Durant goes for 44 as Thunder trips Knicks
NEW YORK – Kevin Durant scored a season-high 44 points and grabbed 14 rebounds as the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the New York Knicks 128-122 in overtime Tuesday night.
Durant hit the tying jumper with 16.2 seconds left in regulation, then scored seven points in overtime to surpass the 43 points he had against Orlando on Oct. 30, a game that went to two overtimes.
One was all the Thunder needed this time, as Durant hit four consecutive free throws in the final half-minute to finish 16-for-18 from the line.
Russell Westbrook finished with 30 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds for the Thunder, which bounced back from a loss to Brooklyn to win for the eighth time in nine games.
Langston Galloway scored 21 points for the Knicks, who played without injured leading scorer Carmelo Anthony. Derrick Williams added 19 points and 10 rebounds, but the Knicks couldn't hold on after leading by 11 in the fourth quarter.
Durant helped wipe that lead away, then did it again when the Knicks recovered to go back ahead by four in the final minute of regulation.
•ARISING FROM PHOENIX'S ASHES: Ish Smith had 20 points and nine assists and Robert Covington scored 19 points to lead the host 76ers to a 113-103 victory over the Suns. Once 1-30 on Dec. 23 and challenging for the worst record in NBA history, the Sixers have since gone 6-9 and might not even end up with the worst record in the league.
•THEM'S FIGHTIN' WORDS: Lakers coach Byron Scott claims he didn't post a comment on his Instagram account apparently threatening to fight a fan. When a commenter made several remarks to Scott appearing to challenge him to a fight, someone logged in as Scott told the commenter to "Bring it … and show your face, don't hide." Scott said he doesn't know who wrote the comment on the since-deleted post.
•LENDING A HAND: Chris Paul scored 26 points and J.J. Redick added 19 as the Clippers held off a late Pacers comeback for a 91-89 victory in Indianapolis. The Clippers played without All-Star forward Blake Griffin, who is out four to six weeks after breaking his shooting hand in a scuffle with equipment manager Matias Testi.
•FALLING STARS: All-Star starter Kyle Lowry put up 29 points before leaving because of a hand injury in the final minutes and the host Raptors downed the Wizards 106-89 for their ninth consecutive victory, matching a franchise-best mark. The Wizards were without Bradley Beal, who sustained a broken nose and a concussion after getting hit in the face against the Celtics on Monday.
•HEY, WHO'S THAT KIDD? Giannis Antetokounmpo dunked eight times and scored 25 points as the host Bucks, with coach Jason Kidd back on the bench, beat the Magic 107-100. Kidd missed 17 games after having surgery on his right hip Dec. 21.