Kyrie Irving hit back-to-back three-pointers in overtime for six of his 40 points and the Boston Celtics rallied to a 121-114 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday night.
Irving, who forced the OT on a jump shot with 20 seconds left in the fourth, also pulled down 10 rebounds for the Celtics, who trailed 113-108 with 3:33 left in the extra period before rallying behind Irving down the stretch.
Ben Simmons’ two free throws with 2:15 left put the Sixers up 114-112, but Philadelphia didn’t score again.
Irving’s three-pointer with 3:01 left gave Boston its first lead of overtime at 115-114, then after a miss by the 76ers, Irving hit another three-pointer with 1:28 left and Boston fans leaped to their feet and cheered louder than they had all night.
Jayson Tatum and Marcus Morris scored 23 apiece for Boston and Terry Rozier had 10 points.
Joel Embiid led Philadelphia with 34 points, making 12 of 12 free throws, and pulled down 16 rebounds. Jimmy Butler scored 24, JJ Redick had 17 points and Simmons added 11 points, 14 rebounds and eight assists for the Sixers.
The Celtics led 57-51 at halftime, but Philadelphia used a 15-2 run in the third while shooting 60 percent in the period and led 89-86 entering the fourth.
Philadelphia shot 60 percent in the third quarter, hitting five three-pointers, and led 89-86 entering the final quarter.
Rockets 113, Thunder 109: James Harden is on a roll and it’s helping the Houston Rockets get on track after their terrible start to the season.
Harden scored 41 points and the host Rockets beat Oklahoma City Thunder Tuesday for their seventh win in the last eight games.
Harden has scored 30 points or more in a career-high seven games in a row, marking the first time a player has done that since Russell Westbrook had eight consecutive 30-point games in November 2016. He has scored at least 35 in his last five, which is the longest such streak since Carmelo Anthony did it in six games in April 2013.
The Rockets won just one of their first six games this season and were 11-14 after a three-game skid in early December. Since then, powered by Harden’s dominance, Houston has lost just once to improve to 18-15 and move a season-high three games above .500.
“We’ve had that confidence all year,” Harden said. “Our record isn’t where we want it to be, but it’s getting there. And we’ve got to continue to work hard every day, continue to get better and grow. We’re preparing for a postseason. We’re not going to be at our tip top right now.”
A three-pointer by Paul George with less than two minutes left got Oklahoma City within four before Harden missed a three. Westbrook missed a shot for the Thunder, but George stole the ball from Harden and was fouled by him.
George made both free throws to get the Thunder within two with 43.6 seconds left. Harden then drove past George and into the lane for a layup to make it 112-108 with 20.4 seconds left.
Westbrook made 1 of 2 free throws to cut it to 3 with 15 seconds left, and Austin Rivers made a free throw with 7.4 seconds left to secure the win.
George had 28 points and 14 rebounds for the Thunder, and Westbrook added 21 points with nine rebounds and nine assists.