Sports

Kemba Walker scores 18 points as Bobcats end 18-game losing streak by beating the Bulls

Squandering a healthy lead is nothing new to the Charlotte Bobcats — hanging onto one is.

Kemba Walker had 18 points and eight rebounds, and the Bobcats ended an 18-game losing streak with a 91-81 win over the Chicago Bulls Monday.

Gerald Henderson added 16 points and reserve Ben Gordon had 15 to help Charlotte snap the second-longest skid in team history. It was the Bobcats’ first win in their last 10 road games.

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‘‘We’re a desperate team right now,’’ Henderson said. ‘‘This losing streak has been very tough on us.’’

Luol Deng scored 20 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for Chicago. Carlos Boozer also had a double-double with 19 points and 14 boards.

Charlotte fended off several rallies by the Bulls, who never held a lead, to win for the first time since Nov. 24.

Heat 112, Magic 110 — LeBron James had 36 points, 11 assists, and 8 rebounds, and Chris Bosh scored 22 points to help visiting Miami slip past Orlando in overtime.

James scored 8 points in overtime, including two free throws that clinched it with 1.5 seconds left. Dwyane Wade, who had 21 points, had a dunk with 6.2 seconds to go to give Miami a 4-point lead.

Arron Afflalo scored 28 points for the Magic and J.J. Redick added 23, but he committed the turnover that led to Wade’s decisive dunk.

Rockets 123, Hawks 104 — James Harden had 28 points and host Houston rebounded from its worst loss of the season.

The Rockets were coming off a 30-point defeat by Oklahoma City and had allowed at least 120 points in their last two games — both losses.

Monday night they used a 16-0 run in the second quarter to build a big lead and hold on.

Spurs 104, Nets 73 — Tony Parker had 20 points and San Antonio held the visitors to only 5 points in the third quarter.

Tim Duncan added 15 points and Nando DeColo had 11, while Kawhi Leonard, Tiago Splitter, and Matt Bonner chipped in 10 apiece for San Antonio, which went 9-0 at home in December.

MarShon Brooks had a season-high 16 points to lead New Jersey, which suffered its first loss under interim head coach P.J. Carlesimo.

Thunder 114, Suns 96 — Kevin Durant scored 30 points and Russell Westbrook returned from a cut above his eye to finish with 24 points, 9 assists, and 7 rebounds, as host Oklahoma City beat Phoenix.

Oklahoma City extended its home win streak to 12 games — longest in the NBA — and won on New Year’s Eve for the fifth straight year since the franchise moved from Seattle. The Thunder closed 2012 by winning 15 of their last 17 games.

Pacers 88, Grizzlies 83 — Paul George scored 21 points to lead host Indiana.

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