Friday, October 28, 2016

Durant helps Warriors bounce back, beat Pelicans 122-114

 Kevin Durant scored 30 points, Klay Thompson added 28 and the Golden State Warriors bounced back emphatically from a surprising season-opening loss to beat the New Orleans Pelicans 122-114 on Friday night.
After scoring only six points on five shot attempts in the first half, Stephen Curry asserted himself more with an array of inside and deep shots to finish with 23 points, including a momentum-swinging 8-0 run by himself in the third quarter. Durant also had 17 rebounds.
Anthony Davis, who scored 50 points in New Orleans' season-opening loss, finished with 45 points and 17 rebounds against Golden State, but the Pelicans struggled to trim their deficit below double digits for much of the final quarter.
Tim Frazier scored a career-high 21 points and added 10 assists for New Orleans. Lance Stephenson and Dante Cunningham each scored 15 points.
Golden State, the two-time defending Western Conference champions, dropped their season opener at home in stunning fashion, 129-100 to San Antonio. The Warriors made far easier work of the depleted Pelicans, leading by as many as 16 points and trailing for less than a minute in the second half, and by only one point in the third quarter.
The Pelicans trailed by 12 after Draymond Green's 3 early in the third quarter, but chipped away and briefly took the lead at 74-73 when Frazier his a driving layup that gave him 11 points in the period.
The Warriors seized momentum right back, however, when Curry scored the next eight points on a deep 3, a pair of free throws and a driving layup as he was fouled. Curry added another 3 from 30 feet a few possessions later, and wound up with 13 points in the third quarter, which ended with Golden State leading 92-81 after Andre Iguodala's dunk.
New Orleans got as close as 116-110 on Davis short basket with about a minute left, and had the ball with a chance to pull closer, but Durant blocked Davis' jumper and raced the other way for a break-away layup to put it away.
Warriors: Durant was called for a technical foul for shoving Stephenson to the floor after the highly animated Stephenson had fouled him. ... Durant has scored at least 20 points in 66 consecutive regular season games, the longest such streak since Michael Jordan's 69 straight in 1990-91. ... The Warriors started cold from deep, hitting only one of their first seven 3-point attempts, but still led by 11 at that point. ... Patrick McCaw, who hit his only shot from 3-point range, sprained his left ankle in the first half and did not return. ... Green and Zaza Pachulia each grabbed 11 rebounds. Pachulia scored 10 points.
Pelicans: Davis is the first Pelicans player (dating back to the NBA's return to New Orleans as the Hornets in 2002) to score 40 or more in consecutive games. ... New Orleans missed 10 of its first 12 3s and shot only 38.8 percent (19 of 49) overall in the first half, after which they trailed 59-50. ... Sixth overall draft choiceBuddy Hield played 17 minutes and once again had a quiet game offensively, hitting 1 of 6 shots for two points. He also let a pass slip through his hands and out of bounds when he was wide open under the basket.
Warriors: Visit Phoenix on Sunday afternoon.
Pelicans: Visit San Antonio on Saturday night.

Hill has 23 points, Jazz beat Lakers 96-89 in home opener

George Hill said he wanted to help Utah win more close games. In his second contest since a June trade from the Pacers, the veteran point guard helped the Jazz do just that.
Hill scored 23 points, Rudy Gobert had 13 points and 13 rebounds and the Jazz beat the Los Angeles Lakers 96-89 in Utah's home opener Friday night. Hill took over late and scored 10 points in the fourth quarter.
"A lot of guys can talk about it, I'm more big on leading by example," Hill said. "Holding guys accountable. Doing what I can do first and let guys read that.
"That's the thing, the better off we're going to be is every one of these guys being able to hold each other accountable and give each other constructive criticism and don't take it the wrong way. Just knowing that we have one common goal and we all want to win."
The Jazz used a 16-1 run spanning halftime to take an 11-point lead, but the Lakers closed the third quarter on a 22-11 run - highlighted by Tarik Black's put-backs and Lou Williams' 3 - to take a 65-64 lead.
The Jazz trailed by four midway in the fourth quarter when Hill's 3-pointer sparked an 11-0 run for an 83-76 lead. Utah led the rest of the way.
"I think he's just a good player," Jazz coach Quin Snyder said of Hill. "He takes pride, is the main thing. He's got a lot of pride in his defense. On the offensive end ... he didn't stop attacking. That's going to be huge for us, especially with Gordon (Hayward) and Alec (Burks) out. We've talked about George being aggressive offensively."
Jazz forward Derrick Favors returned from a knee injury that kept him out for most of the preseason and the season opener. He finished with 15 points, nine rebounds and two blocks. Teammate Rodney Hood added 15.
Williams led the Lakers with 17 points.
"We came out of halftime flat and that second unit came out and did a phenomenal job," Lakers coach Luke Walton said. "We had a fourth quarter lead. Utah is a tough team at home. They are well coached. We missed some good looks, they shot 40 free throws, which is a little ridiculous to me, but that is kind of what happens when you play in Utah."
Lakers: No. 2 overall pick Brandon Ingram left the game with a sore right knee in the first half and did not return. He said it got sore while running and thinks it may be tendinitis. "I think it was better to be cautious about it and just come back and try to run on it again. But it just felt like I needed to be done." ... D'Angelo Russell shot just 3 for 14 and had nine points.
Jazz: Hayward went through a workout, including shooting the ball, before the game. He is out indefinitely and missed most of the preseason with a broken finger on his non-shooting hand. ... Gobert had his second double-double in two games and also had four blocks
Snyder was an assistant with the Lakers from 2011-12 when Walton was on the roster. Snyder said he worked a lot with the second unit, which included Walton.
"His feel for the game and just the kind of quiet intelligence," Snyder said when asked what he remembered. "Sometimes you had to ask him what he thought. ... You can always learn a lot from NBA players when you're coaching if you just pay attention and keep your ears open. There's things that they acquire over a period of a career. Luke, clearly, that stuff translates to him coaching right now."
Lakers guard Nick Young has already matched his number of starts from the 2015-16 season. He's started both games season and had just two last year.
"He earned it, honestly," Walton said. "In training camp it wasn't like we had him penciled in. But he continued to work hard defensively, is what first caught our eye.
"When that first unit was struggling to kind of score in those preseason games, we were just thinking of different ways to get more firepower and kind of keep that second unit together that was playing really well. We tried Nick and he did a phenomenal job and kept working hard in practice. It felt right."
Lakers: Travel to face Oklahoma City on Sunday after Russell Westbrook scored 51 points on 44 shots Friday against the Suns.
Jazz: Travel to face the Clippers on Sunday.

Rockets top Mavs 106-98 with Nowitzki out for home opener

 James Harden walked the ball up the court in the final seconds of the third quarter, then decided he didn't want to set up the offense.
The Houston star simply pulled up and hit a long 3-pointer for the first double-digit lead during a late-quarter run that put the Rockets in control for good.
Trevor Ariza scored 27 points, Harden had 26 and Houston beat Dallas 106-98 with Dirk Nowitzki missing from the Mavericks' home opener Friday night.
Harden went scoreless while playing the entire first quarter, missing all five shots, before getting 10 points in the second and 12 in the third, including the punctuating 3 that followed two others on a 10-2 run to finish the quarter.
"I was in a groove and it was time to close out the quarter," Harden said. "Think that's one of the things that we're preaching is we got to end quarters the right way."
Harrison Barnes, playing his first home game for the Mavericks after signing a max contract in the summer, had a career-high 31 points.
Nowitzki didn't play for just the second time in 19 home openers with Dallas. The 38-year-old had a stomach ailment bad enough that coach Rick Carlisle wasn't sure he would make the trip to Houston for the Rockets' home opener Sunday.
"Dirk's not going to be around here forever. And we're going to be sitting him sometimes this year," Carlisle said. "The other guys have got to step up and step forward. And I'm one of them. We've all got to really raise the level of our game when a guy like that's not on the floor."
Two nights after recording a career-high 17 assists in an opening loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, Harden had eight assists and seven rebounds.
Ariza was 5 of 7 from 3-point range, including one early in the fourth quarter to push Houston's lead back to nine points. He was fouled on 3-pointers twice and made all six free throws.
Rockets: Harden became the second player in NBA history with at least 30 points and 15 assists in an opener when he had 34 points and 17 assists in the 120-114 loss to the Lakers. Tim Hardaway had 32 and 18 for Golden State at Denver in 1990. ... Eric Gordon was the other double-figure scorer for Houston with 18 points. ... Clint Capela had nine rebounds.
Mavericks: Dallas has the two highest totals for 3-point attempts in a game in league history after shooting 48 in the 130-121 overtime loss to Indiana in the opener. The Mavericks made 18 (38 percent). Dallas shot a record 49 on March 5, 1996, against New Jersey, also making 18 (37 percent). ... Andrew Bogut, a starter alongside Barnes at Golden State before both joined Dallas after the Warriors landed Kevin Durant in free agency, had a game-high 12 rebounds. ... Deron Williams had 14 points, but just one in the second half.
The only other home opener Nowitzki missed was in 2012 when he sat the first 27 games recovering from knee surgery. Sliding over to power forward, Barnes was strong inside and out, going 13 of 23 from the field with five rebounds. "I think he has a chance to be a very special player. I've felt that all along," Carlisle said.
After giving up 51 percent shooting in the loss to the Lakers, the Rockets allowed Dallas to shoot 52 percent in the first quarter while Barnes scored 12 points . But the Mavericks were held to 15 of 40 (38 percent) in the second and third quarters, when Houston outscored them 53-43. "We can't just rely on offense or James bailing us out like he did a lot last year," Ariza said. "We have to do it collectively on the defensive end."
Dallas' Wesley Matthews scored 13 points on a second straight bad shooting night. He's 7 of 30 from the field through two games, including 3 of 18 from 3-point range.
The Rockets were 15 of 32 from 3-point range (47 percent). Ariza, Harden (4 of 9) and Gordon (3 of 6) combined to make 12 of 20 from beyond the arc. "I think our legs were a little bit better, and we'll get more in shape as we play more games," first-year coach Mike D'Antoni said.
The Rockets' home opener Sunday against the Mavericks is their only home game in the first eight this season. One of three five-game road trips - a season high - follows.

Westbrook has 51 points, triple-double, Thunder beat Suns

Russell Westbrook had 51 points and a triple-double and scored the winning points in the Oklahoma City Thunder's 113-110 overtime victory over the Phoenix Suns on Friday night.
According to the Thunder, it was the first 50-point triple-double since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had one in 1975. Westbrook finished with 13 rebounds and 10 assists and took a career-high 44 shots.
Westbrook made a layup to put the Thunder up a point with 7.6 seconds remaining. Phoenix's Devin Booker missed a layup and Westbrook was fouled. Westbrook scored his 50th and 51st points at the free-throw line with 3.5 seconds remaining. Booker missed a 3-pointer as time expired.
Westbrook was 17 of 44 from the field, 2 of 10 from 3-point range and made 15 of 20 free throws.
Westbrook has 38 career triple-doubles. He scored 39 points in the second half and overtime.
T.J. Warren had a career-high 30 points for the Suns.
The Suns led by 18 in the first quarter, but Oklahoma City held Phoenix to 5-for-26 shooting in the second quarter to cut it to 53-49.
Westbrook tied it at 59 on a layup and free throw early in the third, but the Suns responded with a 12-0 run. Westbrook kept the Thunder in it with 23 points in the third quarter on 7-for- 12 shooting, but the Suns led 83-77 heading into the fourth.
Westbrook returned from a rest with 8:50 remaining and the Thunder trailing 89-81. Four minutes later, his driving layup gave the Oklahoma City a 97-96 lead. Westbrook then found Roberson open, and Roberson's 3-pointer pushed Oklahoma City's lead to 102-98 with 2:39 to play.
Westbrook missed several chances to put the Thunder ahead in the closing seconds of regulation, and Phoenix held on to force overtime.
Suns: Coach Earl Watson played for the Thunder during the 2008-09 season. ... The Suns led 31-13 in the first quarter and 40-25 at the end of the period. ... Phoenix shot 69.6 percent in the first quarter and 19.2 percent in the second.
Thunder: Domantas Sabonis, a rookie, started in his first-ever regular-season home game. He finished with eight points on 4 for 6 shooting. ... Backup point guard Cameron Payne sat out with a fractured right foot. ... Westbrook was issued a technical in the third quarter, but it was taken away upon review. ... Victor Oladiposcored 21 points.
Westbrook's averages through two games are 41.5 points, 12.5 rebounds and 9.5 assists.
Suns: Sunday, they travel to Golden State to face former Thunder star Kevin Durant's new team.
Thunder: Sunday, they host the Lakers and new coach Luke Walton.

Hornets rally from 19 down in second half, top Heat 97-91

 Kemba Walker already knows one thing about these Charlotte Hornets.
"We're resilient," Walker said.
That was proven in earnest Friday night.
Walker scored 24 points and the Hornets erased a 19-point deficit in the third quarter on the way to beating Miami 97-91. Charlotte won in the building where its season ended in Game 7 of a first-round matchup last spring, albeit against a very different Heat team that played a home opener without Dwyane Wade on the roster for the first time since 2002.
"We could have given up, but we didn't," Walker said. "We kept wanting it."
Hassan Whiteside led Miami with 20 points and 15 rebounds but sat a long stretch of the second half with foul trouble and needed four stitches to close a gash on his left elbow.
Down 65-46, Walker made a 3-pointer to unknowingly start what became a 29-point turnaround. The Hornets clamped down on Miami in the second half, with the Heat shooting 6 for 17 from behind the arc in the final 24 minutes - and just 6 for 26 from 2-point range in that time. Charlotte's reserves had 30 points after halftime, while the entire Miami roster combined for 34.
"One thing is we were able to stop their penetration more," Hornets coach Steve Clifford said. "Our defense more energized the offense, and we got really good bench play."
Jeremy Lamb scored 16 points for the Hornets, who had six players in double figures and turned the 65-46 hole into a 94-84 lead with 3 minutes left - a 48-19 run in about 18 minutes. Nic Batum and Marco Belinellieach scored 12 points for Charlotte.
"They're a well-coached, veteran team," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "They weren't punch-drunk or anything when we went up. ... We knew going in we would have to play a complete game against them and we weren't able to do that."
Goran Dragic scored 14 points and Dion Waiters added 13 for the Heat, who lost a home opener for the first time in nine years. Charlotte had runs of 12-0 and 9-1 in the third quarter alone.
"We just stopped getting stops," Heat forward Justise Winslow said. "That was it."
Hornets: Roy Hibbert started at center, played the first 4:29, and did not return because of right knee soreness. Cody Zeller started the second half in his place. ... Frank Kaminsky (right foot strain) went through a pregame workout but was inactive. ... Belinelli now has 11 regular season appearances in Miami with seven different teams.
Heat: Team captain Udonis Haslem grabbed a microphone and addressed the crowd before tip-off, promising them that "we will play as hard as we can for you guys every night." ... The locker Wade used for the last several years is now empty, not assigned to any current Heat player. ... Wayne Ellington (right thigh bruise) and Josh Richardson (right knee) were again sidelined.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist just recently turned 23, missed most of last season with a shoulder injury and still made the 200th start of his Charlotte career on Friday night. Miami's entire starting five - Dragic (100), Whiteside (77), Winslow (10), Luke Babbitt (2) and Waiters (2) - now have a combined 191 starts in Heat colors.
Heat President Pat Riley sat down with team broadcast outlet Fox Sports Sun before the game and raved about the job Spoelstra has done with a new group that was largely assembled after Wade left for Chicago this summer (and before Chris Bosh failed his physical in September to essentially end his time with the team).
"There's a saying that Spo uses a lot, and I like to use it myself now ... when you look at a player, the player doesn't care what you know until he knows how much you care," Riley said. "Spo and his staff cares a lot about these guys and these young players."
Hornets: Saturday, they play their home opener against Boston.
Heat: Sunday, the homestand continues when San Antonio visits.

Lin leads Nets past Pacers, 103-94 in home opener

Jeremy Lin fell just short of a triple-double, though there was a 10th assist after the buzzer.
The point guard tracked down the game ball and gave it to Kenny Atkinson, who got his first win as an NBA coach not far from where he grew up.
"Pretty special," Atkinson said, his eyes welling up a bit.
Lin had 21 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in his Nets home debut, Brook Lopez scored 25 and Brooklyn beat the Indiana Pacers 103-94 on Friday night.
Lin drew some delirious cheers the way he briefly did during his run of Linsanity last time he played in New York, with the Knicks in 2012.
Atkinson was the assistant coach who worked closely with him on that team, and Lin's first thought was of the Northport native when the buzzer sounded.
"This is his and he deserves it, and I better not see him play with that ball or whatever," Lin said. "He better get that framed and make sure he knows."
Sean Kilpatrick hit consecutive 3-pointers during the decisive fourth-quarter surge and finished with 18 points for the Nets, who lost to Boston in their opener.
Paul George had 22 points and nine rebounds for the Pacers, who were outscored 31-15 in the fourth quarter.
The Nets opened their fifth season in Brooklyn by improving to 4-1 in home openers, an immediate highlight in a rebuilding season where there aren't expected to be many of them.
"They brought the fight to us," George said. "We knew coming in that this team necessarily (did not have) have the names but they play hard and they play together."
The Pacers, who opened with a 130-121 overtime victory over Dallas, surged into the lead with a 31-point third quarter.
But the Nets answered with a run early in the fourth, then took control after George's basket tied it at 85 midway through the period.
Justin Hamilton's three-point play snapped the tie and Kilpatrick followed with consecutive 3-pointers to put the Nets up 94-85 with about 4 minutes left. Lin closed it out down the stretch with some free throws and a basket in the lane.
"I thought Brooklyn came out and played harder than we did," Pacers coach Nate McMillan said.
Pacers: Myles Turner, who had 30 points and 16 rebounds in the opener, finished with 13 points and 11 boards. ... G Aaron Brooks missed the game with a sore right knee.
Nets: Lopez played in his 489th game, tying Richard Jefferson for seventh on the Nets' career list. Next up is Kerry Kittles at 496. ... Herb Turetzky began his 50th season as the Nets' official scorer. They acknowledged him during a first-quarter timeout.
The Nets improved to 3-3 against the Pacers in home openers. The Pacers' six visits tied them with Atlanta for the most frequent home-opening opponent.
Thaddeus Young scored 19 points. He spent 1 1/2 seasons in Brooklyn and was told last spring by general manager Sean Marks that he wouldn't be traded. Then he was dealt, getting dealt to Indiana for the rights to first-round pick Caris LeVert. He wasn't disappointed by the deal, even though he's still trying to sell his home in Brooklyn. "I think the farther we got into the summer, I think they realized that there wasn't any use in just holding me or continuing to keep me here if I'm trying to be in situations where I'm trying to win," Young said.
Kilpatrick, a Yonkers, New York native, has scored in double figures in 21 of his 25 games as a Net. He is 20-for-40 from 3-point range in nine career home games at Barclays Center.
Pacers: Visit Chicago on Saturday. The Pacers have lost their last three trips to the United Center.
Nets: Visit Milwaukee on Saturday, facing former franchise star and later coach Jason Kidd, who left Brooklyn in 2014 after one year to coach the Bucks.

Pistons roll in home opener, 108-82 over Magic

 If this was the final home opener for the Detroit Pistons at The Palace, they certainly produced a performance worthy of the occasion.
Andre Drummond had 12 points and 20 rebounds, and the Pistons routed the Orlando Magic 108-82 on Friday night in their most lopsided victory in a home opener. Tobias Harrisscored 18 points for the Pistons, and Marcus Morris added 17.
"It was a good team effort tonight," coach Stan Van Gundy said. "I thought everybody was involved and played well."
Pistons owner Tom Gores confirmed before the game the team is close on a deal to move downtown next season, so a run in Auburn Hills that's included three championships may be nearing an end. There will be time later to celebrate the history of The Palace if the move does become official, but Friday's win was a nice moment already. Detroit's 26-point victory broke a franchise record that was last matched in 1967, when the team played at Cobo Arena and the Pistons won their home opener by 23.
Ish Smith had 16 points and eight assists for Detroit on Friday. Aaron Gordon led the Magic with 17 points.
Detroit went on a 16-0 run in the second quarter to take a 44-24 lead, and the Pistons ended up outscoring Orlando 30-9 in the period. The Magic trailed 54-31 at halftime after shooting just 27 percent from the field.
There were so many missed shots by Orlando that Drummond had 16 rebounds in the first half alone.
"I thought that early on, too many guys were trying to get us into the game by themselves instead of trusting their teammates," Orlando coach Frank Vogel said. "Once it got out of hand, I think our shoulders slumped, but that's going to happen to any team that gets outplayed that badly."
Drummond reached 20 rebounds for the 28th time in his career. His rebounding has never been in question, but the big issue is whether he can finally improve his abysmal foul shooting.
He made his only two free throws Friday, drawing a big cheer from the crowd in the third quarter.
Orlando never made a game of it after its awful second quarter. The Pistons were up 86-51 after three, and even 7-foot-3 backup Boban Marjanovic got into the game at the end, much to the delight of the home fans.
Magic: Orlando finished the game at 35 percent from the field. ... The Magic were outscored 60-36 in the paint.
Pistons: Detroit is without PG Reggie Jackson, who is still recovering from a left knee problem. ... BackupsAron Baynes and Beno Udrih scored 13 points apiece. ... The Pistons have won seven in a row against Orlando. ... Drummond had 11 rebounds in the second quarter.
Detroit made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2009, so it was a bit of a downer when the Pistons lost their opener 109-91 to Toronto. Detroit evened its record out with an emphatic victory against the Magic.
"We know what it takes to win," Drummond said. "We had that taste of success last year and we know how hard we need to play in order to be a great team. That wasn't the team that we showed against Toronto."
Orlando had C Bismack Biyombo available after he was suspended for the opener for exceeding the flagrant foul limit in last season's playoffs. He scored two points in 22:51.
"We have to start playing as a team," Biyombo said. "We're out there playing one on one all over the court, and that's not how you win games in this league."
Magic: Visit Cleveland on Saturday night. Orlando's first three games this season are against playoff teams from 2015-16. The Magic lost their opener to Miami.
Pistons: Host Milwaukee on Sunday night. Former Detroit big man Greg Monroe is in his second season with the Bucks.

Irving, James help Cavs hold off Raptors 94-91

 Kyrie Irving had 26 points and LeBron James scored 21, helping the Cleveland Cavaliers hold offDeMar DeRozan and the Toronto Raptors for a 94-91 victory on Friday night.
DeRozan had 32 points for Toronto in the first of four games scheduled between last season's Eastern Conference finalists. Cleveland beat Toronto in six games on its way to winning the franchise's first NBA championship.
Kevin Love had 18 points and 10 rebounds for the Cavs. Toronto's Jonas Valanciunas had his second straight double-double to open the season with 10 points and 17 rebounds, while Cleveland's Tristan Thompson had his first of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Toronto never led during the first three quarters but then pulled within one point on four occasions in the fourth, finally going ahead on a free throw from Kyle Lowry with 2:37 left. Lowry had 17 points.
James tied it on a free throw 10 seconds later and scored two more points with 1:41 remaining to put Cleveland back in front.
A vicious, one-handed dunk from DeRozan tied it with 1:39 to go, but Irving's 3-pointer with 44.3 seconds to play provided the winning margin for Cleveland.
DeRozan had 40 points in Toronto's season-opening win over Detroit on Wednesday, besting Vince Carter's 65 points in 2003-04 for the most for the franchise through the first two games of the season.
Cavaliers: With seven baskets, James moved past Patrick Ewing (9,702) for 15th career in field goals made. ... With a first-quarter 3-pointer, Irving moved past Wesley Person (550) for sole possession of fourth place in 3-pointers made in franchise history. ... F Channing Frye did not travel with the team after his mother passed away following a long battle with cancer. Frye is on indefinite leave and will not play in Saturday's game against Orlando. He had kept his mother's illness from the team until this week. "For him to internalize it this whole time without saying anything to anyone is tough," said Cavs coach Tyronn Lue, whose own mother and grandmother are battling cancer.
Raptors: C Lucas Nogueira (ankle) sat out his second consecutive game with a sprain. ... Toronto won the regular season series against the Cavaliers last year, taking three out of four games.
Fresh off leading local Major League Soccer team Toronto FC to its first-ever playoff win Sunday over Philadelphia Union, U.S. national team striker Jozy Altidore was in attendance Friday. TFC continues its postseason run against New York City FC on Sunday.
Canadian sprinter Andre De Grasse, a former NCAA champion and three-time medalist in Rio de Janeiro, was given a standing ovation from the crowd in the second quarter. De Grasse, who hails from the local town of Markham, Ontario, received a personalized Raptors jersey from the team mascot.
Cavaliers: Host Orlando on Saturday hoping to extend their 14-game winning streak against the Magic. Orlando last beat Cleveland on Nov. 23, 2012.
Raptors: Host Denver on Monday to conclude a season-opening three-game homestand with their first game against a Western Conference opponent. Toronto was 17-13 against the West last season.

Leonard, Spurs spoil Kings arena opening with 102-94 win

 Kawhi Leonard ripped the ball away from Ben McLemore and drove the other way for a three-point play. Then the next time down the court, Leonard grabbed it away from McLemore and scored on the other end.
Those two plays turned the momentum San Antonio's way and sent the Spurs home with a very successful season-opening trip following a 102-94 victory over the Kings on Thursday night that spoiled the regular season opener at Sacramento's new downtown arena.
"He took two away in a row and said, `Gimme that.' He just grabbed it away from whoever it was," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "He just grabbed it and took it twice in a row. I don't see many people doing that."
Few people are doing what Leonard is early this season. After scoring a career-high 35 points to go with five steals in a 129-100 season-opening win at Golden State on Tuesday night, Leonard had 30 points and five steals against the Kings.
Leonard is the first player to put together back-to-back 30-point, five-steal games since Eddie Jones did it for Miami in December 2002.
"You see players play at an extremely high level on offense, but this guys does it on both ends," teammatePau Gasol said. "It's hard to say where he's more exceptional. He's a very special player."
Leonard helped dampen the excitement for the first regular season game at the new arena on an emotional night as fans remembered how close the franchise was to moving to Seattle before Vivek Ranadive bought the team in 2013 and reached a deal to build the arena.
It didn't end as well despite a strong night from DeMarcus Cousins, who led Sacramento with 37 points and 16 rebounds.
"As much as this city has fought, the fans were more than deserving of this night," Cousins said. "I wished we could have sealed the deal with a win."
The Kings built a nine-point lead midway through the third period before Leonard and the Spurs put it away. San Antonio went on a 16-2 run and held Sacramento without a basket for the final 7:20 of the period to take a 76-71 lead into the fourth.
The Kings missed nine straight shots and Leonard then had the steals from McLemore.
"I just tried to do something for us, lighting up our defense a little bit," Leonard said.
The Spurs built the lead to 10 points early in the fourth quarter before Cousins and Arron Afflalo made two baskets each in a 12-2 run that tied the game.
But San Antonio pulled away late for the win.
Spurs: The last San Antonio player with at least 30 points and five steals in consecutive games was Alvin Robertson in 1986. ... LaMarcus Aldridge scored 16 for San Antonio and reserves David Lee and Dewayne Dedmon added 12 apiece.
Kings: Rudy Gay had 17 points but shot just 3 for 10. ... Sacramento shot 40 percent for the game. ... The Kings have lost seven straight to the Spurs.
There were many luminaries on hand for the arena opening. Former Kings great Chris Webber sat next to Ranadive at courtside, Commissioner Adam Silver and his predecessor were in attendance, as well as several politicians integral in getting the arena built, most notably Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson.
"I think it's a borderline miracle from where we were in 2013 to be here in 2016, a year earlier than they originally pledged to have an arena done," Silver said. "To be done, to be here on opening night with the building completely finished with strong local ownership, it's everything a league could hope for."
Spurs: Play New Orleans in their home opener on Saturday.
Kings: Host Minnesota on Saturday in a matchup of two of the league's top big men in Cousins and Karl-Anthony Towns.

Clippers open the season with a 114-106 win over Portland

 Blake Griffin had 27 points and 13 rebounds and the Los Angeles Clippers opened the season Thursday night with a 114-106 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.
It was a contentious game that had fans booing the officials after two flagrant fouls on Portland players in the fourth quarter. Chris Paul hit a 3-pointer that gave the Clippers a 102-90 lead with 4:07 left and the crowd headed for the exits.
Damian Lillard's layup got the Blazers within 107-102 with 35.9 seconds left but the rally fell short.
It was the season opener for the Clippers, the last team in the Western Conference to start the season. Portland opened at home on Tuesday with a 113-104 victory over the Utah Jazz.
Paul also finished with 27 points for the Clippers. Lillard led the Blazers with 29 points and 10 rebounds before fouling out late.
The teams last met in the opening round of the playoffs last season. Portland dropped the first two games of the series, but Paul broke his right hand and Griffin reinjured his left quadriceps tendon, and the Blazers took the series 4-2. Portland would go on to fall to the Golden State Warriors in the conference semifinals.
Jamal Crawford hit a 3-pointer that capped a 16-0 run to put the Clippers up 37-27. Griffin's layup extended the lead to 49-38 with less than five minutes left in the first half. Paul made a 3 to end the half and the Clippers led 58-49.
The game got testy in the third quarter when DeAndre Jordan and Mason Plumlee got into a bit of a pushing match, resulting in offsetting technical fouls.
Portland rallied to keep it close throughout the quarter and Allan Crabbe's jumper made it 76-73, but Marreese Speights answered for the Clippers with a 3-pointer. It was tied at 82 going into the fourth quarter.
Raymond Felton put the Clippers ahead 90-84 but they couldn't extend it any further until midway through the quarter when the game got chippy again and Plumlee was assessed a flagrant foul.
That shifted the momentum, and the Clippers went up 95-89. CJ McCollum was called for a flagrant on Jordan, who missed both free throws. J.J. Redick made a 3-pointer that put Los Angeles ahead 98-89.
Clippers: The Clippers went after veterans in the offseason, bringing in 11-year pros Felton and Brandon Bass, eight-year pro Speights, and seven-year pro Alan Anderson. ... Los Angeles started Luc Mbah a Moute at small forward.
Trail Blazers: Lillard opened the season with 39 points against the Jazz. ... Chance The Rapper was among the fans at the game. ... The Blazers made just four of 18 3-point attempts.
TOGETHER: Paul, head of the NBA players' union, is one of a group of players that lent their voices to an NBA video to spread a message of unity. Along with Dwyane Wade, Kyle Korver and Carmelo Anthony, the video ends with the words "There's only one way to work through our challenges - together."
The Trail Blazers have been linking arms during the national anthem for the season's first two games.
The Clippers host the Utah Jazz on Sunday night.
The Trail Blazers visit the Denver Nuggets on Saturday night.