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James welcomed as hero, wins in return

(Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)

CLEVELAND (AP) Once the video tribute ended, a simple sentiment filled the giant scoreboard. Against a black backdrop, giant white letters delivered the heartfelt message.

Cleveland wanted to say something.

"THANK YOU, LeBRON," it said.

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Harden has 43 as Rockets extend run to 5

HOUSTON (AP) The Houston Rockets are on a roll, putting their terrible start behind them.

James Harden scored a season-high 43 points and Clint Capela added 27 to help Houston withstand a late run by the Pistons and get their fifth straight victory, 126-124.

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Giannis has 33, Bucks rip Blazers by 43

MILWAUKEE (AP) Giannis Antetokounmpo figured the Portland Trail Blazers might be tired on the second night of a back-to-back. He was right.

Antetokounmpo matched his season high with 33 points and finished an assist short of a triple-double in three quarters as the Milwaukee Bucks defeated Portland 143-100 on Wednesday night.

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Thunder roll as Warriors' skid hits 4

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Three Thunder players were injured and Oklahoma City still left Oracle Arena with a lopsided win against the ailing, slumping two-time defending NBA champions.

Russell Westbrook recorded his first triple-double of the season as Oklahoma City defeated the Golden State Warriors 123-95 Wednesday night, when Thunder rookie Hamidou Diallo was carted off on a stretcher with 7:17 left but avoided a serious injury according to the team after X-rays and Warriors doctors evaluated him.

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Lowry has 21-17-12 as Raptors down Hawks

ATLANTA (AP) Vince Carter grabbed his career milestone with a last-second dunk - long after his first NBA team had the victory secured.

Kyle Lowry scored 21 points during his first triple-double of the season and the Toronto Raptors never trailed while beating the reeling Atlanta Hawks 124-108 on Wednesday night.

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Grizzlies hang on to edge Spurs 104-103

SAN ANTONIO (AP) Marc Gasol and the Memphis Grizzlies dumped all the frustration from seven straight losses at San Antonio during a wild two-second sequence.

Mike Conley had 30 points, Gasol hit two free throws with 0.7 seconds left and Memphis beat the Spurs 104-103 on Wednesday night.

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76ers top Pelicans after Davis misses FT

PHILADELPHIA (AP) Joel Embiid is on a mission to win the MVP and Defensive Player of the Year awards. If he keeps up this pace, he'll make it easy on voters.

Embiid had 31 points and 19 rebounds, and the Philadelphia 76ers beat the New Orleans Pelicans 121-120 on Wednesday night after Anthony Davis missed the third of three free throws with 2.5 seconds left.

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Hornets make 18 3s to topple Pacers

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Indiana Pacers paid so much attention to Kemba Walker on Wednesday night they seemed to forget about the rest of the Charlotte Hornets.

Walker drew plenty of attention from the Pacers defense in the pick-and-roll after his recent scoring outburst, which allowed his teammates to get open looks from 3-point range.

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Cauley-Stein helps Kings outlast Jazz

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) After all but the last couple of Sacramento Kings had exited the locker room, coach Dave Joerger stood in the doorway and couldn't stop smiling as his center walked toward him.

"That was one hell of game, Willie Cauley-Stein," Joerger said. "Yes, one hell of a game."

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Nuggets hold on to beat Wolves 103-101

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Paul Millsap left the game to get stitches, then came back in time to help the Denver Nuggets stop the bleeding and get a big win.

Millsap had 25 points, five rebounds and five steals, Jamal Murray added 18 and the Nuggets had a 35-point third quarter in a 103-101 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night.

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