Phoenix Suns star Kevin Durant played his 12th consecutive game with 25 or more points, the longest such streak in Arizona franchise history. He scored 39 points Sunday in Phoenix's 140-137 victory against the Utah Jazz after double overtime. “I just try to stay prepared on off days and before matches, follow the game plan as best as possible, and play with a calm and free mind,” said the 35-year-old All-Star winger. .
The Boston Celtics, first in the Eastern Conference, narrowly escaped against the Memphis Grizzlies, winning their sixth consecutive game 102-100. After 18 changes of advantage on the scoreboard, Kristaps Porzingis (26 pts) planted the winning dunk one minute from the end, before blocking Ziaire Williams' last shot at the buzzer.
LeBron James became the fourth player with more than 10,500 assists in NBA history on Sunday, during the Los Angeles Lakers' one-point victory against the Houston Rockets 105-104. The score was 104-104 four seconds from the buzzer but James (37 pts, his season record) scored the winning free throw.
In Brooklyn, the Philadelphia Sixers, second in the Eastern Conference, devoured the Nets 121-99. Joel Embiid, last season's MVP, only needed three quarters to score 32 points (12 rebounds, 9 assists). The match almost folded (61-49 at halftime), Embiid watched the last quarter from the bench but did not worry about missing a potential triple-double: “I was told that he I was only missing three passes, but I didn't have that in mind. We just try to play well,” he explained.
The Denver Nuggets, defending champions, fell in Cleveland against the Cavaliers (121-109). Nikola Jokic, the Nuggets star and two-time NBA MVP, quickly got into trouble by accumulating fouls, and even watched the end of the match from the bench. He still finished with 18 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists. In Toronto, the Raptors led by more than 40 points against the Detroit Pistons, ultimately beaten 142-113. The Pistons record their 11th consecutive defeat.