February 25, 2018, 3:55 am
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Russ, Thunder silence Embiid, visiting Sixers

OAKLAND. — Russell Westbrook barely missed a triple-double with 37 points, 14 assists and nine rebounds, and the Oklahoma City Thunder held on for a 122-112 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday evening at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Paul George finished with 31 points as the Thunder won their eighth consecutive game, which is the longest active streak in the NBA. Steven Adams notched a double-double with 20 points and 13 rebounds.

Joel Embiid led Philadelphia with 27 points and 10 rebounds in a losing effort. Ben Simmons tallied 22 points on 10-for-14 shooting. Dario Saric added 16 points in 21 minutes.

The Thunder beat the 76ers for the 18th time in a row, including the 10th straight time on their home court. Philadelphia’s last win against Oklahoma City took place Nov. 15, 2008, during Westbrook’s rookie season.

Cavaliers 121, Pistons 104: In  Cleveland, LeBron James racked up 25 points, eight rebounds and 14 assists and the Cavaliers handed the Detroit Pistons their eighth consecutive loss behind a big fourth-quarter finish at Quicken Loans Arena.

Kevin Love contributed 20 points and 11 rebounds, J.R. Smith had 15 points and Isaiah Thomas added 14 points and seven assists for the Cavs. Jae Crowder and Kyle Korver tossed in 12 points apiece off the bench as Cleveland gradually pulled away after the game was tied with 7 1/2 minutes remaining.

Tobias Harris and Anthony Tolliver led the Pistons with 20 points apiece. Andre Drummond posted 17 points, 11 rebounds and four assists, while Reggie Bullock and Stanley Johnson each scored 14 points.

Rockets 113, Suns 102: In Houston,  James Harden flirted with a triple-double, and Houston rode a balanced scoring attack to a victory over Phoenix at the Toyota Center.

Harden finished with 27 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, as the Rockets improved to 3-0 against the Suns this season despite failing to record a basket over the final seven-plus minutes of the game. The Rockets took a 107-93 lead on a Ryan Anderson 3-pointer at the 7:35 mark and then withstood a late surge keyed by Suns guard Devin Booker and forward T.J. Warren.

Booker and Warren combined to score 17 consecutive points for the Suns to slice a 15-point deficit to 109-101 with just under three minutes remaining. Booker, making his second consecutive start at point guard, finished with 31 points and 10 assists. Warren added 24 points.

Raptors 123, Lakers 111: In Toronto, Fred VanVleet led seven players in double figures with a career-best 25 points as Toronto built an early lead and never looked back in a victory over Los Angeles..

The win allowed the Raptors (33-15) to clinch no worse than the second-best record in the Eastern Conference in the first half of the NBA season, meaning Dwane Casey will coach Team LeBron in the All-Star Game. Boston (35-15) has a better record than Toronto, but the Celtics’ Brad Stevens is ineligible to coach at the All-Star Game because he earned the honor last season.

VanVleet hit nine of his 13 shots, including three of his four 3-point attempts, to surpass his previous career-best of 22 points set earlier this month against Cleveland.

Spurs 113, Kings 98: In San Antonio,  Bryn Forbes poured in a season-high 23 points, including five in the stretch that ultimately pushed his team to the lead, as San Antonio defeated Sacramento at the AT&T Center.

The Spurs forged a 14-0 run over the final 3:43 of the third quarter and the first two minutes of the fourth to break open a nip-and-tuck game and roll to the win. Forbes hit a pair of jumpers in that surge.

Six players scored in double figures for the Spurs, who also got 15 points from LaMarcus Aldridge and Manu Ginobili, 14 from Pau Gasol and Dejounte Murray, and 11 points from Patty Mills. Gasol added 11 rebounds and Murray took 10 boards as San Antonio beat the Kings for the 13th straight time and the 10th consecutive game played in the Alamo City.

Clippers 112, Pelicans 103: In New Orleans,  Blake Griffin scored 27 points and Los Angeles overcame a 21-point deficit to defeat New Orleans at the Smoothie King Center.

Lou Williams added 22 points, Tyrone Wallace scored 19, DeAndre Jordan had 12 points and 19 rebounds and Milos Teodosic scored 12.

Anthony Davis had 25 points and 17 rebounds to lead New Orleans, which saw its season-best four-game winning streak end in its first game without All-Star forward DeMarcus Cousins, who suffered a season-ending ruptured Achilles against Houston on Friday. Jrue Holiday scored 20 and E’Twaun Moore had 18.

Bucks 110, Bulls 96: In Chicago,  Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 27 points, grabbed nine rebounds and dished eight assists as Milwaukee pulled away for a win over Chicago at the United Center.

Khris Middleton contributed 20 points and seven rebounds for the Bucks. John Henson, Jason Terry and Sterling Brown added 12 points apiece as the Bucks won their third game in a row. – Reuters
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