The Toronto Raptors, 6.5-point underdogs, won at Houston on Tuesday night to snap the Rockets’ six-game winning streak. With the loss, Houston (11-4) drops a half-game behind Golden State (11-3) for first place in the Western Conference.

The Houston Rockets looked well on its way to erasing a 20-point deficit and preserving its streak, closing Toronto’s lead to 108-103 with about seven minutes left in the fourth quarter. But the Raptors outscored Houston 21-10 the rest of the way en route to a 129-113 victory.

Toronto overcame a 38-point effort from James Harden, who made just 8 of 25 field goal attempts but was a perfect 19 for 19 from the free throw line.

DeMar DeRozan, who credited the Raptors’ defence for fueling the win despite the team’s gaudy point total, led a balanced Toronto offense with 27 points. DeRozan was one of six Raptors in double figures, a group that also included Kyle Lowry and C.J. Miles with 19 points apiece and rookie OG Anunoby with a career high 16.

Stud of the Night

A masked Kyrie Irving returned from a one-game absence with a facial fracture to lead the Celtics to a 109-102 win at Brooklyn, but it’s not just his 25 points and five assists that tip the Stud of the Night scale in his direction. What sealed the honor for Irving on Tuesday was his post-game gesture of giving his jersey and shoes to two servicewomen sitting courtside at Barclays Center.

Dud of the Night

Dallas guard Yogi Ferrell missed all five of his shot attempts, was held scoreless and turned the ball over three times in the Mavericks’ 97-91 loss at home to the Spurs.


In a play that took another piece of Nets fans’ souls, the Celtics’ Jaylen Brown connected with Jayson Tatum for a slam dunk on a fast break started by Irving. Why must it have stung so badly in Brooklyn? Boston selected Brown and Tatum in the two most recent NBA drafts with picks acquired from the Nets in the 2013 trade that sent Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Jason Terry to the Nets.