NBA: Thunder beat Raptors to reclaim NBA lead


Tue, Jan 08, 2013 - Page 20

Oklahoma City Thunder reclaimed the overall NBA lead with a 104-92 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Sunday, starting a challenging run of road games in winning style.

Elsewhere, high-flying Miami and Memphis posted wins while the Los Angeles Lakers’ woes deepened with another home defeat.

Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook scored 23 points, while Kevin Durant had 22 as the Thunder enjoyed a winning start to a stretch that sees them play 11 of 13 on the road. Oklahoma City came in having played an NBA-low 12 road games this season and improved to 9-4 as visitors.

Alan Anderson scored 17 of his career-high 27 points in the second quarter for the Raptors.

Los Angeles dropped their third straight — and the Lakers are already 11 games off the lead — with a 112-105 loss to the Denver Nuggets.

Ty Lawson had 21 points and 10 assists while Danilo Gallinari scored 20 points and hit a big three-pointer with 13.8 seconds left for Denver.

Kobe Bryant scored 29 points for the Lakers.

The Memphis Grizzlies became the latest team to beat the struggling Phoenix Suns, winning 92-81.

Zach Randolph scored 21 points and Rudy Gay added 20 for Memphis.

P.J. Tucker scored a career-high 17 points for the Suns.

The Miami Heat scored the final 21 points of the game to pad the margin in a 99-71 win over the Washington Wizards.

LeBron James scored 24 points for Miami, extending his streak of 20-plus games to 53.

The Heat, beaten on the boards by a total of 38 rebounds over the previous three games, this time enjoyed a 50-39 advantage, led by Udonis Haslem with 12.

The Wizards, last in the NBA in points and shooting, lost their fifth game in a row and fell to 0-13 on the road against Eastern Conference teams.

In Sunday’s other game, the Charlotte Bobcats won 108-101 after overtime at the Detroit Pistons, posting just their second win in 21 games.