CLEVELAND— Nikola Vucevic scored 23 points and the Orlando Magic snapped a 17-game losing streak against the Cleveland Cavaliers, routing the defending Eastern Conference champions 114-93 on Saturday night.
Orlando’s first win over Cleveland since Nov. 23, 2012, came in convincing fashion. The Magic never trailed and built a 21-point lead late in the first quarter. Orlando led 36-18 after the first, hitting 14 of 24 from the field.
The Magic, who made 14 of 35 3-pointers, took their biggest lead, 106-69, midway through the fourth quarter when both teams cleared their benches.
LeBron James scored 14 points in the first quarter and finished with 22 as the Cavaliers lost for the first time in three games.
GRIZZLIES 111, WARRIORS 101
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) – Marc Gasol had 34 points and 14 rebounds, and Memphis built a 19-point third-quarter lead over Golden State.
James Ennis III added 13 points, and Tyreke Evans had 12 as Memphis shot 47 per cent compared to 39 per cent for Golden State. The Warriors shot 12 of 38 from 3-point range.
Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 37 points, and Kevin Durant added 29 points and 13 rebounds. But both were ejected with 43.6 seconds left after arguing with officials – Curry first after throwing his mouthpiece, and then Durant as he followed Curry’s argument.
JAZZ 96, THUNDER 87
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) – Rudy Gobert had 16 points and 13 rebounds to lead Utah past Oklahoma City..
The Jazz never trailed after taking a 13-12 lead in the first quarter.
Oklahoma City’s All-Star trio of Russell Westbrook, Paul George and Carmelo Anthony were bottled up in the first half by an active Utah defence. By the time George and Anthony got going, the come-from-behind climb was too steep. Anthony scored a game-high 26 and George added 22.
Westbrook was held to six points on 2-for-11 shooting. He was held to single digits just twice in the two previous regular seasons.
BUCKS 113, TRAIL BLAZERS 110
MILWAUKEE (AP) – Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 17 of his career-high 44 points in the fourth quarter, and he gave Milwaukee the lead for good on a breakaway dunk with 11 seconds left.
With Portland leading 110-109, the Trail Blazers lost the ball and Antetokounmpo’s thunderous dunk put the Bucks ahead. After a timeout, Damian Lillard found Jusef Nurkic running down the lane, but Antetokounmpo blocked his shot at the basket, sending the 7-foot centre crashing to the floor.
Khris Middleton was fouled and made both free throws to close the scoring.
Lillard scored 16 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter. CJ McCollum also had 26.
Antetokounmpo made 17 of 23 shots and had eight rebounds and four assists.
ROCKETS 107, MAVERICKS 91
HOUSTON (AP) – James Harden scored 29 points and Houston beat Dallas in its their home opener.
Playing without point guard Chris Paul, who is week-to-week with a left knee injury, Harden frequently bulldozed his way into the paint for layups while also keeping hot from beyond the arc. Harden made six of 13 3-pointers and added seven assists in 29 minutes.
Houston improved to 3-0 for the first time since the 2014-15 season when it started 6-0. Dallas fell to 0-3 for the first time since the 2011-12 season, which followed their NBA title run in 2010-11.
Yogi Ferrell and J.J. Barea each had 19 points for Dallas.
PISTONS 111, KNICKS 107.
NEW YORK (AP) – Tobias Harris scored 22 of his 31 points in the second half, and Detroit erased a 21-point deficit to beat New York.
Harris was one of the many Pistons who had little going to start the Pistons’ second game in two nights, but they turned it around after halftime to spoil the Knicks’ home opener.
Kristaps Porzingis scored 33 points, but New York fell to 0-2 after losing to former Knicks star Carmelo Anthony and Oklahoma City in its opener.
Andre Drummond had 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Pistons.
HEAT 112, PACERS 108
MIAMI (AP) – Goran Dragic scored 23 points, Dion Waiters added 19 and Miami opened its home schedule with a victory over Indiana.
James Johnson scored 14 points and Kelly Olynyk added 13 for the Heat, who wasted nearly all of what was a 21-point lead before hanging on in the final moments. Josh Richardson added 12 for Miami.
Victor Oladipo scored 28 points for Indiana.
RAPTORS 128, 76ERS 94
TORONTO (AP) – DeMar DeRozan scored 30 points, Serge Ibaka had 21 and Toronto won its 10th straight home game over Philadelphia.
Kyle Lowry scored 17 points, Jakob Poeltl had a career-high 14 and the Raptors won for the 16th time in 17 meetings with the 76ers. The 34-point margin of victory was Toronto’s biggest ever over Philadelphia, eclipsing a 32-point win on Nov. 9, 2014.
Ben Simmons had 18 points and 10 rebounds for the 76ers.
NUGGETS 96, KINGS 79
DENVER (AP) – Paul Millsap had 18 points and nine rebounds in his first home game with Denver, Gary Harris scored 17 points and the Nuggets used a strong defensive effort to beat Sacramento.
Kenneth Faried had 18 points and eight rebounds and Will Barton scored 15 points to help Denver win its home opener. Rookie De’Aaron Fox led the Kings with 18 points.
SPURS 87, BULLS 77
CHICAGO (AP) – LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 points and 10 rebounds and the San Antonio beat Chicago in the Bulls’ home opener.
Aldridge scored 12 points in a 22-13 run that gave San Antonio a 63-51 third-quarter lead. He signed a three-year contract extension a day before the season began.
Rudy Gay added 12 points for the Spurs, playing without All-Star forward Kawhi Leonard (right quadriceps tendinopathy).
Robin Lopez had 16 points and seven rebounds for the Bulls.
CLIPPERS 130, SUNS 88
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Blake Griffin had 29 points and eight rebounds, Patrick Beverley added 15 points and six steals, and Los Angeles cruised past Phoenix.
The Clippers took control early in the second half of their home opener and never looked back. Their starters did not play in the fourth quarter. Los Angeles also saw starting point guard Milos Teodosic carried off the floor with a foot injury.
The young Suns played Friday night at home and struggled to get into any offensive flow against Los Angeles. Center Alex Len led Phoenix with 15 points – including nine free throws.
Guard Lou Williams added 18 points, and Danilo Gallinari and Willie Reed 12 points each for the Clippers.