Gabe Vincent and Tyler Herro each scored 20 points, and the Miami Heat improved their standing atop the Eastern Conference by topping the Chicago Bulls 112-99 on Monday night.
Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo each had 15 points for Miami, which has won nine of its last 10 games. Max Strus had all 13 of his points in the fourth quarter for the Heat.
Chicago guard DeMar DeRozan’s streak of 10 consecutive games with at least 30 points ended; he finished with 18. Zach LaVine led the Bulls with 22 points, while Ayo Dosunmu had 18 and Nikola Vucevic added 14 for Chicago.
It was a big win for the Heat on multiple levels.
They moved two games clear of the second-place Bulls in the Eastern Conference standings, Miami’s largest lead yet this season. And the Heat are now 3-0 against Chicago, ensuring Miami would hold a head-to-head tiebreaker over the Bulls if one is needed to determine seeding.
GRIZZLIES 118, SPURS 105
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Ja Morant threw down a massive dunk over 7-footer Jakob Poeltl and scored a career-high 52 points, lifting Memphis over San Antonio.
The arena was still buzzing from Morant’s fast-break slam late in the second quarter when Steven Adams delivered a length-of-the-court pass to Morant, who knocked down a buzzer-beater from the left baseline for a 68-58 halftime lead.
De’Anthony Melton added 15 points for Memphis, while Tyus Jones scored 13.
Lonnie Walker IV led the Spurs with 22 points, and Dejounte Murray added 21 points and eight assists before being ejected late in the fourth quarter.
TIMBERWOLVES 127, CAVALIERS 122
CLEVELAND (AP) — Karl-Anthony Towns hit a 3-pointer with 11.8 seconds left and Minnesota survived Cleveland’s comeback try.
Towns’ first 3 of the game helped the Timberwolves hang on after blowing a 23-point third-quarter lead.
D’Angelo Russell scored 25 points and Towns had 17 as Minnesota handed Cleveland its first home loss in nearly two months.
Kevin Love led the Cavaliers with 26 points, and Jarrett Allen had 21. Brandon Goodwin had 17 points and 12 assists for the Cavs while starting in place of injured All-Star guard Darius Garland’.
RAPTORS 133, NETS 97
NEW YORK (AP) — Scottie Barnes made his first 11 shots and had 28 points and a season-high 16 rebounds, leading Toronto over Brooklyn in the opener of a home-and-home series.
Barnes was 10 for 10 at halftime, the first rookie to be perfect on 10 or more shots in a half since Derrick Rose on March 18, 2009, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Precious Achiuwa had 20 points and eight rebounds for the Raptors, who played without All-Star guard Fred VanVleet because of a sore right knee. VanVleet replacement Malachi Flynn scored 18 points.
LaMarcus Aldridge scored 15 points, and Cam Thomas and Bruce Brown had 14 as the Nets lost for the 14th time in 17 games..
MAGIC 119, PACERS 103
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Wendell Carter Jr. had 21 points and 12 rebounds and eight Orlando players scored in double figures in the win over Indiana.
Mo Bamba and Franz Wagner had 15 points apiece for Orlando.
The game marked the return of Magic guard Markelle Fultz, who tore his left ACL almost 14 months ago. Fultz had 10 points and six assists in 16 minutes, leaving the game with the Magic up by 16 points in the middle of the fourth quarter.
Tyrese Haliburton had 23 points and seven assists for the Pacers, and Buddy Hield added 18 points.
KINGS 131, THUNDER 110
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — DeAaron Fox had 29 points and 10 assists, and Sacramento beat Oklahoma City to snap a four-game losing streak.
Trey Lyles scored 24 points and Harrison Barnes scored 23 for the Kings. Domantas Sabonis added 14 points, 16 rebounds and seven assists.
Oklahoma City’s Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had his third consecutive game with at least 30 points since returning from a sprained right ankle, scoring 37 points and dishing out 10 assists.
BUCKS 130, HORNETS 106
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo had 26 points and 16 rebounds and Milwaukee scored a season-high 44 points in the second quarter on the way to beating Charlotte.
Jrue Holiday had 21 points and eight assists, and Bobby Portis added 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Bucks.
LaMelo Ball scored 24 points to lead Charlotte. Terry Rozier finished with 17 points and eight assists.
Milwaukee made its first 26 free throws and finished 32 of 37 from the line. Antetokounmpo made all 14 of his free throws.
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George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism