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Lakers beat Suns to win 3rd in a row

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POSTED January 10, 2012 11:34 p.m.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kobe Bryant scored 48 points — his fifth straight game with 25 or more — and the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Phoenix Suns 99-83 Tuesday night to win their seventh straight at home and third in a row overall.

Bryant, the NBA’s leading scorer, topped the 40-point mark for the first time this season, the first in the league to do so. He was 18 of 31 from the floor and made 12 of 13 free throws. Pau Gasol added 16 points and 12 rebounds.

Channing Frye scored 17 points, Marcin Gortat had 16 points and 12 rebounds, and Steve Nash added 13 points and eight assists for the Suns, who had their two-game winning streak snapped.

BULLS 111, TIMBERWOLVES 100

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Derrick Rose scored a season-high 31 points and had 11 assists to outlast Ricky Rubio in a thrilling duel, leading Chicago over Minnesota.

Luol Deng had 21 points and 11 rebounds, and Kyle Korver scored 13 points off the bench for the Bulls, who appeared to be on their way to a blowout early before Rubio led the Wolves back.

Rubio had 13 points, 12 assists and four rebounds. Luke Ridnour scored 22 points for the Timberwolves, who just couldn’t find an answer for Rose down the stretch.

The reigning MVP shrugged off a mid-game shooting slump to score on an explosion to the basket and then knocked down a little one-handed jumper for an eight-point lead with 2:30 to play.

Kevin Love finished with 20 points and 13 rebounds, but his shooting woes continued as he made 5 of 18. Anthony Randolph scored 18 points.

MAVERICKS 100, PISTONS 86

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki scored 18 points, and Dallas reached the .500 mark by routing Detroit.

The defending champion Mavericks (5-5) started their NBA title defense slowly, losing four of their first five games, but they’ve bounced back. Tuesday’s win was their first on the road. Shawn Marion scored 14 points and Vince Carter added 11 for Dallas, which led by as many as 28 in the second half.

Will Bynum scored 20 points for Detroit. The Pistons (2-8) have lost five straight games, and this was actually the least lopsided of the bunch thanks to a late run.

THUNDER 100, GRIZZLIES 95

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Russell Westbrook scored 30 points, Kevin Durant added 22 points and 11 rebounds, and Oklahoma City won its fourth straight.

Thabo Sefolosha added 12 for Oklahoma City, hitting all four of his shots, including three outside the arc. James Harden finished with 10 points.

Marc Gasol led Memphis with 20 points and 14 rebounds, while Rudy Gay contributed 16 points, but was 7 of 21 from the field. Mike Conley had 15 points and 10 assists for the Grizzlies, who lost their third straight.

BUCKS 106, SPURS 103

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Stephen Jackson had 34 points and eight assists in his best game since joining Milwaukee in an offseason trade, leading the Bucks over San Antonio.

Milwaukee also got a big lift from the return of center Andrew Bogut, who had 14 points and 11 rebounds after missing four games to return home to Australia for an undisclosed personal issue.

The Bucks had lost five consecutive games.

Tony Parker scored 22 points for San Antonio, which has lost all four of its road games while winning all six of its home games.

Richard Jefferson’s tying 3-point attempt hit the back of the rim at the buzzer.

TRAIL BLAZERS 105, CLIPPERS 97

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Gerald Wallace scored 20 points, making a key 3-pointer with two minutes left, and Portland avenged a loss to the Clippers on New Year’s Day with a victory.

LaMarcus Aldridge added 18 points and seven rebounds for the Blazers, who have not lost in six games at home this season.

Wallace’s 3-pointer put the Blazers ahead 99-90, but the Clippers narrowed it to 100-97 after Chris Paul made a layup and Chauncey Billups hit a jumper and a free throw with 25 seconds left. Portland made free throws the rest of the way to preserve the win.

JAZZ 113, CAVS 105

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Al Jefferson scored a season-high 30 points and Paul Millsap added 19 and Utah defeated Cleveland.

It was Utah’s fifth straight win as the Jazz (6-3) improved to 5-0 at home.

The Jazz are off to their best start at home since beginning the 2008-09 season at 6-0.

The Cavs (4-5) fell to 1-3 on a seven-game road trip, and visit Phoenix, the L.A. Lakers and Charlotte next.

Antawn Jamison led Cleveland with 22 points, including 13 in the third quarter, as he tried to rally the Cavs.

WIZARDS 93, RAPTORS 78

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rashard Lewis and Nick Young each had 15 points to lead Washington to its first win after eight straight losses.

Andray Blatche had nine points and eight rebounds in 25 minutes. John Wall tied his season high with nine assists, but missed nine of 12 shots. In his past two games, Wall is 6 for 21 from the field.

Toronto, which was playing its second of three games in three nights, was led by Andrea Bargnani with 22 points.

ROCKETS 82, BOBCATS 70

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Rookie Chandler Parsons scored 20 points and Kevin Martin added 17 points and Houston defeated Charlotte to snap a four-game losing streak.

Jordan Hill had a double-double for the Rockets off the bench with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

The Rockets (3-6) broke open a tight game in the third quarter and the poor-shooting Bobcats could never put together a big run.

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