The Milwaukee Bucks are waiting for an update on Giannis Antetokounmpo after their two-time MVP was forced to leave Friday's game early after a clash of knees.

Antetokounmpo played just six minutes before he signalled to the bench to take him out, but the Bucks did not miss a beat as they blew out the Miami Heat 128-99.

All-Star Jrue Holiday picked up the slack with a team-high 24 points on nine-of-14 shooting, adding seven assists and five rebounds, while Bobby Portis chipped in 18 points (seven-of-11 shooting) and 11 rebounds off the bench.

For the Heat, Kevin Love was given a spot in the starting line-up after being bought out by the Cleveland Cavaliers, and he finished with eight rebounds, four assists and zero points, missing all four of his three-point attempts.

Touching on the status of his star player after the win, Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer said he is still not sure of the severity.

"I haven’t gotten the full breakdown, but I’m pretty sure either on a drive or on a screen or something like that, he knocked knees with somebody and just wasn’t able to return," he said.

Antetokounmpo was only able to make a ceremonial start in the All-Star Game as he used the break to recover from a wrist injury, and Holiday said he would like to see the franchise exercise some caution with him, given their strong position.

"Sometimes you have to stop him from himself," he said. "Being able to calm down and maybe even not play a couple of games, knowing that we're the number two [seed], knowing that we're all right.

"I know he doesn't like it. He tries to play every single game, which I completely understand. I feel like I'm the same way."

Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra agreed that the Bucks can survive without Antetokounmpo if necessary.

"It didn't slow them down one bit when Giannis went out," he said. "They just put it in overdrive."

The win improves the Bucks' record to 42-17, just one game behind the league-leading Boston Celtics (43-17), while the Heat sit seventh in the East at 32-28.

Bam Adebayo is thrilled about the Miami Heat securing Kevin Love following his buyout with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Love fills an urgent need for a shooter in the frontcourt, as he will slot in as the only player on the Heat roster taller than six-foot-five while averaging at least one made three-pointer per game.

The five-time All-Star is also leading the league this season in defensive rebounding percentage, but had found himself out of the Cavaliers' rotation leading into the All-Star break as they prioritised their youth.

Love, a champion in 2016 when his Cavs came back from a 3-1 deficit in the NBA Finals, is averaging career-lows in both points (8.5) and rebounds (6.8), but Adebayo believes he will bring value that extends beyond just his minutes on the floor.

"It's exciting. We've got fresh legs on the team," he said. "We've got a guy like Kevin Love, who has been through those wars, came back from 3-1.

"You've got a battle-tested guy like that who has won – it's big for us. He's really underrated as a team player.

"He's underrated for what he does. I know what he'll bring to our team will make us more successful."

Adebayo has spent time with Love previously as they trained together with Team USA in the lead-up to the 2020 Olympic Games.

He went on to compare Love to Heat stalwart Udonis Haslem, with the 42-year-old now in his 20th season in Miami, providing leadership from the bench despite only actually playing in 17 combined games since the end of the 2018-19 season.

"[Love is] smart, he stretches the floor, and you can learn from a guy like that, having a guy like that in your corner," Adebayo said. "Him and 'UD', two different walks of life, but now they're kind of going down the same road. 

"Having guys like that, it'll help me tremendously. He's an all-around great person."

Miami will come out of the All-Star break sitting seventh in the Eastern Conference with a record of 32-27.

Kevin Love will sign with the Miami Heat after negotiating a buyout with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday.

Love confirmed in a Twitter post that his plan is to sign with the Heat after clearing waivers, with the hope of earning minutes with another Eastern Conference contender.

The 34-year-old was in the midst of his ninth season as a member of the Cavaliers, and was the last remaining link to their one and only championship win in 2016.

After playing exclusively as a starter since the 2010-11 season, Love was moved into a reserve role this past campaign, making only seven starts from his past 115 regular season games.

He is averaging a career-low 8.5 points and 6.8 rebounds this season while shooting 38.9 per cent from the field, but remains a respectable three-point shooter at 35.4 per cent from deep.

Love's dip in form saw him removed from the Cavaliers' rotation altogether in the lead-up to All-Star weekend, ultimately signalling the end of his time in Cleveland.

Miami currently have eight players this season averaging at least 25 minutes per game – Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro, Kyle Lowry, Caleb Martin, Max Strus, Victor Oladipo and Gabe Vincent.

Of that group, Adebayo is the only true big-man, and while Butler plays above his size, Love provides a skill-set the Heat roster is lacking.

Always desperate to have at least three shooters on the floor at any time – which star duo Adebayo and Butler are not – Miami have been playing small lineups as they do not have a single player taller than six-foot-five who is also averaging at least one made three per game.

The six-foot-eight Love averages 1.7 made threes per game over the course of his whole career, and when extrapolated to starter's minutes this season, Love is averaging 3.0 makes on 8.6 attempts while grabbing 12.3 rebounds per 36 minutes.

He is also the NBA leader in defensive rebounding percentage among players averaging at least 20 minutes per game, snatching down 29.8 per cent of all opponent misses while he is on the floor.

Currently sitting seventh in the East with a record of 32-27, Miami will hope Love provides a spark down the stretch to keep their streak of three straight playoff appearances alive.

Mikal Bridges scored a career-high 45 points in his third game for the Brooklyn Nets since his trade for Kevin Durant as they won 116-105 over the Miami Heat on Wednesday.

The Nets had dropped four of their past five games since trading Kyrie Irving to the Dallas Mavericks, with the injured Durant following him out the exit door last week.

Bridges shot 17-of-24 from the field, making four-of-six from beyond the arc with eight rebounds and five assists.

The Nets became the first team in NBA history to have four players score 45 points or more in a single game in one season.

Cameron Johnson, who also joined the Nets from the Phoenix Suns alongside Bridges, added 18 points with three assists.

The Nets had trailed 56-52 at the main break, but Bridges broke the game open with 15 straight points.

Bridges finished the game with 17 points in the fourth quarter, comfortably eclipsing his previous career-best return of 34 points.

Bam Adebayo had 24 points with 13 rebounds and six assists for the Heat, while Max Strus scored 18 points as the Heat fell to 32-27.

The win lifted the Nets to 34-24, although Ben Simmons' woes continued with only two points, four rebounds and assists in 20 minutes.

Embiid brings up milestone amid double-double

Joel Embiid brought up his 10,000th career as he recorded a double-double as the Philadelphia 76ers won their fourth straight in a 118-112 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Embiid finished with 29 points with 14 rebounds and five assists, while James Harden also managed a double-double with 19 points and 12 assists. Harden assisted and scored in 27 of 38 first-quarter points.

The 76ers led 63-38 at half-time, although Donovan Mitchell fought hard for the Cavaliers, scoring 25 second-half points, before finishing with 33.

LeBron returns as Lakers win

LeBron James scored 21 points on his return after three games out with a foot injury as the Los Angeles Lakers won 120-102 over the New Orleans Pelicans.

Anthony Davis scored a game-high 28 points with 10 rebounds and five assists as the Lakers improved to 27-32 to boost their playoff hopes, while D'Angelo Russell added 21 points. The Lakers never trailed after a 38-point opening quarter.

Brandon Ingram top scored for the Pelicans, still missing Zion Williamson, with 25 points, while Jonas Valanciunas had 12 points with 11 rebounds.

LeBron James said it felt "surreal" to see his name up in lights as the NBA all-time record points scorer, revealing the heroes who inspired his journey to the top of basketball.

The 38-year-old addressed the crowd at Crypto.com Arena on Thursday night, telling them how Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant had been long-time inspirations, while hailing his mother Gloria and wife Savannah.

With 38 points against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday, James moved to 38,390 in his regular season career, surpassing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's long-standing record of 38,387.

Coming up for 20 years as an NBA player, the former Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat star is in the fifth year of his Lakers stint.

He told of how his journey to the summit of professional sports came against all odds, being founded on his admiration for great men of basketball and the powerful women in his life.

"Growing up in a small town of Akron, Ohio, in an underprivileged single-parent household, only child, you feel like you're never going to make it out," James said.

"You feel like the statistics are built up against you, you feel like the system is built against you to not succeed, you feel like there's no way you're going to have an opportunity for your dreams to become a reality, and I didn't allow those moments to deter me from my dreams.

"I had dreams every day of playing in the NBA, I had dreams every day of being an inspiration to so many people.

"I had dreams of one day being able to throw no-look passes like Magic Johnson, to be able to shoot fadeaways like Michael Jordan, to be able to have a cross-over like Allen Iverson, to be able to have an afro and jump in a dunk contest like Kobe Bryant.

"I looked up to so many athletes and so many people along my journey, and they gave me the inspiration and allowed my dream to not die.

"I always felt it was my job and my responsibility to come out and play the game at a high level and be as great as I can be, because there is a kid in the inner city somewhere that's looking for inspiration and is going to need it and maybe get it from me."

James sat out the Lakers' 115-106 home loss to the high-flying Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday night, making his speech before the game.

With his mother and wife with him on the court floor, James said: "As I look up at this jumbotron and seeing the 'NBA all-time leading scorer', it's so surreal to me. But the one thing I know for sure is I never cheated a game of basketball and I would never cheat in a game of basketball because it's given so much to myself, given so much to my family.

"My beautiful wife is the real MVP if you want to be completely honest, she's the all-time leading scorer. My family is everything to me, and you guys [in the Lakers crowd] over the last five years have become family to me as well.

"Every night I step on the floor, I understand I truly have a huge responsibility and understand what it means to represent the Los Angeles Lakers when I step on this floor, so thank you so much."

LeBron James brought the NBA to a standstill on Tuesday. Even the Los Angeles Lakers' game against the Oklahoma City Thunder was paused.

With 38 points at Crypto.com Arena, James moved to 38,390 in his regular season career, surpassing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's long-standing record of 38,387.

The four-time champion has been the league's pre-eminent star across stints with the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Miami Heat and the Lakers.

Now, across basketball history, he stands alone.

It is a remarkable achievement and only becomes more impressive when delving into the numbers behind James' new record.

Beating the Thunder

The Thunder may have put a slight dampener on James' big night by winning Tuesday's game, but the 38-year-old actually has more career points than Oklahoma City's entire active roster combined (21,900).

Indeed, the Thunder are merely one of five rosters James can better, along with the Indiana Pacers (36,515), the Orlando Magic (33,164), the San Antonio Spurs (32,364) and the Houston Rockets (28,642).

Had James not got over the line on Tuesday, he would have done instead against the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday – and that would have been fitting, too.

James has scored more points against the Bucks (1,751) than against any other team. In fact, the Thunder (994) are the team he has scored the third-fewest against – more only than against the Lakers (829) and the Cavaliers (580), two teams he represented.

The Lakers forward scored at least 1,000 points against each of the other 27 teams, while he has scored 1,000 in each of his 20 NBA seasons. That is another record he has taken from Abdul-Jabbar (19).

James would have no doubt enjoyed being able to achieve this legendary feat in front of a home crowd, but he has actually scored more points on the road (19,251 in 694 games) than at home (19,139 in 716).

Unsurprisingly, however, Cleveland's Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse is the arena to have seen the most James points (11,670). The Lakers' Crypto.com Arena (4,649) nudged ahead of the Heat's Miami-Dade Arena (4,613) into second place on Tuesday.

Wade's helping hand

In that home crowd in LA, sitting in front of Lakers owner Jeanie Buss, was Dwyane Wade, a two-time title-winning team-mate of James' on the Heat.

Wade also joined James on the Cavaliers for a season and, although now retired, has assisted more points for the new all-time scoring leader than any other player (776).

Eric Snow (630) is second on that list, with Mario Chalmers (591) third and Mo Williams (501) fourth, followed by Kevin Love (486) and Kyrie Irving (469).

Russell Westbrook has only been playing with James in LA since 2021, but he is ninth on 375. Anthony Davis (269) is 11th and Chris Bosh (267) 12th.

Ricky Davis assisted James' first NBA points and 42 altogether. Davis, who retired in 2010, was the first of 148 different players to assist James.

But the bulk of James' points have been unassisted, of course. His 26,855 unassisted points alone would rank him 13th in the all-time list, ahead of Kevin Durant (26,684), who is second to the Lakers man among active players.

James has scored 10,882 points from layups, 8,074 from two-point jump shots and 8,047 from free throws. Of the rest, 6,711 have come from three-pointers, 4,190 from dunks, 310 from hook shots and 176 from tip-ins.

Another Lakers record

The record was reached with a fadeaway jumper, and several members of Lakers royalty were in the house to see it – including Abdul-Jabbar.

James followed Abdul-Jabbar as the seventh different player to lead the NBA in all-time scoring since the end of the league's first season in 1946-47.

Four of those seven have now represented the Lakers, with James and Abdul-Jabbar joined by George Mikan (1952-53 to 1957-58) and Wilt Chamberlain (1965-66 to 1983-84). Chamberlain took ownership of the record while a Philadelphia 76er, before playing for the Lakers.

Chamberlain succeeded Bob Pettit, one of the remaining three who did not turn out for the Lakers. Joe Fulks, the leading scorer in the NBA's first season, and Dolph Schayes are the others.

Luka Doncic, just 23 and with 8,531 points through 311 career games, is perhaps the most credible challenger to James' crown. James had 8,319 points through 311 games, albeit he was only 22.

Matching James' longevity is a huge ask; either way, he will be number one for a long, long time.

Time spent at the top is a record Abdul-Jabbar can at least retain for now, having ranked first in scoring for a mammoth 14,187 days. The NBA was only 13,671 days old when he took the record, meaning he led the league for more than half of its existence.

Still more to achieve

That is not the only Abdul-Jabbar mark that remains, with the 75-year-old out in front on 57,446 minutes played. James (53,743) is third, while he is tied for ninth in games played (1,410) – a statistic led by Robert Parish (1,611).

Abdul-Jabbar is the man to beat for MVP awards, too, with six, and James' four appear unlikely to be added to now, given his age and the Lakers' woes.

James should pass Abdul-Jabbar for All-Star selections, though, as the pair are tied on 19, while the modern great already has a leading 13 All-NBA First Team selections.

In the playoffs, James already topped the charts for points (7,631) and games played (266), although the 'GOAT' debate will rage on as Michael Jordan has the edge in Finals MVPs (six to James' four).

Among players with 500 or more games, Jordan (30.1) is also the leading man for points per game in the regular season, even if James (27.2 in fifth) is averaging 30.2 this year, the third-highest mark of his career.

At that rate, even if James cannot reel in Jordan, he should be able to establish a considerable buffer to any and all pretenders to his new crown.

United States president Joe Biden has praised LeBron James for "inspiring the nation" after surpassing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's all-time regular season NBA scoring record.

Los Angeles Lakers forward James entered Tuesday's game with the Oklahoma City Thunder needing 36 points to break Abdul-Jabbar's record, which had stood for 39 years.

The four-time MVP moved past Abdul-Jabbar's 38,387 career points to go outright number one with a 14-foot fadeaway jumper late in the third quarter at Crypto.com Arena.

James' game-high 38 points on 13-of-20 shooting with three steals were not enough to prevent the Lakers from losing 133-130 to the visiting Thunder.

But it was job done on an individual level as he strengthened his case as being the greatest basketball player of all time – a debate that will rumble on for some time.

A number of sports stars and wider global figures have paid tribute to James, who now has 38,390 career points to go with the four NBA titles won with three different teams.

"LeBron, congratulations. With your whole heart and soul you broke a hell of a record. You elevated the game," US president Biden said in a video message. 

"More than that, like Kareem, Bill Russell and others who came before you, you challenged and inspired the nation to be better, do better and live up to our full promise."

James rose with both arms in celebration after making history and posed for photos with 75-year-old Abdul-Jabbar, who was in attendance in Los Angeles.

Fellow Lakers great Magic Johnson said: "I never thought that Kareem's scoring record would be broken by anybody. 

"It means more to myself and to our fans because you're wearing that purple and gold and broke it as a Laker. 

"This historic moment is so special because we will never see another LeBron James."

James has 7,314 points across five seasons with the Lakers, having previously scored 23,119 in 859 games for the Cleveland Cavaliers and 7,919 in 294 for the Miami Heat.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver added: "It's a towering achievement that speaks to his sustained excellence over 20 seasons in the league. 

"And quite amazingly, LeBron continues to play at an elite level and his basketball history is still being written."

James is averaging 30.2 points per game this season, which is the seventh-best record in the division, narrowly ahead of Kevin Durant (29.7) and Stephen Curry (29.4).

Golden State Warriors guard Curry and Brooklyn Nets forward Durant also congratulated James on his remarkable achievement.

"Your sustained level of play for 20 years, reaching this pinnacle of scoring in basketball, it is unbelievable," Curry said. 

"Way down the road, when we're reflecting back on our careers, we'll be able to be at that level knowing what it was like to battle at the highest level."

Durant added: "It's even funny to just even say that, coming from where you have come from, how hard you grinded for this long. 

"It's been an inspiration since day one. Much love and keep setting the bar high."

They say styles make fights, and it will be a true styles clash when the run-and-gun Indiana Pacers travel to take on the grinding Miami Heat on Wednesday.

Coming into the contest, the Heat sit sixth in the Eastern Conference with a record of 29-25, 4.5 games ahead of the 10th-placed Pacers (25-30). Miami have been treading water recently with a 5-5 record from their past 10, while Indiana have struggled to a 2-8 run.

While there are many complex layers to this contest, a lot of it boils down to one simple point: the Pacers want to play fast, and the Heat want to play slow.

The young Pacers, led by the current official league-leader in assists Tyrese Haliburton (10.3 per game), play at the fourth-highest pace in the league (101.9 possessions per game). Meanwhile, the veteran Heat outfit, led by the current league-leader in steals Jimmy Butler (2.1 per game), play at the third-slowest pace (97.1 possessions).

That mindset dictates many key indicators for each team, starting with the disparity in fast-break offense.

The Pacers lead the league with 19 fast-break points per game, while the Heat are 27th at 11.3 – so Indiana will run all over Miami, right?

Well, not necessarily. The hectic pace the Pacers play at is conducive to high-scoring offense from both teams – allowing the sixth-most fast-break points per game (15.0) – while the Heat often control the tempo and limit fast-breaks all together, allowing the fourth-fewest points per game in that category (12.1).

Another symptom of playing fast at all costs is turnovers, and that is an area the Heat will look to exploit.

Miami forces a turnover on 16.8 per cent of opponent possessions – the best rate in the league – and 17.4 per cent of their total points come directly from these turnovers, which is the second-highest percentage.

Meanwhile, the Pacers' commit turnovers on 15.0 per cent of their possessions, making them the eighth-most turnover prone side in the NBA.

Another key difference between the two franchises is their discipline defensively, which primarily presents itself in two areas – fouling and boxing out.

Miami allows an offensive rebound on just 8.6 per cent of opponent misses – the best rate in the league – while Indiana allow the second-most (12.1 per cent).

The Heat also limit their opponents to the second-fewest made free throws per game (16.2), while the Pacers give up the most (20.3).

While this game is essentially about a fast team and a slow team, it is also about a good defense and a bad defense.

For the season, the Heat boast the fifth-best defensive efficiency in the league, allowing 111.0 points per 100 possessions, and they have been even better than that recently, with their mark of 109.8 across their past 15 games the third-best figure during that period.

Unfortunately for the Pacers, who started the season so far above expectations, their offense has cratered over that same 15-game span as Tyrese Haliburton's injury triggered a dismal run that resulted in the league's worst offense (109.3 points per 100 possessions). Haliburton has returned for their past three games, but there has been no improvement, with their 104.2 offensive rating in those three games also the worst figure in the league.

Indiana also rank 22nd in defense for both the full season and across the past 15 games, and their one strength on that end – Myles Turner, who is top-five in blocks per game (2.4) for the seventh consecutive season – is partially negated by the fact that Miami's offense only absorbs 3.8 blocks per game, tied for the league's fewest.

However, the silver lining for the Pacers is that they can bomb away from long range – averaging the sixth-most made three-pointers per game (13.8) – while the Heat are not equipped to stop them, allowing the second-most made threes per game (13.2).

PIVOTAL PERFORMERS

Indiana Pacers – Buddy Hield

While Haliburton and Turner are the Pacers' two best players at both ends of the court, Hield is the X-factor thanks to his marksmanship and the Heat's tendency to get beat from long range.

Averaging 3.8 made three-pointers per game, he trails only Golden State Warriors duo Stephen Curry (4.9) and Klay Thompson (4.2), Portland Trail Blazers superstar Damian Lillard (4.1) and Charlotte Hornets point guard LaMelo Ball (3.9) – and Hield's three-point percentage of 42.8 is better than all of them.

Miami Heat – Jimmy Butler

Adebayo is the only All-Star selection this season for the Heat, but Butler is the straw that stirs the drink, and the key to their efficient half-court offense.

He is metronomically consistent – averaging exactly 14.1 field goal attempts per game in both wins and losses this season. Butler's ability to control the pace and not allow his opposition to dictate play will be crucial against a team with such a different style, as will his distribution skills, with a 20 per cent assist increase (4.4 up to 5.3) in wins.

KEY BATTLE – Who will control the pace?

It goes without saying that whichever team forces the game to be played at their pace should have the advantage, and unfortunately for the Pacers, it is far easier to slow the game down than speed it up.

By controlling the rebounds, limiting their own turnovers and staying switched on defensively, Miami can turn this into a halfcourt grind and take the sting out of Indiana's speed in transition, so it will be imperative that the visitors shoot well from deep.

If the Pacers can hit some early threes and build a lead, it will create a sense of urgency in the trailing side that inevitably leads to quicker shots, more possessions and a style that suits the away team.

HEAD-TO-HEAD

Since the beginning of the 2021-22 season, these two sides have met on six occasions. Despite the fact that Miami have been a staple in the playoffs and the Pacers are on track to miss out for the third season in a row, they have split those six meetings 3-3.

Illustrating how evenly matched the teams have been, they are 2-2 in their past four, and 1-1 in their past two, while the three most recent contests have been decided by a combined margin of 10 points.

Dewayne Dedmon's time with the Heat is over after Miami traded the back-up centre to the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday.

The Spurs also receive a second-round pick in the 2028 draft, while the Heat got cash considerations, which gives the franchise financial flexibility.

Dedmon is averaging 5.7 points and 3.6 rebounds in 30 games this season, but has only appeared in one contest since being ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct in a win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on January 10.

In that game, the 33-year-old argued with Heat coaches about playing time, feuded with team-mates and knocked a massage gun onto the court during play. He was suspended for one game by the Heat for his actions.

He joins a San Antonio team that has the second-worst record in the Western Conference at 14-40, and this will be his second stint with the franchise after playing there in 2016-17.

The 10-year veteran with career averages of 6.4 points and 5.8 rebounds has also played for the Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, Orlando Magic, Atlanta Hawks and Sacramento Kings.

The Heat, who are atop the Southeast Division with a 29-25 record, move on without Dedmon, as well as Kyle Lowry for the foreseeable future.

Lowry sat out Saturday's loss to the Milwaukee Bucks due to left knee soreness, and the Heat announced he will miss at least three more games.

He will be re-evaluated next week, with Miami having just two more games before the All-Star break.

The 17-year veteran missed three games in January due to left knee discomfort and he has struggled to find his shot since returning, averaging 5.6 points on 25 per cent shooting in his last five games.

On the season, the 36-year-old is averaging 12 points – his lowest scoring average since averaging 11.6 points in 2012-13 for the Toronto Raptors.

Former MVP James Harden and Atlanta Hawks franchise player Trae Young were among those to miss out on All-Star selection after the Eastern Conference reserves were announced on Thursday.

The starters had already been named a week ago, with Brooklyn Nets tandem Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant being joined by Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell and Boston Celtics MVP candidate Jayson Tatum on the East team, captained by Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo.

After being a surprise omission from the starters, Philadelphia 76ers back-to-back MVP runner-up Joel Embiid headlined the reserves, where he will be joined by Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo, Celtics wing Jaylen Brown, New York Knicks big-man Julius Randle, Chicago Bulls wing DeMar DeRozan, Bucks point guard Jrue Holiday and Indiana Pacers rising star Tyrese Haliburton.

It is the sixth consecutive All-Star selection for Embiid, the sixth overall for DeRozan, while it will be the second time for Adebayo, Brown, Randle and Holiday – with Holiday having to wait 10 years between drinks after his first selection in 2013.

Haliburton was the only first-time All-Star in the East, and he had to beat out some serious names to earn the honour.

The Pacers point guard is averaging career-highs in points (20.2) and assists (10.2) after being traded from the Sacramento Kings at last season's trade deadline, while his 1.8 steals per game has him sitting fourth in the league.

His 10.2 assists per game trails only Harden (11.0), while Harden is also averaging more points (21.4), rebounds (6.4 to 4.0) and owns a superior record. Harden – who had made 10 consecutive All-Star Games prior to this season – is 23-11 in his 34 contests entering Thursday, while Haliburton's Pacers are 22-18 in his 40 appearances.

The 76ers are the only of the East's top-four teams to not send two players to All-Star Weekend.

Meanwhile, Young's Hawks also sit two places above the Pacers in the standings with a 26-26 record. With 27.0 points and 9.9 assists per game, Young joins Harden and back-to-back MVP Nikola Jokic as the only players in the league averaging at least 21 points and nine assists.

Two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo was an unstoppable force on the offensive end as his Milwaukee Bucks collected a 135-110 home victory against the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday.

Antetokounmpo scored a game-high 50 points on 20-of-26 shooting, hitting three of his four attempts from downtown while adding 13 rebounds and four assists.

It was the sixth time in the Greek superstar's career that he had reached 50 points, and the second time this month after setting a new career-high with 55 points against the Washington Wizards on January 3. Antetokoumpo is averaging a career-high 31.7 points per game, placing him third in the league.

The contest got out of hand early as the Bucks jumped out to a 37-19 lead at the end of the first quarter, with Antetokounmpo scoring 16 of his side's first 21 points.

Fans were treated to a shootout in the third period as the two teams scored 44 points each, but the undermanned Pelicans did not have the firepower to keep up, with not a single player from the away team reaching 20 points.

With the victory, the Bucks improved their record to 33-17 – the fourth-best in the league – while the Pelicans dropped their eighth in a row to slip to 26-25, occupying the eighth seed in the West.

Grizzlies storm home in comeback win

Ja Morant posted his second consecutive triple-double to lift his Memphis Grizzlies to a stirring 112-100 comeback win at home against the Indiana Pacers.

Morant dished 15 assists in his second-highest tally of the season to go along with 27 points (nine-of-21 shooting), 10 rebounds and two steals.

The Grizzlies needed every bit of his heroics as they found themselves trailing by 16 early in the third quarter, before finishing the game on a 60-32 run as they won the third period 30-17 and the last 32-21.

Memphis are now 32-18, and the only Western Conference side within six games of the top-seeded Denver Nuggets (34-16).

Rozier ignites Hornets upset

The Charlotte Hornets have now won four of their past six after an upset 122-117 triumph against the visiting Miami Heat.

Terry Rozier was the star of the show, scoring a game-high 31 points on 11-of-19 shooting with seven assists and six rebounds, while 24-year-old former lottery pick P.J. Washington showed promising signs on his way to 27 points (11-of-19), six rebounds and five assists.

Jimmy Butler was terrific for the Heat, shooting 11-of-14 from the field for his 28 points, seven rebounds and three steals, but it was Miami's defense that was the issue, allowing Charlotte to shoot 54 per cent overall.

LeBron James' jersey from Game 7 of the Miami Heat's triumphant 2013 NBA Finals has been bought in New York for $3.68million, making it the third most expensive game-worn jersey ever sold by Sotheby's.

The figure comes in behind Michael Jordan's 1998 NBA Finals Chicago Bulls jersey at $10.91m and Diego Maradona's Argentina jersey from the 1986 World Cup game where he scored the 'Hand of God' goal against England, at $9.28m.

The highest previous figure for a game-worn James jersey was $630,000 from the 2020 All-Star Game.

The Heat clinched the 2013 NBA Finals against the San Antonio Spurs 95-88 with James scoring 37 points with 12 rebounds and four assists.

James won his fourth NBA MVP crown during the 2012-13 season along with the 2013 NBA Finals MVP, the second of four in his career.

"Today's tremendous result comes at a pivotal time in LeBron James' career, where he is in arm's reach of clinching the all-time points record," Sotheby's expert Brahm Wachter said.

James (38,210) is on track to pass Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's NBA all-time points scoring record (38,387) in the next fortnight.

LeBron James scored 46 points but the Los Angeles Clippers continued their recent dominance over the Los Angeles Lakers with a 133-115 victory on Tuesday.

The Clippers have now won 10 straight against the Lakers and are 36-9 in recent seasons. The win moves the Clippers up to fifth spot in the west with a 26-24 record, while the Lakers are 22-26 and 13th in the west.

Paul George top scored for the Clippers, who made 19 three-pointers at 50 per cent as a team, leading the way with 27 points on 11-of-20 shooting while adding nine rebounds and four assists.

Kawhi Leonard chipped in 25 points with nine rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks as the Clippers found form with a third straight win, and they could receive further reinforcements soon as Luke Kennard (calf) and John Wall (abdominal strain) close in on returns.

James was exceptional for the Lakers, shooting 16-of-29 from the field with nine-of-14 triples, along with eight rebounds, seven assists, two steals and one block.

The four-time NBA MVP's 46-point haul moves him to within 177 of tying Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's all-time scoring record at 38,387.

James appeared set for a 50-point game, scoring 15 points in the fourth quarter, before the Clippers put the game to bed on an 8-0 run and send James to the bench for good with five minutes remaining.

Another triple-double as Jokic calls game

Nikola Jokic scored the game-winner with 16.2 seconds left as he recorded his 15th triple-double of the season in the Denver Nuggets' 99-98 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans.

Jokic and Jamal Murray were disconnected down the stretch before linking up for the crucial two-pointer, capping the Serbian's game with 25 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, adding further weight to his claims for a third straight MVP, which would be the first occurrence since Larry Bird from 1984-86.

Murray added 25 points on 11-of-21 shooting with seven assists for Denver, while C.J. McCollum top scored for the Pels with 20 points, but he went zero-of-eight from three-point range.

Celtics suffer back-to-back defeats

The short-handed Miami Heat fought back from 14 points down to inflict back-to-back defeats on the Boston Celtics with a 98-95 victory.

Bam Adebayo top scored with 30 points and 15 rebounds for Miami, who were without Jimmy Butler due to a back injury. The Heat squared the game up at 87-87 in the fourth quarter on a 10-0 run, before going on to win their sixth straight game at home.

Jayson Tatum, who scored 31 points with 14 rebounds, threw a pass that was intercepted by Tyler Herro in the final minute, before Payton Pritchard missed a desperation three-point attempt on the buzzer.

The Miami Heat suspended Dewayne Dedmon for one game without pay after the outburst where he swatted a massage gun on to the court in Tuesday's 112-111 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Dedmon reacted angrily after being subbed out of the game, exchanging words with coaches, before storming off and flinging a massage gun back on to the court during play. The reserve center was ejected by officials for that act.

The Heat announced on Wednesday that in consultation with the NBA they had decided Dedmon would be banned for one game for "conduct detrimental to the team".

Miami head coach Erik Spoelstra had labelled the outburst as "unacceptable" after Tuesday's game.

"It's the Miami Heat. We're all a bunch of gnarly personalities," Spoelstra said.

"That part was unfortunate. Everything before that, that's the Miami Heat. That part was unacceptable."

Jimmy Butler had "no idea" the Miami Heat had broken the NBA record for the most free throws in a game without a miss.

The Heat edged out the Oklahoma City Thunder 112-111 on Tuesday, with Butler scoring a game-leading 35 points and going 23-of-23 from the free-throw line.

That means Butler was just one short of James Harden's league record of 24-of-24 free throws, set in December 2019, for the most in one game without a miss.

Butler was not the only Heat player on top form from the line, with the rest of the team shooting 17-of-17, breaking the team record of 39-for-39 made by the Utah Jazz against the Portland Trail Blazers in 1982.

Yet Butler had no clue the Heat were setting a record, with his sole focus on Miami's fightback - they trailed 111-106 heading into the final minute but came out on top in the closing seconds.

"I had no idea," Butler told reporters about the 40 free-throw feat. "I'm more excited that we won this game by one point."

"We won. A complete team effort. I'm proud of my guys. We always talk about finding a way to win. This is a good start to that. Whatever it takes to win."

It was a similar story for Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra, who said: "We've been a very good free-throw shooting team all year, but that's crazy.

"I didn't realise we hadn't missed a free throw.

"It's just a normal Tuesday night for the Miami Heat. I think this is when we feel most alive, when everything just happens and when all of our competitive juices get out there.

"That's the team we all can relate to. That's the team I like."

Miami are now 22-20 for the season and sit eighth in the Eastern Conference.

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