The Boston Celtics are owners of a seven-game winning streak that has them 1 ½ games behind the first-place Toronto Raptors in the NBA's Atlantic Division. Kemba Walker dropped in 27 points and Jayson Tatum added 26 as the Celtics got past the Thunder, 112-111 at Oklahoma City.
Jaylen Brown finished with 17 points for the Celtics, who made 16 3-pointers and improved to 37-15. Marcus Smart also keyed the victory. Smart hit a 3-pointer with 8:19 left to put the Celtics ahead to stay, and he stole the ball from Oklahoma City's Shai Gilgeous-Alexander with 5.8 seconds remaining to seal the victory. The Thunder ended a four-game winning streak despite Danilo Gallinari and Gilgeous-Alexander, who scored 24 apiece. Point guards Chris Paul and Dennis Schroder each provided 22 points for Oklahoma City, which fell into a sixth-place tie with Dallas in the Western Conference at 32-21.
Trae Young and John Collins led the Hawks to a double-overtime win against the Knicks, 140-135. Young nailed six 3-pointers and was 16 of 16 from the line while scoring 48 points and 13 assists. Collins added 32 points and 16 boards as Atlanta ended New York's season-high, four-game winning streak.
Furkan Korkmaz scored 31 points and Joel Embiid added 28 with 12 rebounds in the 76ers' 118-111 victory over the Bulls. Korkmaz stayed hot after netting a career-high 34 points in Friday's 119-107 home win over Memphis. Ben Simmons added 19 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds as Philadelphia improved their league-best home record to 24-2.
The Clippers handed the Cavaliers their worst home loss in franchise history, 133-92 as Lou Williams dropped in 25 points and Paul George added 22. Montrezl Harrell delivered 19 points and nine rebounds off the bench for Los Angeles, which played without Kawhi Leonard because of a sore left knee. The Clippers are tied with Denver for second place in the West at 37-16, three games behind the Lakers.
Bojan Bogdanovic drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Jazz a 114-113 victory over the Rockets. Jordan Clarkson scored 30 points and Donovan Mitchell finished with 24 points, six assists and five rebounds for the Jazz, who won their second straight after a five-game losing streak. Russell Westbrook had 39 points for the Rockets, while backcourt mate James Harden added a triple-double of 28 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.
Damian Lillard had 33 points and eight assists as the Trail Blazers outscored the Heat, 115-109. Gary Trent Jr. finished with 22 points and Andre Iguodala had two points for Portland in his first game since last year's NBA Finals. Hassan Whiteside had 11 points and 17 rebounds against his former team, including a pair of free throws that gave the Blazers a seven-point lead with 11.5 seconds left.
Ja Morant recorded his first career triple-double by providing 27 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds to help the Grizzlies beat the Wizards, 106-99. Morant scored 10 of his points in the fourth quarter for Memphis, which closed the game on a 22-8 run. Kyle Anderson added 16 points and Jonas Jackson Jr. had 14 in the Grizzlies' seventh win in nine games.
In men's college basketball, Iona ripped Fairfield 78-54, UMass beat George Mason 69-67, and UConn edged Cincinnati in overtime 72-71.
In women's college basketball, Syracuse defeated Louisville 59-51.
In men's top-25 basketball, Butler worked its way up The Associated Press men's basketball poll by winning 15 of its first 16 games. The Bulldogs could find themselves out of the top-20 following their fifth loss in eight games. Markus Howard scored 17 points and Marquette avenged last month's four-point loss to Butler by drubbing the 19th-ranked Bulldogs, 76-57. Brendan Bailey and Kobe McEwen each added 16 points in helping the Golden Eagles improve to 17-6. McEwen hit back-to-back 3 pointers and Bailey followed with another to give the Golden Eagles a 62-45 lead with 6:09 remaining. Kamar Baldwin had 24 points for Butler, which was coming off a three-point victory against No. 10 Villanova.
Houston was the only other ranked team in action Sunday, and the 25th-ranked Cougars took over first place in the American Athletic Conference by stifling Wichita State, 76-43. Quentin Grimes had 14 points and six rebounds for Houston, while teammate DeJon Jarreau added 12 points and seven rebounds. The Cougars are 19-5 following their seventh win in eight games.
Kaapo Kakko's first goal since Jan. 2 was the eventual game-winner in the Rangers' fourth victory in six games, 4-1 against the Kings. Greg McKegg put the Rangers ahead 2:33 into the game. Artemi Panarin added his team-best 28th goal and rookie Igor Shesterkin made 42 saves for his fifth win in six starts.
Ryan Miller beat his ex-team by making 15 of his 31 saves in the third period of Anaheim's 3-2 verdict over the Sabres in Buffalo. Jakob Silfverberg, Ryan Getzlaf and Nick Ritchie staked Anaheim to a 3-0 lead by scoring over a 5:45 span in the first period before the Ducks closed out a 3-0-2 road trip. Jonas Johansson surrendered three goals on Anaheim's first six shots as the Sabres dropped to 2-5-1 in their last eight games.
The Boston Bruins own the NHL's top point total despite an 0-2 record against the league's worst team. Andreas Athanasiou provided the go-ahead and insurance goals to send the Red Wings past the Bruins, 3-1. Athanasiou broke a 1-1 deadlock with a power-play goal 7:10 into the third period and clinched it with an empty-netter. Jonathan Bernier was outstanding in goal while the Red Wings were being outshot, 40-20. Brendan Perlini also scored for the Wings, who have won two of three since a nine-game losing streak. Torey Krug had a third-period goal for the Bruins, who ended a six-game winning streak. Boston continues to lead the overall standings by three points over Washington. Tampa Bay is third overall and still five points behind the Bruins atop the Atlantic Division.
Second-period goals by Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog pushed the Avalanche past the Wild, 3-2. MacKinnon's power-play goal broke a 1-1 tie, just over three minutes before Landeskog gave Colorado a two-goal cushion. Pavel Francouz stopped 34 shots in the Avs' fourth straight win and seventh in eight games.
The Jets fell behind 2-0 before Kyle Connor furnished two goals and an assist in Winnipeg's 5-2 win against the Blackhawks. Andrew Copp notched the go-ahead goal with 6:33 remaining before Patrick Laine and Connor added empty-netters. The Jets have won three straight and are 4-0-1 in their last five games.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Alex Bowman are the first two drivers to qualify for next Sunday's Daytona 500. Stenhouse captured the pole with a top lap of 194.582 mph in his first qualifier for JTG-Daugherty Racing, which signed him after he was fired by Roush Fenway Racing last season. Bowman will start on the outside of the front row after posting a top lap of 194.363 mph. The starting order for the rest of the 40-car field will be determined by Thursday's two qualifying races at Daytona International Speedway. Chase Elliott was third in Sunday's qualifying, followed by Jimmie Johnson and defending champion Denny Hamlin.
The Red Sox and Dodgers have reworked a deal that is sending outfielder Mookie Betts and pitcher David Price to Los Angeles. A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells The Associated Press that the Red Sox are receiving outfielder Alex Verdugo and prospects Jeter Downs and Connor Wong for Betts and Price. Boston was to send cash to the Dodgers to offset Price's salary, reportedly half of the $96 million still owed to the 2012 AL Cy Young Award winner. The Red Sox, Dodgers and Twins had a tentative deal in place last week that included Minnesota prospect Brusdar Graterol to Boston. The trade fell apart when Boston had issues over Graterol's arm health. Instead the Twins are sending Graterol to Los Angeles for Kenta Maeda.
Two-time All-Star pitcher Charlie Morton says he regrets not doing anything to try to stop the Houston Astros from illegally stealing signs and relaying information to their hitters during the team's 2017 World Series championship season. Morton helped the Astros win the 2017 title in his first season with the team, winning Game 7 of both the ALCS and World Series. He says he's not sure what he could have done to stop his former teammates and doesn't recall specifics about who did what wrong in 2017. Morton spent one more season with the Astros before signing a two-year deal with the Rays last winter.
Nick Taylor has captured his second PGA title and first since his fourth career start in 2015. The Canadian handled high winds to capture the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am by four strokes over Kevin Streelman. Taylor built a five-stroke lead by the turn and dealt with 40 mph gusts blasting the Monterey Peninsula. Taylor closed with a 2-under 70 for a 19 under total. Streelman finished with a 68. Phil Mickelson got within two shots with four holes to play before signing off on a 74 that left him alone in third place.
Korea's Hee Young Park parred the fourth hole of a three-way playoff to win the LPGA Tour's Victoria Open, beating compatriots Hye-Jin Choi and So Yeon Ryu. Former world No. 1 Ryu dropped out on the second playoff hole when she missed a birdie putt, but Park and Choi continued until luck and nature intervened. Choi's tee shot on the fourth playoff hole came to rest against a pine cone in light rough left of the fairway, leaving her with no choice but to chip out. The chip fell short and her next shot reached a hazard before she reached the fringe of the green in six.
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