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Harden's Rockets down Thunder in NBA

AAP logoAAP 6/01/2017

James Harden had the last laugh against fellow NBA MVP contender Russell Westbrook as his Houston Rockets pipped the Oklahoma Thunder 118-116.

Both superstar guards have been prolific this season, punching out triple-doubles with Westbrook boasting a league-leading 16 and Harden second with nine.

Westbrook again led the scoring with 49 points, two shy of his season high, in Thursday night's clash in Houston, while adding eight rebounds and five assists.

In New Orleans, Dennis Schroder scored 23 points and the Atlanta Hawks beat the New Orleans Pelicans 99-94 to win their fifth straight, even as shooting guard Kyle Korver spent the entire game on the bench amid reports he could be traded.

In New York, Jeff Teague had 21 points, 15 assists and seven rebounds, and Myles Turner finished with 25 points and 15 boards as the Indiana Pacers beat the Brooklyn Nets 121-109 for their fourth consecutive victory.

Kyle Lowry scored 16 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Toronto Raptors to a come-from-behind 101-93 away victory over the Utah Jazz.

Lowry, who had 19 points in the final quarter of a comeback win at Utah two weeks ago, added six rebounds and five assists for the Raptors.

DeMar DeRozan had 23 points and seven rebounds, while Jonas Valanciunas added 18 points and 13 rebounds as Toronto rallied from a deficit of 11 points in the second period.

In Dallas, Eric Bledsoe scored 26 points, including five straight to break a tie in the final two minutes, and the Phoenix Suns beat the Dallas Mavericks 102-95.

Devin Booker added 22 points as the Suns won consecutive games for just the second time this season.

In Auburn, Michigan, Marco Belinelli nearly pulled off one of the craftiest buzzer beaters in memory, but his bank shot was disallowed because it came too late, and the Detroit Pistons held on for a 115-114 victory over the Charlotte Hornets.

LaMarcus Aldridge scored 28 points, including 11 while sparking a third-quarter spurt, to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a 127-99 win over the Denver Nuggets.

In the final game, CJ McCollum had 27 points and Damian Lillard returned from a sprained ankle with 21 points and 10 assists to lead the Portland Trail Blazers to a 118-109 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

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