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NBA: Nets stretch winning streak with win over Cavs

CLEVELAND (AP) — Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant each scored 32 points and the Nets extended their longest winning streak since moving to Brooklyn to nine games with a 125-117 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday (Dec. 26) night.

The Nets withstood a sensational 46-point performance by Darius Garland, who single-handedly kept the Cavs close in the fourth.

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) drives against Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (45) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Dec. 26, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)
Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) drives against Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (45) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Dec. 26, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

Brooklyn has won 13 of 14 and is beginning to look like an NBA title contender.

T.J. Warren added a season-high 23 points for the Nets, who handled one of the teams they’re chasing in the Eastern Conference standings after beating Milwaukee by 18 last Friday.

Durant moved past Tim Duncan (26,496) into 15th place on the career scoring list.

Irving made a season-high seven 3-pointers — and two key free throws with 41.1 seconds left — while being booed nearly every time he touched the ball by fans who cheered him during six seasons with Cleveland.

Houston Rockets guard Jalen Green (4) drives to the basket against Chicago Bulls guard Ayo Dosunmu (12) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 26, 2022, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Quinn Harris)
Houston Rockets guard Jalen Green (4) drives to the basket against Chicago Bulls guard Ayo Dosunmu (12) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 26, 2022, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Quinn Harris)

ROCKETS 133, BULLS 118
CHICAGO — Kevin Porter Jr. scored a season-high 36 points and Houston used a 17-1 run in the third quarter to beat Chicago, snapping a five-game losing streak.

Alperan Sengun added 25 points and Jalen Green had 24 for the Rockets, who scored the first 10 points of the game but blew an 18-point lead before their third-quarter spurt.

DeMar DeRozan scored 31 for the Bulls, who won their previous three games. DeRozan passed George Gervin for 44th place on the career scoring list with 20,727 points.

New Orleans Pelicans center Jaxson Hayes (10) and Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton, right, battle for the ball next to Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas (17) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Monday, Dec. 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)
New Orleans Pelicans center Jaxson Hayes (10) and Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton, right, battle for the ball next to Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas (17) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Monday, Dec. 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

PELICANS 113, PACERS 93
NEW ORLEANS — Naji Marshall scored a career-high 22 points, Jonas Valanciunas had 20 points and 12 rebounds, and short-handed New Orleans extended its winning streak to three games by beating Indiana.

CJ McCollum added 19 points for the Pelicans, who were missing top scorer Zion Williamson along with Brandon Ingram, Herb Jones and Trey Murphy III.

Rookie guard Bennedict Mathurin led the Pacers with 15 points in 22 minutes off the bench. Myles Turner scored 14.

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