PHOENIX (AP) — James Harden scored 20 of his 40 points in the fourth quarter and the Houston Rockets pulled away to beat the Phoenix Suns 127-118 on Tuesday night.
Josh Smith added 20 for the Rockets, who trailed 89-88 at the end of the third quarter after Phoenix rallied from an early 18-point deficit.
Eric Bledsoe scored 32, one shy of his career high, for the Suns, who enter the All-Star break losers of five of their last six.
Harden ended the first and second quarters with a 3-pointer, then opened the fourth with a four-point play that put the Rockets ahead for good. He scored eight in a row during a 2 ½ minute stretch late in the fourth. He scored 45 in a loss to Portland on Sunday and has six games of 40-plus points.
Houston, winner of seven of nine, has one game before the break, Wednesday night against the Clippers in Los Angeles.
GRIZZLIES 95, NETS 86
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Zach Randolph had 19 points and Marc Gasol added 14 and 11 rebounds for the Grizzlies.
Six Grizzlies finished in double figures as Memphis won its 14th of the last 16. Courtney Lee had 15 points, Beno Udrih scored 13 and Tony Allen finished with 12.
The Nets lost for the seventh time in their last 10.
Mason Plumlee and Alan Anderson each had 15 points for the Nets and Plumlee also grabbed 14 rebounds.
Memphis held a double-digit lead through most of the game until the Nets tightened it up in the fourth quarter.
BULLS 104, KINGS 86
CHICAGO (AP) — Pau Gasol continued his strong play with 26 points and 16 rebounds, Tony Snell had a career-high 24 and Derrick Rose added 23 for the Chicago Bulls.
It was Gasol’s NBA-best 34th double-double of the season. He now has 13 straight.
Snell was 9 for 11 from the field, including 4 for 6 on 3-pointers. His previous high was 20 points.
The trio combined to go 30 for 43 (69.8 percent) from the field as Chicago (33-20) won its third straight.
The Kings (18-33) have dropped 12 of 14. Rudy Gay led Sacramento with 24 points, while DeMarcus Cousins added 15 points and eight rebounds.
PISTONS 106, HORNETS 78
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Greg Monroe had 23 points and 12 rebounds, D.J. Augustin added 18 points and the Detroit Pistons handed the Charlotte Hornets their third straight loss.
Monroe, who had 14 double-doubles in January to tie a franchise record, was dominant inside and on the drive when the Pistons build a 23-point lead at the end of the third quarter. They coasted to an easy win.
Jodie Meeks and Anthony Tolliver each had 16 points for the Pacers, who are 16-9 over their last 25 games.
NUGGETS 106, LAKERS 96
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ty Lawson had season-highs of 32 points and 16 assists and Denver snapped a six-game losing skid.
Darrell Arthur added 15 points, and Wilson Chandler and J.J. Hickson had 13 points each for the Nuggets, whose four-game road losing streak ended.
Carlos Boozer scored 15 of his 21 points in the second half and grabbed 10 rebounds, and Wayne Ellington added 18 points for the Lakers, who fell to 0-5 this month.
Jeremy Lin and Wesley Johnson added 12 points each for the Lakers.