Jayson Tatum scored 26 of his season high-tying 45 points in the fourth quarter and overtime and the Boston Celtics remained unbeaten at home with a 127-120 victory Wednesday over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Jaylen Brown added 35 points and 11 rebounds to help the Celtics improve to 18-0 at home for the first time in franchise history. They have won 25 consecutive regular-season home games, dating back to last March.

Anthony Edwards scored 29 points and Karl-Anthony Towns had 25 with 13 rebounds for the Western Conference-leading Timberwolves, who trail only Boston overall.

Tatum scored the game’s final nine points after Nickeil Alexander-Walker’s 3-pointer with 2:44 left in overtime gave Minnesota a 120-118 lead.

Tatum made a pair of free throws, a driving layup and sank a 3-pointer to make it 125-120 with 51 seconds to play. His two free throws with 13 seconds remaining capped the scoring.

Wembanyama has triple-double in Spurs’ win

Victor Wembanyama notched his first NBA triple-double with 16 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a 130-108 win over the Detroit Pistons in a matchup of two of the league’s worst teams.

Wembanyama achieved the milestone in just 21 minutes, going 6 of 16 from the field while missing all four of his 3-point attempts.

In NBA history, only Russell Westbrook had a triple-double in fewer minutes (20) for Oklahoma City in 2014.

San Antonio had eight players score in double figures, including Keldon Johnson (17) and Devin Vassell (16), to snap a five-game slide.

Jalen Duren had 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Pistons, who dropped their sixth in a row since breaking their NBA record-tying 28-game losing streak.

Pelicans start fast in win over Warriors

Jonas Valanciunas had 21 points and nine rebounds and Zion Williamson added 19 points, seven assists and five rebounds to lead the New Orleans Pelicans to a 141-105 win over the Golden State Warriors.

The Pelicans had eight players score in double digits in their sixth win in seven games. They scored 46 points in the first quarter and led by 25 midway through the second.

Moses Moody scored 21 points off the bench for the Warriors, who have lost six of eight.

Golden State's 36-point loss was its largest at home since a 37-point defeat to San Antonio on March 26, 2007. 

The Los Angeles Clippers signed star forward Kawhi Leonard to a contract extension on Wednesday, with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reporting the deal is worth $153million for three years.

Without announcing terms of the contract, Clippers president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank issued a statement saying "we're thrilled to continue our relationship with Kawhi.

"He is an elite player, a terrific partner and a relentless worker who knows how to win and makes it his first priority.

“He elevated our franchise from the moment he arrived. We feel fortunate that Kawhi chose to join the Clippers five years ago, and excited to keep building with him."

The 32-year-old Leonard declined his $48.8million player option for 2024-25 as part of the extension and is slated to earn $52million next season and roughly $50million in both 2025-26 and 2026-27.

Leonard signed with Los Angeles in July 2019 after leading the Toronto Raptors to their first NBA title.

He was named MVP of the 2019 NBA Finals, the second such honour of his career after guiding the San Antonio Spurs to the championship in 2013-14.

A five-time All-Star and two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, Leonard leads the Clippers (23-13) this season with 23.8 points and 1.75 steals per game.

He is also tied for second on the team in rebounding (6.1) and ranks fourth with 3.4 assists per game.

Anthony Davis and LeBron James felt the Los Angeles Lakers had impressively executed their gameplan to beat the Toronto Raptors, whose coach Darko Rajakovic hit out at the officials.

The Lakers have won back-to-back games for the first time in a month after edging to a 132-131 home win on Tuesday.

Davis scored 20 of his season-high 41 points in the fourth quarter and was was 13 of 17 from the field and 13 of 14 from the free throw line while adding 11 rebounds and six assists.

He made all eight free throw attempts in the final minute as the Lakers held on despite late 3-pointers by Toronto's Dennis Schroder and Gary Trent Jr.

LeBron James had 22 points and 12 assists to help the Lakers win their second straight after a four-game skid.

Scottie Barnes scored 26 points and RJ Barrett added 23 with 10 rebounds for the Raptors, who had won three of four.

The 14 free throw attempts for Davis were a season high and ultimately proved decisive.

"He was able to get a lot of touches and guys were finding him," Lakers coach Darvin Ham said about Davis.

"And it was his ability to get to the free throw line and knock down free throws. It is just a matter of reading the game and seeing how it's going."

Davis added: "It was all of us, it was not just me.

"We had big-time stops. We got rebounds, and they wanted me to get the ball as far as free throws, but the team was just making the right reads and trying to finish."

It was a welcome win for the Lakers after they had also narrowly defeated cross-town rival the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday.

They are now back to .500 at 19-19 for the season and 13-6 at home, as they look to put their miserable 3-10 run after winning the NBA Cup behind them.

"We knew we had an advantage on the interior and we just tried to get it to [Davis] early and often and late," said James.

Los Angeles hosts the Phoenix Suns on Thursday, while the Raptors are on the road against the Clippers a day earlier.

The Lakers shot 23 free throws in the fourth quarter and 36 overall, while Toronto shot only 13 in total, with Davis going 11-for-11 at the line in the final period.

"It's outrageous. What happened tonight, this is completely B.S.," Rajakovic said, per ESPN. 

"This is shame. Shame for the referees. Shame for the league to allow this. Twenty-three free throws for them, and we get two free throws in the fourth quarter? 

"Like, how to play the game? I understand respect for All-Stars and all that, but we have star players on our team as well.

"How [is it] possible that Scottie Barnes, who is All-Star-caliber player in this league, he goes every single time to the rim with force and trying to get to the rim without flopping and not trying to get foul calls, he gets two free throws for a whole game?

"They had to win tonight? If that's the case, just let us know, so we don't show up for the game. Just give them a win. But that was not fair and this is not happening first time for us."

LeBron was asked about the Raptors complaints and simply replied: "I feel like they fouled and we didn't."

Domantas Sabonis notched his ninth triple-double of the season with 37 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds to lead the Sacramento Kings to a 131-110 win over the lowly Detroit Pistons.

Sabonis shot 16 of 21 from the field, made his only 3-point attempt and was 4 of 4 from the free throw line. He moves within two triple-doubles of Denver’s Nikola Jokic for the league lead.

Keegan Murray scored 32 points on 13-of-17 shooting and De’Aaron Fox added 26 for the Kings, winners of five of seven.

Bojan Bogdanovic led Detroit with 26 points as the Pistons dropped their fifth in a row since ending their NBA-record 28-game losing streak.

Sacramento trailed by 20 points in the first quarter, led by 15 in the third, were tied in the fourth and then pulled away with a 9-0 run in the fourth.

Anunoby helps Knicks stay hot

OG Anunoby scored 23 points and Julius Randle added 20 with eight assists and seven rebounds as the New York Knicks won their fifth in a row, 112-84 over the Portland Trail Blazers.

Anunoby scored 16 points in the first quarter to help the Knicks open a 19-point lead. He shot 6 of 7 from the floor – 4 of 5 from 3-point range – and might have approached his season high of 29 points but the starters played sparingly in the second half.

New York is unbeaten since acquiring Anunoby from Toronto on Dec. 30.

Quentin Grimes had 17 points and Miles McBride had 16 as the Knicks moved a half-game ahead of Miami, Orlando, Indiana and Cleveland for fourth place in the Eastern Conference.

Davis shines in Lakers’ win

Anthony Davis scored 20 of his season-high 41 points in the fourth quarter and the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Toronto Raptors, 132-131.

Davis was 13 of 17 from the field and 13 of 14 from the free throw line while adding 11 rebounds and six assists. He made all eight free throw attempts in the final minute as the Lakers held on despite late 3-pointers by Toronto’s Dennis Schröder and Gary Trent Jr.

LeBron James had 22 points and 12 assists to help the Lakers win their second straight after a four-game skid.

Scottie Barnes scored 26 points and RJ Barrett added 23 with 10 rebounds for the Raptors, who had won three of four.

  

Giannis Antetokounmpo insisted the Milwaukee Bucks must take criticism from fans on the chin after they lost for a fourth time in the space of five games.

The Bucks went down 132-116 to the Utah Jazz on Monday, as their January slump continued.

Milwaukee fans were far from happy with their team's display, as boos and jeers rang out following the defeat.

Despite finishing with a triple-double of 25 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists, Antetokounmpo was unimpressed with his performance.

"I think we have great fans, but around the league, if you don't play hard and don't give everything for the team, there are times where you might get booed," he said.

"S***, I'd boo myself tonight too."

The only way forward for the Bucks now is to be unified, Antetokounmpo added.

He said: "You've got to stay together, that's it.

"If you try to go your way or do it yourself, it's not going to work.

"We've been in this position before. It's OK to be in this position, but then again, at the end of the day, we have to get better.

"We have to realise that we have to keep on doing the little things."

The Jazz ran away at the start of the fourth quarter, opening up a 15-point lead that the Bucks were unable to overturn despite a late rally.

"We flipped it a little bit as far as our energy and effort, and we made it a ballgame, but in the NBA you just can't dig yourself in a hole like that," Bucks coach Adrian Griffin said.

"And then you've got to play extremely hard and exert a lot of energy just to try to get back into the game."

Adam Silver's intervention prevented Draymond Green stepping away from basketball for good, the Golden State Warriors star has revealed.

Green is about to return from a suspension that has been in place since December 12, after he hit the Phoenix Suns' Jusuf Nurkic in the face.

That was the second suspension Green has had this season, following an altercation with Rudy Gobert in November.

And on an episode of The Draymond Green Show, the 33-year-old revealed that only a conversation with NBA commissioner Silver stopped him from retiring following his latest ban.

"I told him, 'Adam this is too much for me. This is too much. It's all becoming too much for me, and I'm going to retire'," Green said.

"And Adam said, 'You're making a very rash decision and I won't let you do that.'

"We had a long, great conversation; very helpful to me. Very thankful to play in a league with a commissioner like Adam who's more about helping you than hurting you; helping you than punishing you. He's more about the players."

Suns star Kevin Durant said at the time Green was handed the ban that the power forward needed to "get the help he needs".

On Monday, Durant explained he meant no ill will with his comments.

"You got to look at it from my perspective like before I had made those comments, [people were] saying Draymond's going to therapy and s***," Durant said.

"Like what am I supposed to think? They say somebody going to therapy, I'm hoping he gets better from that, and hope he learned from whatever he feels like he needs to learn from going to therapy.

"I'm glad he's back. I'm glad he can move past that. Draymond is an incredible teammate. He's got his times where he loses his temper, but everybody has those times and I'm sure they all [are] happy to have him back.

"But I didn't mean no ill will by what I said. I know some people look at me as this malicious snake. I know how people feel about me sometimes, so when I say s***, I don't mean no harm by nobody. I don't mean to disrespect him or his family if he felt that way. I'm just glad he's back on the court."

The Indiana Pacers overcame a double-digit deficit and an injury to star point guard Tyrese Haliburton to rally for a thrilling 133-131 win over the Eastern Conference-leading Boston Celtics on Monday.

Indiana earned its seventh win in eight games despite trailing by 11 points in the third quarter and playing the entire second half without Haliburton, the team's top scorer who had to be carried off the court after slipping and straining his left hamstring late in the second quarter.

Bennedict Mathurin helped offset Haliburton's absence with 26 points off the bench, while Buddy Hield scored 10 of his 15 points in the fourth quarter to help the Pacers also withstand a season-high 40 points from Boston's Jaylen Brown.

Brown finished 17 of 26 from the field on a night the Celtics played without leading scorer Jayson Tatum due to a sore left ankle. Boston lost for only the second time in its last 10 games and was coming off a 118-101 home win over the Pacers on Saturday. 

The Celtics did hold a 74-63 lead early in the third quarter before Indiana put forth a 17-6 run to tie the game and later take a slim 103-101 edge into the fourth.

The game remained tight up until the very end, when Mathurin was fouled by Kristaps Porzingis on a 3-point try with 0.6 seconds on the clock. He made the first two free throws before deliberately missing the third and leaving the Celtics with not enough time to get a good shot off.

Fast start helps Jazz extend Bucks' slump

The Pacers closed the gap on first-place Milwaukee in the Central Division after the struggling Bucks were handed a 132-116 defeat by the visiting Utah Jazz.

Five Jazz players had at least 19 points and Utah led from nearly start-to-finish to deal Milwaukee a fourth loss in five games. The Bucks' lead over Indiana and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Central is now down to 3 1/2 games.

Utah hit 11 3-pointers in the first quarter to take a 41-23 lead after 12 minutes, then shot 54.2 per cent in the second to build a commanding 77-46 half-time advantage. John Collins and Jordan Clarkson led the Jazz with 12 first-half points.

Clarkson and Lauri Markkanen each finished with 21 points for Utah, which had its lead reduced to seven points midway through the fourth quarter before pulling away again late.

Collins, Collin Sexton and Keyonte George all had 19 points in the Jazz's eighth win in 10 games, while Kris Dunn dished out 13 assists.

Milwaukee did get a 25-point, 10-rebound, 11-assist triple-double from Giannis Antetokounmpo on a night in which it played without fellow star Damian Lillard, who was away from the team due to a personal matter. 

Ja Morant’s season is over after just nine games.

The Memphis Grizzlies announced Monday that their star point guard will require surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder.

Morant injured his shoulder during a training session on Saturday, and an MRI was ordered Monday due to “ongoing soreness and instability,” the team said in a statement.

Morant was suspended for the first 25 games of this season after flashing a gun in an online video. After serving his suspension, Morant averaged 25.1 points and 8.1 assists.

The Grizzlies were 6-3 this season with Morant in the lineup and are 7-20 without him.

Morant was ruled out for Sunday’s win over the Phoenix Suns, but he sat on the bench with his right arm in a sling. After the game, Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said Morant was a game-time decision before that game.

A former second overall draft pick, Morant was the 2020 Rookie of the Year and has been selected as an All-Star in each of the last two seasons.

LeBron James urged the Los Angeles Lakers to use their victory over the Los Angeles Clippers as a "catapult" towards an upturn in underwhelming NBA form.

The Lakers snapped a four-game losing streak with a 106-103 triumph over their Los Angeles neighbours on Sunday.

LeBron's Los Angeles were just 3-10 since winning the in-season tournament, with Sunday's win a much-needed victory to somewhat ease a 13-game struggle.

"Try to use this to try to catapult a little bit better play from us," LeBron said after leading the game with 25 points against the Clippers.

"But it still doesn't take away from the fact of how we've been playing like the last 11, 12 games.

"Tonight was a good start. Hopefully we can start from here and continue to build."

Lakers coach Darvin Ham benefitted from having an increasing number of rotation options, with the fit-again D'Angelo Russell managing 13 points and six assists, while Jarred Vanderbilt impressed in defense.

Christian Wood also added nine points, 10 rebounds and two blocks, along with Max Christie's seven points, three rebounds and two blocks, as the Lakers' bench outshone the Clippers.

"All those guys helped us win, made some big shots, timely plays, and that's what we need," said Anthony Davis, who had 22 points and 10 rebounds.

"It takes 'the others' to win championships and win basketball games. And these guys played phenomenal tonight. When these guys are playing well, it just makes me and Bron's job a lot easier."

Ham labelled the performance as a benchmark for the remainder of the season.

"Everybody contributed, competed at a very high level," Ham added. "And I'm proud of them.

"Now the cat's out the bag for this one, in terms of how we need to approach each and every game and everybody do it as a committee."

Kyrie Irving hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 2:05 remaining and finished with 35 points to lead the Dallas Mavericks to a hard-fought 115-108 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday.

The Mavericks trailed 106-100 with under four minutes left before moving ahead to stay with a late 13-0 run highlighted by two Irving 3-pointers, the first of which tied the game with 2:59 left before he connected again less than a minute later.

Luka Dončić added 34 points and eight assists to help Dallas to a third straight win. The Mavericks also stayed in a first-place tie with New Orleans in the Southwest Division after the Pelicans rolled to a 133-100 victory over the Sacramento Kings on Sunday.

Anthony Edwards had 36 points and 10 rebounds for the suddenly scuffling Timberwolves, while Karl-Anthony Towns scored 24 points in the loss.

Minnesota remains atop the Western Conference but has now lost three of its last four games.

The Timberwolves did rally in the fourth quarter, though, as they trailed 96-87 with nine minutes left before shifting momentum with a 19-4 run sparked by its two stars. Edwards had 10 points during the spurt and Towns contributed nine.

 

Grizzlies stun Suns with big fourth-quarter rally

Jaren Jackson Jr. scored 28 points and led a fourth-quarter rally that propelled the Memphis Grizzlies to a stunning 121-115 road victory over the Phoenix Suns. 

The Grizzlies trailed by 11 points after three quarters before outscoring the Suns by a 35-18 margin in the fourth to spoil the return of Phoenix star Kevin Durant, who was back in the lineup after missing three games with a sore hamstring.

Memphis' comeback also came without the services of its top player, as point guard Ja Morant sat out the contest with a right shoulder injury.

Jackson had 10 points in the fourth quarter and Desmond Bane nine as the Grizzlies took control late. The Grizzlies opened the period on a 14-1 run to take a 100-98 lead, though the Suns regrouped to go back ahead when Durant's jumper with 2:49 left broke a 112-112 tie.

Bane countered with a 3-pointer with 1:47 remaining, though, as Memphis closed the game on a 9-1 spurt to prevail.

Bane finished with 23 points and Marcus Smart had 25 along with eight assists in the Grizzlies' third win in four games.

Durant had 23 points and 10 rebounds in his return, while Devin Booker recorded 24 points and eight assists for Phoenix, which had won five of six coming in.

 

Lakers hold off rival Clippers to end four-game skid

Taurean Prince hit a tie-breaking 3-pointer with 1:17 left as the Los Angeles Lakers got back on track with a 106-103 win over the cross-town rival Los Angeles Clippers.

The Lakers also got 25 points, eight rebounds and seven assists from LeBron James as they snapped a four-game skid and ended the Clippers' five-game winning streak. James finished 11 of 19 from the field, while Anthony Davis went 10 of 15 while contributing 22 points and 10 rebounds.

The Clippers got 22 points each from Paul George and Ivica Zubac and fought back from a 10-point deficit with eight minutes to go to tie the game at 98-98 entering the final two minutes.

George missed a would-be go-ahead 3-pointer, though, and Prince buried a 26-footer before James scored on the Lakers' next possession to put his team up 103-98 inside the final minute. 

The Clippers had a chance to force overtime after the Lakers' Austin Reaves made just one of two free throws to make the score 106-103 with 4.2 seconds left. However, Norman Powell's 3-point try just before the buzzer landed off the mark.

Zubac added 19 rebounds for the Clippers, who also got 15 points each from Kawhi Leonard and James Harden despite the star duo going a combined 10 of 30 from the field.

 

Golden State Warriors point guard Chris Paul is expected to be sidelined for four-to-six weeks after fracturing his left hand in Friday’s 113-109 victory over the Detroit Pistons.

Paul sustained the injury when he tried to grab a long rebound and collided with Detroit’s Jaden Ivey. He could be out through the NBA All-Star break.

“That’s tough, I feel so bad for Chris, I know he’s had a couple of hand surgeries before I believe, maybe on the other hand,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Friday.

”I saw him holding it and instantly was worried. Just got the word after walking off the floor. So I feel terrible for Chris and obviously guys will step up and be ready to play.

“We've got to hold down the fort without him."

Golden State acquired the 38-year-old Paul in the deal that sent Jordan Poole to the Washington Wizards last July.

The 12-time All-Star and former NBA Rookie of the Year is averaging 8.9 points, 7.2 assists and 3.8 rebounds in 32 games (11 starts) this season.

Julius Randle says the New York Knicks won't get carried away after extending their winning streak to four games on Saturday, when his 39-point haul helped them past the Washington Wizards.

Randle finished two points shy of his best return of the season as the Knicks improved to 21-15 for the campaign with a dominant performance at Capital One Arena, earning a 121-105 win.

The Knicks never looked back after bringing up a 26-point lead in the first half, building on their impressive 128-92 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers one day earlier.

They are now up to fourth in the Eastern Conference standings, but Randle says they are not looking too far ahead and will continue to take things game by game. 

"Don't play with your food," Randle said after Saturday's win. "Take care of what you're supposed to take care of and just keep improving. 

"The basketball gods have got a funny way of rewarding you or humbling you. We just try to approach every game the right way."

Jalen Brunson supported Randle with 33 points and eight assists, and the 27-year-old is enjoying playing with the two-time All-Star.

"Collectively, we both have the same mindset," Brunson said of his team-mate. "As long as we're winning, we can get better the next day and keep going from there.

"It was important to come out with energy, especially on a back-to-back. It's fun whenever you're winning."

Giannis Antetokounmpo believes the Milwaukee Bucks must do "every little thing" better after slipping to a third defeat in four games.

The Bucks were defeated 112-108 by the Houston Rockets on Saturday, dropping Milwaukee to 25-11 on the season and leaving them three-and-a-half games behind the conference-leading Boston Celtics in the East.

The Bucks' defeat to the Rockets came in spite of a brilliant display from Antetokounmpo, who finished with 48 points and 17 rebounds in a seventh-straight double-double.

Antetokounmpo says the Bucks must improve every facet of their game if they are to repeat their run to the 2021 title, telling reporters: "We have to be better.

"We have to play better, we have to defend better, we have to trust one another better, we have to be coached better.

"Every single thing, everybody has to be better. It starts from the equipment manager – he has to wash our clothes better. The bench has to be better, the leaders of the team have to be more vocal, we have to make more shots, we have to defend better, we have to have a better strategy, we have to be better.

"We have four months to get better, so we'll see."

The Rockets held a 16-point lead heading into the fourth quarter, and though the Bucks could not quite get the comeback completed, Milwaukee head coach Adrian Griffin is confident his team will get over their struggles soon.

"It'll come," Griffin stated. "It's a team sport, it's five guys out there.

"I thought we dug ourselves in a hole as a unit and did a good job of getting out of it but just ran out of time."

Nick Nurse had no excuses after his injury-hit Philadelphia 76ers team fell to a second straight defeat against the Utah Jazz on Saturday.

The 76ers were without reigning MVP Joel Embiid because of swelling in his knee, while Tobias Harris, De-Anthony Melton, Robert Covington and Furkan Korkmaz were also out injured.

Philadelphia could not overcome those absences, going down 120-109 against the Jazz after suffering a heavy 128-92 defeat to the New York Knicks in their previous game.

Despite his team's injury troubles, Nurse insists the 76ers must perform better, telling reporters: "I believe even though you're missing five guys, that those guys can collectively play together better than that,"

"They can execute better. They can defend better than that. They can make those open shots. There were plenty of shots to step into and make in that game.

"When you’re short-handed, you got to play better than that. You've got to shoot the ball better and you've got to finish better than that."

Tyrese Maxey, who finished with 25 points but made just one of his eight three-pointers against the Jazz, acknowledged the team must play better going forward.

"Coach [Nurse] said we just didn't play hard enough," Maxey said. "He felt like the guys who came in, we could've played a lot harder and with a lot more force so he said we'll work on that.

"We'll get back to doing that and playing that way."

Chris Paul will undergo surgery after fracturing his left hand in the Golden State Warriors' win over the Detroit Pistons.

During the third quarter of the Warriors' 113-109 victory on Friday, Paul injured his hand while attempting to grab a rebound, making contact with the Pistons' Jaden Ivey.

Paul went back to the locker room following the incident, and the Warriors have since announced the 38-year-old will have surgery next week.

Paul has averaged 8.9 points, 7.2 assists and 3.8 rebounds per game this season, and Golden State head coach Steve Kerr is disappointed for the 12-time All-Star.

"I feel so bad for Chris," Kerr told reporters. "I know he's had a couple of hand surgeries before, I believe, maybe on the other hand. I saw him holding it and instantly was worried.

"[I] just got the word after walking off the floor. I feel terrible for Chris, and obviously, guys will step up and be ready to play. We've got to hold down the fort without him."

Stephen Curry acknowledged he and his team-mates will have to step up in Paul's absence, saying: "Especially over the last two years or so, I'm able to adjust to whatever is out there. I know that's another challenge now going back to another different lineup with CP out.

"He's such a cerebral player. He knows how to manage the game, getting us organised. CP is a great addition to that flow.

"I've got to be able to make the adjustments, Klay's [Thompson] got to do the same, for us to continue to be aggressive [without Paul]."

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