Jahlil Okafor produced a season-high point total for a second consecutive game while Jrue Holiday undergirded a patchwork rotation with a sensational defensive performance as the depleted New Orleans Pelicans stunned the host Houston Rockets 121-116 on Tuesday.
James Harden led the Rockets with 37 points — his 24th straight game with at least 30 — and added 11 rebounds, but he shot just 11 of 32 from the floor.
Okafor paired 27 points with 12 rebounds while Holiday posted 19 points, six rebounds, eight assists and six blocked shots for the Pelicans, who were missing five of their top six rotation players and reeling from the trade request of All-NBA center Anthony Davis (who is also sidelined with a finger injury).
Harden’s streak actually appeared to be in jeopardy, but a late spurt kept it going. He did not hit 30 points until he sank a 3-pointer with less than two minutes left, and then he scored seven more points in the final minute.
Bucks 115, Pistons 105
Giannis Antetokounmpo collected 21 points, 11 assists, eight rebounds and three steals as visiting Milwaukee completed its first four-game season series sweep of Detroit.
Eric Bledsoe had 20 points and seven assists and Pat Connaughton added 16 points off the bench for Milwaukee. Khris Middleton contributed 15 points, six rebounds and six assists, Brook Lopez tossed in 14 points and Tony Snell had 11 points in the win.
Reggie Jackson paced the Pistons with 25 points while Andre Drummond had 20 points and 13 rebounds. Blake Griffin added 18 points, nine assists and seven rebounds but also committed five turnovers.
76ers 121, Lakers 105
Visiting Philadelphia welcomed Joel Embiid, Jimmy Butler and Wilson Chandler back into their starting lineup, and the trio helped the Sixers run over short-handed Los Angeles to get back on track after a rough start to a five-game road trip.
Embiid finished with 28 points and 11 rebounds. Butler scored 20 points, and Chandler finished with nine. Ben Simmons added 19 points for Philadelphia, Mike Muscala scored 17 off the bench, and JJ Redick had 13.
Brandon Ingram scored a career-high 36 points for the Lakers. He has posted at least 20 points in three straight games for the first time in his three-year career. JaVale McGee contributed 17 points and 14 rebounds off the bench, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 12 points.
Spurs 126, Suns 124
Rudy Gay poured in a tiebreaking, 21-foot jump shot as time expired to lift San Antonio to a win over visiting Phoenix.
San Antonio led by four points after Davis Bertans barely beat the shot clock with a 27-foot 3-pointer with 33.3 seconds to play. Phoenix’s Devin Booker then cut the lead to two points with a pullup jumper with 24.9 seconds remaining, and Josh Jackson tied the score with a dunk with 19.6 seconds left after a Booker steal.
Gay then took the game in his hands, patiently working against Phoenix defender Kelly Oubre Jr. a step inside the arc before letting fly his deciding shot just before the buzzer and granting the third win in a row for the Spurs, who were led by LaMarcus Aldridge (29 points, 14 rebounds).
Thunder 126, Magic 117
Dennis Schroder’s 18 points in the fourth quarter led visiting Oklahoma City to a win over Orlando.
Schroder had 21 points in all, and Paul George scored 37 points (31 in the first half). Russell Westbrook had 23 points, 14 assists and 14 rebounds for Oklahoma City, which extended its winning streak to six games. Schroder scored 18 points during a 23-5 Thunder run midway through the fourth quarter.
Nikola Vucevic led Orlando with 27 points and 11 rebounds, and Evan Fournier added 17 points. The Magic have lost four straight and seven of their last eight games.
Cavaliers 116, Wizards 113
Jordan Clarkson scored 28 points and Cleveland squandered most of a 25-point fourth-quarter lead before holding on to defeat Washington for its second straight win.
Washington cut the deficit to three points in the final minute and had a chance to tie when it inbounded with 10.8 seconds left but Cedi Osman knocked the ball away from Troy Brown, who was attempting a 3-pointer, and the Cavs held on despite missing nine fourth-quarter free throws.
Osman had 26 points for Cleveland and Ante Zizic had 12 points and 12 rebounds.
Nets 122, Bulls 117
D’Angelo Russell scored 30 points as Brooklyn overcame some sluggish moments to extend its home winning streak to nine games with a victory over Chicago.
Russell scored at least 30 points for the eighth time this season as he hit 10 of 22 shots and added seven assists. He scored 22 of his points after halftime as the Nets rebounded from Monday’s loss to the Celtics in Boston.
Russell’s latest productive game also helped the Nets win for the 13th time in their last 14 home games since Dec. 7. The Nets (28-24) also matched their win total from last season and beat the Bulls for the sixth straight time.
—Field Level Media