Kawhi Leonard back as Raptors down Sixers
LOS ANGELES, USA – Kawhi Leonard scored 31 points as the Toronto Raptors bounced back from their first loss of the season to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers in a hard-fought NBA Eastern Conference duel on Tuesday, October 30 (Wednesday, October 31, Manila time).
Leonard, who had been rested in Toronto's defeat against the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday, also had 7 rebounds and 4 assists after the Raptors saw off a late charge from the Sixers to seal a 129-112 win.
The victory saw Toronto improve to 7-1 while the Sixers are 4-4 after another uneven performance from Brett Brown's side.
Jonas Valanciunas scored 23 points while Kyle Lowry added 20 for the Raptors, who built up a comfortable 35-26 lead in the 1st quarter to take control of the contest thereafter.
"Good bounce back, good win," Lowry said afterward. "It was a good win. We were very active tonight, we were all over the place. It was a very scrappy night defensively and our guys played really great on defense."
Toronto led 67-53 at halftime and looked to be cruising to victory until a fightback from the Sixers late in the 4th quarter.
A three-pointer from Joel Embiid got the Sixers back to within striking distance at 117-111 with 3:30 minutes left in the 4th quarter before Toronto went on a 12-0 run to clinch the game.
Cameroon star Embiid led the scoring for the Sixers with 31 points while Robert Covington had 15 points. J.J. Redick had 13 off the bench.
In Boston, Kyrie Irving scored 31 points to lead the Celtics to a 108-105 win over the Detroit Pistons.
Blake Griffin had another solid outing for the Pistons with 24 points, but the Celtics subdued a 4th quarter Pistons rally to improve to 5-2 and move up to third in the Eastern Conference table.
Kyrie Irving tallies 31 PTS, 5 REB & 5 AST to lead the @celtics to their third straight win, 108-105 at home! #CUsRise #KiaTipOff18— NBA (@NBA) October 31, 2018
Jayson Tatum: 16 PTS, 6 REB
Blake Griffin: 24 PTS, 15 REB pic.twitter.com/vIBXmq1qiJ
In Houston, the Rockets' sluggish start to the season suffered another setback with a defeat to the Portland Trail Blazers.
Damian Lillard and Jusuf Nurkic each scored 22 points as the Blazers completed a 104-85 win over the Rockets, who have won just one game in 6 outings. Chris Paul led the scoring for the Rockets with 17 points.
Charlotte Hornets def. Miami Heat, 125-113
Sacramento Kings def. Orlando Magic, 107-99
Boston Celtics def. Detroit Pistons, 108-105
Toronto Raptors def. Philadelphia 76ers, 129-112
Portland Trail Blazers def. Houston Rockets, 104-85
Memphis Grizzlies def. Washington Wizards, 107-95
Oklahoma City Thunder def. Los Angeles Clippers 128-110