NBA roundup: Top scores, news from March 20 action

Mar 20, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) on the floor after injuring his leg in a collision for a loose ball during the second quarter against the Atlanta Hawks at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks earned their eighth win in a row, a 99-94 road victory over the Los Angeles Lakers, snapping L.A.’s four-game winning streak and keeping the longest winning streak currently in the NBA alive in the process.

However, the story of the day was an injury to Lakers superstar LeBron James, who suffered what the team later termed a high right ankle sprain when he was tangled with Hawks forward Solomon Hill early in the second quarter. After staying in the game briefly and draining a 3-pointer, James left for the locker room shortly afterward.

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Los Angeles already has two starters on the bench with All-Star Anthony Davis out due to a right calf strain and Marc Gasol working himself back into game shape after missing six games due to the NBA’s healthy and safety protocols.

Meanwhile, Atlanta’s leading scorer Trae Young had trouble finding easy buckets but did a swift job running his team, finishing with 14 points and 11 assists, despite shooting 6-for-18. John Collins paced the Hawks with 27 points and 16 rebounds.

Milwaukee Bucks 120 – San Antonio Spurs 113

Giannis Antetokounmpo had a quiet 26 points to lead seven players in double figures as host Milwaukee outlasted San Antonio for its sixth straight win.

Antetokounmpo tied a career high by dishing a season-high 15 assists and added eight rebounds. Milwaukee has won 11 of 12, including all five of their games since the All-Star break.

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Khris Middleton added 23 for the Bucks, with Jrue Holiday scoring 21. Lonnie Walker IV scored a career-high 31 points to pace the Spurs, who had a three-game winning streak snapped. DeMar DeRozan added 22 points and a season-high 13 assists.

Philadelphia 76ers 129 – Sacramento Kings 105

Tobias Harris had 29 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists and host Philadelphia breezed past Sacramento.

Shake Milton added 28 points and Danny Green had 18 for the short-handed Sixers, who played without starters Joel Embiid (bone bruise on left knee) and Seth Curry, out with a sprained left ankle. Then shortly before tip-off, Sixers point guard Ben Simmons was scratched with left knee soreness.

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Buddy Hield led the Kings with 25 points, including seven 3-pointers, while De’Aaron Fox added 16. Harrison Barnes contributed 12 and Tyrese Haliburton had 11.

Memphis Grizzlies 111 – Golden State Warriors 103

Ja Morant hit a short jumper with 2:27 remaining to give Memphis the lead for good and the host Grizzlies overcame short-handed Golden State to avoid a two-game sweep.

Jonas Valanciunas took advantage of the absence of Golden State’s top three big men to record a 19-point, 15-rebound double-double, helping the Grizzlies avenge a 116-103 loss to the Warriors on Friday.

Jordan Poole, once again starting in place of injured Stephen Curry, paced Golden State with 26 points.

Los Angeles Clippers 125 – Charlotte Hornets 98

Paul George scored 18 of his 21 points in the first half and also registered 10 assists to help Los Angeles trounce visiting Charlotte.

Kawhi Leonard recorded 17 points and four steals and Terance Mann scored 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting as Los Angeles won for just the third time in the past eight games.

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Lou Williams added 15 points and three steals for the Clippers. Marcus Morris Sr. added 13 points, Nicolas Batum had 11 and Ivica Zubac tallied 10 for Los Angeles, which connected on 52.3 percent of its shots and made 12 of 34 from 3-point range in the wire-to-wire victory.

–Field Level Media