DENVER (AP) — Shai Gilgeous-Alexander banked in a decisive 8-foot jumper with 9.2 seconds remaining and finished with 34 points as the Oklahoma City Thunder snapped Denver’s league-leading nine-game win streak and beat the Nuggets 101-99 Sunday night.
After Denver’s Zeke Nnaji hit two free throws to tie the game at 99 with 30 seconds left, Gilgeous-Alexander got the ball out of a timeout and hit the mid-range jumper to give the Thunder the lead. The Nuggets’ Jamal Murray missed a 14-foot shot in the final seconds.
Oklahoma City’s victory ended the Nuggets’ 16-game home win streak — the franchise’s longest run in 10 years.
Josh Giddey had 18 points and a team-high nine rebounds for the Thunder, who earned their seventh win in nine games.
Denver was without center Nikola Jokic, who missed his second straight game while dealing with tightness in his left hamstring, and forward Michael Porter Jr., out due to personal reasons. Jamal Murray shouldered much of the offensive load, finishing with a team-high 26 points and nine assists.
SUNS 112, GRIZZLIES 110
PHOENIX (AP) — Chris Paul had 22 points and 11 assists in his return after missing seven games with a hip injury, leading Phoenix over Memphis.
The Suns had to hold on in the final minutes after dominating most of the night.
Desmond Bane’s free throws cut the margin to 110-106 with 58.8 seconds left. After a Phoenix turnover, Ja Morant was fouled and made two more free throws to cut it to 110-108 with 28.6 seconds remaining. Phoenix forward Dario Saric hit two free throws after being fouled on the ensuing possession and the Grizzlies finally ran out of time.
The Suns have won three straight, pushing back to .500 for the season. The Grizzlies have dropped two in a row after their 11-game winning streak was snapped by the Lakers on Friday.
HEAT 100, PELICANS 96
Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler each scored 18 for Miami, which trailed by 16 in the first half. Lowry scored 17 for the Heat, the last nine of those coming in a span of 1:42 down the stretch.
New Orleans’ 25th turnover came on a five-second violation with 15.1 seconds left, with the Heat up by two. The Heat needed two time-outs before they could get the ball inbounds, and wound up losing a jump ball anyway with 12.2 seconds remaining.
McCollum got a good look at a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession, but it rimmed out and Miami's Victor Oladipo put the game away with two free throws.
The Clippers won consecutive games for the first time since Dec. 26-27, while the Mavericks have lost four of their last five games and seven of 10.
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The Associated Press