James Harden criticised the referees for letting the game "get out of hand" as the Houston Rockets fell to a disappointing 121-93 defeat at the Philadelphia 76ers.

For the 20th consecutive game Harden had a 30-point match, but it was a generally poor shooting performance from the Rockets.

Harden, though, felt the contest changed course towards the end of the second quarter, where he had issues with both Joel Embiid and Corey Brewer.

"Late in that second quarter [it changed], man, we let the game get out of hand," said Harden, in quotes reported by ESPN. 

"[The] referees let the game get out of hand. It's kind of hard to come back from a 15-point deficit - especially on the road against a good team.

"There were a couple [of] questionable calls that they got away with that changed the game, especially [when] we're already outnumbered a little bit. 

"We are trying to figure out a way to win the game, and I let it get out of hand. But, like I said, we'll figure it out."

Harden's remarkable streak of 30-point games means he joins the legendary Wilt Chamberlain as the only players to have a tally in the 20s.

Chamberlain had runs of 20, 25, 31 and 65 during his career and Harden is delighted to be in such esteemed company.

"Wilt was doing some obviously unbelievable things and numbers that nobody will ever catch," he added. 

"Just to be in the same conversation as those guys is just credit to the work I put in. That's what you play this game for, to be listed with those guys, those top players.

"Obviously, I got a long way to go, but this is a pretty cool beginning."

The Philadelphia 76ers had an answer for Houston Rockets star James Harden in a huge win in the NBA on Monday.

While Harden managed to have his 20th consecutive game scoring 30 or more points, Philadelphia kept him under the dangerous 40-point mark and handed Houston their largest loss of the season, 121-93.

Joel Embiid finished with a team-high 32 points and 14 rebounds. He also played an important role on defense with Jimmy Butler sidelined because of a sprained wrist. Embiid finished with three blocks.

JJ Redick and Corey Brewer added 16 and 11 points, respectively. Landry Shamet had 18 points off the bench.

Harden scored 37 points in the Rockets' losing efforts. The 2018 MVP got off to a hot start and scored 27 in the first half.

The Rockets trailed by 15 points at the half and a 13-point performance in the third quarter put Houston in a deficit they could not bounce back from.

Gerald Green chipped in 18 points off the bench. Kenneth Faried added 13 in his first game with the Rockets.

 

Doncic dynamic but Mavericks lose

Luka Doncic became the second-youngest player in NBA history to record a triple-double. The 19-year-old rookie finished with 18 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in the Dallas Mavericks' 116-106 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.

Klay Thompson set an NBA record in the Golden State Warriors' rout of the Los Angeles Lakers. The four-time All-Star became the first player to make 10 consecutive three-pointers without a miss. He finished with 44 points in 26 minutes. Thompson was 17 of 20 from the field and 10 of 11 from long distance. Golden State went on to win 130-111.

Brooklyn Nets guard D'Angelo Russell had 31 points in his team's 123-94 win over the Sacramento Kings. Russell shot 48 per cent from the field and 50 per cent from three-point range.

Nikola Vucevic used a double-double to help push the Magic ahead of the hosting Atlanta Hawks. Vucevic finished with 29 points and 14 rebounds in Orlando's 122-103 win.

Thunder forward Paul George had his second consecutive game scoring 31 points. The forward led Oklahoma City to a 127-109 win over the New York Knicks.

 

Cavs continue to crash

The Cleveland Cavaliers' loss to the Chicago Bulls moved them to 9-39. Starters Rodney Hood and Alec Burks did not provide much help in the 104-88 rout. Hood finished with just four points on one-of-eight shooting while Burks had a lone three-pointer in 17 minutes of play.

JaMychal Green and Shelvin Mack scored little off the bench for the Memphis Grizzlies. The two finished minus-17 in Memphis' 105-85 loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. 

 

Antetokounmpo welcomes Doncic

The Mavs rookie impressed, but Giannis Antetokounmpo made sure to give Doncic his own special welcome. Antetokounmpo had a game-high 31 points in the Bucks' win.

No one could stop Zach LaVine. He had a game-high 25 points in Chicago's first win in the new year, including a one-handed dunk.

Kyrie Irving tallied eight steals to go along with 26 points in the Boston Celtics' 107-99 win over the Miami Heat.

Monday's results

Oklahoma City Thunder 127-109 New York Knicks
Chicago Bulls 104-88 Cleveland Cavaliers
Milwaukee Bucks 116-106 Dallas Mavericks
Washington Wizards 101-87 Detroit Pistons
Orlando Magic 122-103 Atlanta Hawks
Brooklyn Nets 123-94 Sacramento Kings
New Orleans Pelicans 105-85 Memphis Grizzlies
Boston Celtics 107-99 Miami Heat
Philadelphia 76ers 121-93 Houston Rockets
Portland Trail Blazers 109-104 Utah Jazz
Golden State Warriors 130-111 Los Angeles Lakers

 

Clippers at Mavericks

When the Mavs host the Clippers on Tuesday, they will likely see the return of Dennis Smith Jr, who has missed the past five games because of a back injury and illness while also being at the center of trade rumours. He will join Doncic as they try to break Dallas' four-game losing streak. Los Angeles will enter the matchup off their first win in six games.

Jimmy Butler missed the Philadelphia 76ers’ game on Tuesday against the Houston Rockets with a sprained right wrist.

The 29-year-old forward originally suffered the injury in Philadelphia's 117-115 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder last weekend.

He is listed as day-to-day and considered questionable for the team's matchup with the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday.

"It isn't something that we are, or he is, worried about in the sense of this is a lingering, long-term thing," Sixers coach Brett Brown told reporters, via the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Butler is averaging 19 points and 4.8 rebounds in 28 games with the 76ers. He is shooting 47.5 per cent from the field and 38.6 per cent from three-point range.

Butler demanded to be moved away from the Timberwolves before the start of the season. Minnesota eventually sent him to the 76ers in mid-November in exchange for a package centred around Robert Covington and Dario Saric.

Philadelphia entered their matchup against Houston with a 30-17 record.

The Houston Rockets keep finding a way to win after James Harden inspired a 138-134 overtime win against the Los Angeles Lakers.

"F*** no" was the response when Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook was asked if he was cool with Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid.

Westbrook and Embiid have history and their feud reignited in Oklahoma City's dramatic 117-115 NBA victory in Philadelphia on Saturday.

After landing heavily on the court following a foul by Embiid, Westbrook took exception and tried to charge at the 76ers All-Star in the fourth quarter before being restrained.

Embiid also waved Westbrook goodbye after the 2017 MVP fouled out during the closing stages.

Discussing Embiid's foul, Westbrook told reporters: "I don't think he just landed on me. He added a little bit extra to it but that's okay."

Asked if he was "cool" with Embiid, Westbrook - who posted a double-double of 21 points and 10 rebounds - emphatically replied: "F*** no!"

Westbrook and Embiid's feud dates back to December 2017, when the latter waved goodbye to the Oklahoma City crowd after Steven Adams fouled out of that clash.

The Thunder, though, went on to beat the 76ers and Westbrook mocked Embiid's wave amid the celebrations.

Embiid then posterised Westbrook and stared down the Thunder star when the two teams met again in January last year.

Speaking to the media following Saturday's two-point loss, Embiid - who finished with 31 points - said: "I don't know why he [Westbrook] was mad, but he's always in his feelings."

The Los Angeles Lakers dropped the Thunder 138-128 in overtime on Thursday, but Lonzo Ball did his best to give Oklahoma City a chance.

Up 122-119 with less than five seconds to play, the Lakers wanted to foul and take the three-point possibility out of the Thunder's hands.

And Ball did foul – just like his team-mates and coach were telling him to do from the sideline. The problem, however, was he managed to let time run off the clock and fouled Russell Westbrook in the act of shooting, which put him on the line with a chance to tie the game.

Westbrook did just that by knocking down all three shots.

Westbrook may not have actually been in the act of shooting. He threw up a shot when Ball touched him and he appeared to be on the ground when doing so. But the referee called the foul despite LeBron James' confusion online.

"So what really is "in the shooting motion" rule?!?!?" James wrote on Twitter. "Asking for a friend @OfficialNBARefs."

It was an unfortunate and bad play from Ball, but the good thing was the second-year player came out and hit two three-pointers to start overtime for the Lakers.

While he extended the team's game, he made sure it would not go past one extra frame and the Lakers (25-21) have now won two games in a row and four of their last six. The Thunder are 26-18 and have lost five of their last six.

 

Brilliant Booker

Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker had 30 points, eight assists and two rebounds in a 111-109 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

Jimmy Butler had an extremely efficient night in the Philadelphia 76ers' 120-96 win over the Indiana Pacers. He scored 27 points on 10-of-17 shooting, went six of six from the free-throw line, added eight assists and five rebounds while tallying zero turnovers.

Knicks guard Emmanuel Mudiay had 25 points, seven rebounds and two assists in New York's 101-100 loss to the Washington Wizards.

Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen scored 27 points on 10-of-18 shooting with 10 rebounds in Chicago's 135-105 loss to the Denver Nuggets.

 

Biyombo struggles for Hornets

It is really hard to be minus-13 when you do not put up a single shot, but Bismack Biyombo pulled it off in the Charlotte Hornets' 114-95 win over the Sacramento Kings.

 

Siakam the hero

Pascal Siakam is not the first player you would think of that would hit a game-winning buzzer-beater for the Raptors but that is exactly what he did in their victory over the Suns.

Thursday's results

Washington Wizards 101-100 New York Knicks
Charlotte Hornets 114-95 Sacramento Kings
Philadelphia 76ers 120-96 Indiana Pacers
Toronto Raptors 111-109 Phoenix Suns
Denver Nuggets 135-105 Chicago Bulls
Los Angeles Lakers 138-128 Oklahoma City Thunder

 

Warriors at Clippers

It is DeMarcus Cousins' Golden State Warriors debut. The Warriors already set scoring records and three-point records this week without Cousins. Imagine them with him.

NBA champions the Golden State Warriors enjoyed a record-breaking performance after crushing the Denver Nuggets 142-111.

Jimmy Butler revelled in the Philadelphia 76ers' 149-107 rout of his former team the Minnesota Timberwolves in the NBA.

The Philadelphia 76ers acquired a new forward after signing veteran Corey Brewer to a 10-day contract.

NBA Eastern Conference contenders Philadelphia announced Brewer's short-term deal on Tuesday.

Brewer appeared in 72 games in 2017-18, splitting time between the Los Angeles Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder. 

The 32-year-old averaged 5.3 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 16.8 minutes per game for the season.

Philadelphia are fourth in the Eastern Conference and could use some depth on the wing. Jimmy Butler and Furkan Korkmaz are the only players listed as small forwards on the team's 15-man roster.

The 76ers will face the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday.

Kawhi Leonard led the way as the Toronto Raptors outlasted the Washington Wizards 140-138 after double overtime in the NBA.

Leonard posted 41 points and 11 rebounds on Sunday to guide the Raptors in a marathon shoot-out, while Pascal Siakam had an impressive 24 points and 19 rebounds.

On the other side, Bradley Beal recorded 43 points, 10 rebounds and 15 assists in Washington's losing effort. 

Bradley became just the second player in NBA history to record multiple 40-10-15 games in one season. Oscar Robertson also accomplished the feat in 1961-62. 

Beal's performance, however, was not enough as the Wizards dropped to 18-26. Meanwhile, Eastern Conference leaders the Raptors improved to 33-12.

 

Harden ties Bryant's record

James Harden had 38 points and 12 rebounds in the Houston Rockets' 116-109 loss to the Magic. Harden extended his 30-point game streak to 16 games, tying Kobe Bryant's all-time record.

Stephen Curry hit 11 shots from behind the arc in a 48-point performance as the Golden State Warriors topped the Dallas Mavericks 119-114.

Nikola Jokic notched 40 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Denver Nuggets past the Portland Trail Blazers 116-113.

 

Lin struggles as Hawks fall

Jeremy Lin scored seven points on two-of-10 shooting as the Atlanta Hawks fell short to the Milwaukee Bucks 133-114.

Josh Hart scored nine points for the Los Angeles Lakers on three-of-12 shooting in a 102-95 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

 

Doncic dazzles, Simmons sizzles

Luka Doncic sliced through the defense with a cut to the basket and finished strong at the rim.

Ben Simmons converted this lob with flair as the Philadelphia 76ers beat the New York Knicks 108-105 on the road.

 

Sunday's results

Toronto Raptors 140-138 Washington Wizards (OT)
Philadelphia 76ers 108-105 New York Knicks
Milwaukee Bucks 133-114 Atlanta Hawks
Orlando Magic 116-109 Houston Rockets
Golden State Warriors 119-114 Dallas Mavericks
Denver Nuggets 116-113 Portland Trail Blazers
Cleveland Cavaliers 101-95 Los Angeles Lakers

 

Trail Blazers at Kings

Portland's exceptional guard play has helped lift the team to fourth in the Western Conference, while the Sacramento Kings' young team are hovering just outside of the playoff picture, sitting in 10th place. This matchup should be an exciting offensive showcase.

Luka Doncic starred to lead the Dallas Mavericks to a thrilling win over the Minnesota Timberwolves in the NBA on Friday.

Doncic hit three straight go-ahead shots in the final two minutes to lead Dallas to a 119-115 victory.

His first shot came in the paint to give the Mavs a 112-111 lead, his second gave them a 114-113 advantage and the third was on a transition three-pointer to give Dallas a lead they would never relinquish.

The 19-year-old scored 29 points to go with 12 assists and eight rebounds to lead the way for the Mavericks.

Huerter produces big performance

Hawks rookie Kevin Huerter scored a career-high 29 points in Atlanta's 123-121 win over the 76ers.

Wizards guard Tomas Satoransky tallied his first career triple-double with 18 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists in Washington's 113-106 win over a Giannis Antetokounmpo-less Bucks team.

Rockets star James Harden stayed hot, tallying another 40-point triple-double with 43 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds in a 141-113 win over the Cavaliers.

 

Dinwiddie dire for Nets

Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie did not have his best game as he scored eight points on one-of-seven shooting off the bench in Brooklyn's 122-105 loss to the Raptors. Brooklyn were minus-24 with Dinwiddie on the floor.

 

Sabonis throws one down

Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis threw one down in the Pacers' 121-106 win over the Knicks.

Friday's results

Atlanta Hawks 123-121 Philadelphia 76ers
Washington Wizards 113-106 Milwaukee Bucks
Indiana Pacers 121-106 New York Knicks
Toronto Raptors 122-105 Brooklyn Nets
Houston Rockets 141-113 Cleveland Cavaliers
Dallas Mavericks 119-115 Minnesota Timberwolves
Portland Trail Blazers 127-96 Charlotte Hornets
Utah Jazz 113-95 Los Angeles lakers
Golden State Warriors 146-109 Chicago Bulls

 

Spurs at Thunder

The Spurs and Thunder are coming off of one of the best games of the season in a double-overtime thriller Thursday and could deliver again.

The Milwaukee Bucks managed to overcome a big performance from James Harden to top the Houston Rockets 116-109 in the NBA. 

Andrew Wiggins inspired the Minnesota Timberwolves to a win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday.

The Timberwolves travelled to Oklahoma City and handed the Thunder a 119-117 loss.

Russell Westbrook, Paul George and Steven Adams all totalled more than 20 points for the Thunder but they could not will themselves past a streaking Wiggins, who recorded a game-high 40 points on 11-of-24 shooting. He also grabbed 10 rebounds.

Karl-Anthony Towns chipped in 20 points and nine rebounds of his own for Minnesota. 

George, Westbrook and Adams scored 27, 25 and 20 points respectively.

The win was the first for new Timberwolves coach Ryan Saunders, who took over after the team fired Tom Thibodeau on Sunday.

The Thunder dropped to 25-15 while the Timberwolves improved to 20-21.

Jokic lifts Nuggets

Nikola Jokic had a triple-double in a 103-99 win for the Nuggets against the Heat. He recorded 29 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists.

Landry Shamet scored a career-high 29 points and made eight three-pointers for the 76ers in a 132-115 win over the Wizards.

Kawhi Leonard tallied 31 points on 11-of-18 shooting as the Raptors topped the Hawks 104-101.

Klay Thompson erupted for 43 points on 18-of-29 shooting in a 122-95 victory for the Warriors over the Knicks.

 

Curry struggles for Warriors

Stephen Curry tallied 14 points but shot just five of 19 from the field.

Bogdan Bogdanovic scored seven points on three-of-11 shooting as the Kings fell to the Suns 115-111.

 

Curry provides clever assist

Curry dished a no-look assist to a slashing Kevon Looney for a slam.

De'Aaron Fox tracked down De'Anthony Melton in transition and pinned a layup against the backboard.

Tuesday's results

Indiana Pacers 123-115 Cleveland Cavaliers
Philadelphia 76ers 132-115 Washington Wizards
Denver Nuggets 103-99 Miami Heat
Toronto Raptors 104-101 Atlanta Hawks
Minnesota Timberwolves 119-117 Oklahoma City Thunder
Phoenix Suns 115-111 Sacramento Kings
Golden State Warriors 122-95 New York Knicks
Los Angeles Clippers 128-109 Charlotte Hornets

 

Bucks at Rockets

Houston have been one of the toughest teams to beat, especially at home. Milwaukee will have to step into the Toyota Center and top a Rockets team that have won their past 10 home games. Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden will be looking to lead their respective sides to victory.

Robert Covington learned he was traded from the Philadelphia 76ers to the Minnesota Timberwolves the same way almost everyone else did – via social media.

Jimmy Butler denied confronting Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown, insisting it was just a "player to coach talk".

According to reports, four-time NBA All-Star Butler "aggressively challenged" Brown during a film session in Portland and some within the organisation considered his behaviour "disrespectful".

Butler, however, told reporters on Monday that the conversation was not "confrontational".

"I don't think any part of it was confrontational, just a coach to player talk, a player to coach talk," Butler said, via NBC Sports Philadelphia.

"It just happened to be in front of everybody. I think we got away from it great, and we got better as a team."

Last week, 76ers boss Brown said the report was "unfair" to Butler and added Monday he does not think the forward did anything wrong.

"I never felt like there was any, what was the word, aggressive?" Brown said. "It was two people talking. ... It doesn't mean that something that is challenging is disrespectful. ... I like the dialogue."

The 76ers acquired Butler – who sought a trade – from the Minnesota Timberwolves in mid-November in exchange for a package centred around Dario Saric and Robert Covington.

Butler is averaging 18 points and 4.7 rebounds in 31.7 minutes per game with Philadelphia.

The 76ers will host the Washington Wizards on Tuesday, entering the matchup with a 26-14 record in the Eastern Conference.

 

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