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NBA: James Harden rallies Rockets in OT to beat Warriors; DeRozan, Spurs rout Raptors in Leonard’s return

Kevin Durant, James Harden
Golden State Warriors’ Kevin Durant, left, defends against Houston Rockets’ James Harden during the first half.
(Ben Margot / Associated Press)

James Harden hit a contested 3-pointer with 2.7 seconds left in overtime and finished with his second triple-double of the week and fifth straight 40-point game, rallying the Houston Rockets past the Golden State Warriors 135-134 in a thriller between Western Conference powers Thursday night for a sixth straight victory.

Kevin Durant’s long 3-pointer missed as the buzzer sounded.

Harden had 44 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds.

Stephen Curry put the Warriors ahead with 23.1 seconds remaining in OT on the way to 35 points, but Harden had one more improbable, acrobatic moment still in him. He released the ball with at least four hands in his face for the game-winner.

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He also hit 3-pointers at the 3:52 and 2:02 marks of OT in a game featuring dazzling displays on both ends by some of the game’s biggest stars.

Klay Thompson made a go-ahead layup with 40.6 seconds left in the extra period, then Harden tied it at 132 on a pair of free throws with 33.5 seconds left.

at Spurs 125, Raptors 107: DeMar DeRozan had his first career triple-double with 21 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists and the San Antonio Spurs welcomed back Kawhi Leonard with thunderous jeers in a victory over the Toronto Raptors on Thursday night.

Leonard scored 21 points on 8-for-13 shooting, but the anger the Spurs’ fans showered on him seemed to impact the MVP candidate. Leonard had to take a step back at the free throw line and compose himself amid chants of “Traitor! Traitor!” and “Quitter! Quitter!” from the capacity crowd that adored him during his seven seasons in San Antonio.

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Leonard forced his way out of San Antonio in a trade that yielded DeRozan and Jakob Poeltl from Toronto for Leonard and Danny Green.

Leonard was booed heavily from the moment he walked onto the court for warmup. The boos continued during a pregame video tribute and player introductions, whenever he touched the ball and as he walked off the court following the lopsided loss.

DeRozan and the Spurs dominated the battle of former teammates, leading by as many as 28 points in snapping the Raptors’ three-game winning streak. LaMarcus Aldridge scored 23 points for San Antonio, Bryn Forbes added 20, Derrick White 19 and Rudy Gay 13.

Nuggets 117, at Kings 113: Jamal Murray scored 17 of his 36 points in the fourth quarter and Denver beat Sacramento for its fourth straight win.

Nikola Jokic had 26 points and 13 rebounds, and the Nuggets maintained their lead atop the Western Conference by winning for the eighth time in 10 games. Mason Plumlee added 12 points and 10 rebounds.

Buddy Hield had 29 points to lead the Kings, who have lost three straight.


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