title, although that seems to be a formality. Their lead atop the Eastern Conference was trimmed to two games over Miami.
Paul George led the Pacers with 21 points and George Hill scored 17, but Indiana shot just 37 percent from the field.
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Thunder 117, Nuggets 96
Kevin Durant scored 27 points to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to a victory over the Denver Nuggets.
Durant has now scored at least 25 points in 35 consecutive games and is five away from tying Michael Jordan's all-time record since the NBA merger in 1976. Durant also had eight assists and shot 10-for-21 from the field.
Oklahoma City (52-18) played without Russell Westbrook, out with a knee injury.
The injury-plagued Nuggets (32-39) were never really in contention the entire night.
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Rockets 100, Bobcats 89
James Harden scored 31 points as the Houston Rockets extended their winning streak to four games with a victory over the Charlotte Bobcats.
Harden scored 14 of his points in the third quarter, when the Rockets pushed a four-point halftime lead to 78-68 after three quarters.
Dwight Howard returned after missing the previous three games with a left ankle strain and finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds in 32 minutes as the Rockets (48-22) remain in the No. 4 spot in the Western Conference playoff race.
Kemba Walker led the Bobcats (34-37) with 22 points, and Al Jefferson finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds.
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Suns 102, Hawks 95
Goran Dragic used a combination of outside jumpers and drives to the basket to score 19 points, helping the Phoenix Suns beat the Atlanta Hawks and move a step closer to the playoffs.
Dragic scored the last six points of the third quarter to punctuate an 18-9 run and send the Suns to their fourth consecutive victory.
Phoenix (42-29) are eighth in the West and in a tight race with Dallas and Memphis for the final two playoff spots.
Atlanta (31-38) got 19 points from both Paul Millsap and DeMarre Carroll but saw their lead in the race for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference shrink to 2 1/2 games.
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Grizzlies 109, Timberwolves 92
Mike Conley scored 23 points, Zach Randolph added 17 and Marc Gasol registered a double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Memphis Grizzlies to a victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The Timberwolves (34-35) lost for the 16th time in their past 18 meetings with the Grizzlies (42-28).
Minnesota were led by forward Kevin Love's 16 points.
Memphis survived a scare late in the third quarter when Conley fell to the floor after apparently re-injuring his ankle. Conley, who missed seven games in early February after spraining his right ankle, returned to start the fourth quarter, however.
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Pelicans 109, Nets 104 (OT)
Anthony Morrow overcame a frigid shooting night to bury a pair of three-pointers in overtime, and New Orleans got a season-high 33 points from Tyreke Evans to erase a 22-point, third-quarter deficit and defeat the Brooklyn Nets.
Morrow's first long-range jumper came just seconds after coach Monty Williams tried to pull him from the game for his 2-of-10 shooting but had the substitution disallowed.
Anthony Davis, who scored 24 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, had a monster defensive play down the stretch for the Pelicans (30-40), swallowing up a layup attempt by Mason Plumlee.
The Nets (37-32) were paced by Paul Pierce with 24 points and Deron Williams with 23.
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Pistons 114, Jazz 94
Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe had double-doubles and the Detroit Pistons ended a four-game Western Conference swing on a positive note by beating the Jazz.
Drummond scored 19 points with 14 rebounds, Monroe contributed 18 points and 11 boards.
Detroit improved to 26-44 and trail eighth-place Atlanta (31-38) by 5.5 games.
Gordon Hayward led all scorers with 32 points and dished out a team-best six assists for Utah (23-48).
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Clippers 106, Bucks 98
Blake Griffin scored 27 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, leading the Los Angeles Clippers to a victory over the Milwaukee Bucks.
The Clippers (50-21) topped the 50-win mark for only the second time in franchise history. They won 56 games last season. Milwaukee (13-58) lost its eighth straight game.
Darren Collison added 15 points and six assists, while point guard Chris Paul had 14 points and seven assists.
Ramon Sessions led Milwaukee (13-58) with 28 points to go along with seven rebounds and six assists. (Editing by Peter Rutherford/Sudipto Ganguly)