TOR holds off Harden, HOU
DeMar DeRozan scored 27 points and the Toronto Raptors built a big lead in the first half and held on for a 129-113 victory against the Rockets last night in Houston.
James Harden had 38 points and made 19-of-19 foul shots for the Rockets, who ended a six-game winning streak. Houston scored six straight points, including three free throws from Harden, to make it 108-103 with 71⁄2 minutes left.
Delon Wright made a free throw for the Raptors soon after that, and OG Anunoby connected for Toronto’s first field goal in more than three minutes on a 3-pointer with 6:25 remaining. After Wright’s layup, Kyle Lowry stole the ball from Harden, and DeRozan finished on the other end with a dunk to make it 116-103.
Harden got Houston going again with a four-point play. The free throw was his 19th, setting a franchise record for most foul shots without a miss in a game.
DeRozan and Serge Ibaka had back-to-back dunks after Harden’s big play to make it 120-107 with about three minutes left and send many of the home fans toward the exits.
Harden had 11 assists and six rebounds. He has scored at least 20 points and had seven or more assists in every game this season.
Toronto’s C.J. Miles opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer to make it 106-94.
The Raptors scored the first five points of the second half to make it 81-64 and pushed their lead to 19 points midway through the third when Lowry made a 3-pointer. Toronto led by 21 before Houston made five straight points, capped by a 3-point play by Tarik Black. The Rockets used a 9-3 spurt after that to cut the lead to 97-87.
Spurs 97, Mavericks 91 — LaMarcus Aldridge scored a season-high 32 points in his hometown and San Antonio downed host Dallas.
Gregg Popovich became the fastest NBA coach to 500 road wins. He got there in 835 away games, 41 fewer than Pat Riley.
Patty Mills added a season-high 19 points for the Spurs.
Rookie Dennis Smith Jr. led Dallas with a careerhigh 27 points, and J.J. Barea and Harrison Barnes had 16 each. The Mavericks are just 2-13 for the second straight season and fifth time overall.
Aldridge was hit with a technical foul with 3:33 left in the second quarter for shoving the Mavericks’ Salah Mejri after a scrap under the basket.