NBA roundup: Wins for New York Nicks, Houston Rockets

Austin Rivers scores 15 points off the bench as the Knicks beat Indiana Pacers 106-102.

Indiana Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis (11) and New York Knicks center Nerlens Noel (3) battle for a rebound during the second half of the NBA contest in Indianapolis on Saturday, January 2. - AP

Austin Rivers hit a 3-pointer that gave the New York Knicks the lead for good late in the fourth quarter on Saturday night and added the clinching layup with 35.3 seconds remaining as the Knicks surprised the host Indiana Pacers, 106-102.

Rivers, who played his second game for the Knicks after missing the first four games due to a groin injury, scored 15 points off the bench for New York, which has won three of four.

R. J. Barrett scored a team-high 25 points and was 4 of 5 on 3-point attempts. The Knicks hit 44.4 percent (12 of 27) of their 3-pointers on Saturday, two nights after shooting a franchise record-low 8.3 percent (3 of 36) from the 3-point line. Julius Randle finished with 12 points and 11 rebounds, Elfrid Payton had 19 points and eight rebounds, and Mitchell Robinson went of 8 of 10 shooting and netted 16 points.

Malcolm Brogdon scored 33 points for the Pacers, who have lost two of three. Domantas Sabonis (13 points, 13 rebounds) had his sixth double-double in as many games to start the season, while Myles Turner scored 17 points. Victor Oladipo finished with 16 points, and Justin Holiday added 12 points off the bench.

Houston Rockets 102 - Sacramento Kings 94

John Wall had game highs of 28 points, six assists and three steals as host Houston capped a back-to-back sweep of Sacramento.

Rockets guard James Harden, who poured in 33 points with eight assists in a 122-119 victory over the Kings on New Year’s Eve, was a late scratch with a right ankle sprain. Houston found sufficient scoring elsewhere, with Eric Gordon replacing Harden and recording 21 points. Christian Wood notched his third double-double for the Rockets with 20 points and 15 rebounds.

De’Aaron Fox led the Kings with 23 points, while Buddy Hield chipped in 17 points and five 3-pointers. All five Kings starters scored in double figures, but after a scorching start, Sacramento finished just 35 of 90 (38.9 percent) from the floor.

Oklahoma City Thunder 108 - Orlando Magic 99

Darius Bazley had 19 points and 12 rebounds to lift Oklahoma City over host Orlando.

The Magic had thrived in the fourth quarter, outscoring opponents in the final quarter in each of their first four games. But the Thunder outscored the Magic 24-17 in the fourth to break a three-game losing streak. After starting the season 4-0 for the first time in franchise history, Orlando has dropped consecutive games.

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The Thunder had six players score in double figures, with George Hill adding 18 points, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander 16 and Horford, Maledon and Diallo 12 each. Nikola Vucevic led the Magic with 30 points, while Terrence Ross added 26, but the duo combined for just eight points in the fourth quarter.

Cleveland Cavaliers 96 - Atlanta Hawks 91

Collin Sexton scored 27 points and made some clutch field goals down the stretch to lead Cleveland to a victory in Atlanta.

Sexton got help from Andre Drummond, who notched a 12-point, 11-rebound double-double for the Cavaliers. JaVale McGee chipped in 14 points and nine rebounds off the bench, while Cedi Osman poured in 11 points.

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Trae Young and Clint Capela both scored 16 points for the Hawks, who blew a 12-point halftime lead. Capela also brought down 16 rebounds while Young dished out 10 assists.

Philadelphia 76ers 127 - Charlotte Hornets 112

Tobias Harris scored 24 points to lead six players in double figures as host Philadelphia defeated Charlotte.

Seth Curry added 21 points, Joel Embiid contributed 19 points and 14 rebounds, and Shake Milton had 18 points for the Sixers, who won their 18th in a row at home. Ben Simmons earned his 29th career triple-double with 15 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists, and Danny Green also scored 13 points for Philadelphia, which won its third straight and hit a season-best 16 shots from 3-point range.

Terry Rozier led the Hornets with 35 points, while Gordon Hayward added 20 and LaMelo Ball chipped in with 13.

New Orleans Pelicans 120 - Toronto Raptors 116

Brandon Ingram scored 31 points and Zion Williamson added 21 to lead host New Orleans to a season sweep of Toronto.

Eric Bledsoe (19 points, 10 assists) and Steven Adams (13 points, 10 rebounds) both added double-doubles for the Pelicans. Lonzo Ball also chipped in with 13 points in the victory.

Fred VanVleet poured in a team-high 27 points for the Raptors, while Chris Boucher scored 24. O.G. Anunoby and Kyle Lowry added 17 and 16 points, respectively, in defeat.

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