BOSTON (AP_ — Al Horford had 21 points in his return from a two-game absence for a concussion and the Boston Celtics hung on to beat the Toronto Raptors 95-94 on Sunday for their 12th straight victory.
Boston (12-2) was playing without Kyrie Irving after he took an inadvertent elbow to the face from teammate Aron Baynes on Friday night against Charlotte. Irving has a minor facial fracture but has not been diagnosed with a concussion as initially feared.
Jaylen Brown added 18 points, and Terry Rozier helped fill in for Irving with 16 points off the bench. Boston shot just 40.2 percent from the field.
DeMar DeRozan scored 24 points, and Kyle Lowry had 19 points and seven assists for Toronto. The Raptors dropped to 7-5 after winning two straight.
Jayson Tatum’s acrobatic layup with 1:26 remaining in the fourth quarter put the Celtics up 95-90.
DeRozan missed a potential go-ahead stepback jumper with 19 seconds remaining. Tatum got the rebound, but elbowed Fred VanVleet in the face for an offensive foul that was confirmed by video review.
DeRozan had another look to give Toronto the win, but missed a turnaround jumper with 2 seconds left. Serge Ibaka scooped up the rebound, but lost the ball as time expired.
Thunder 112, Mavericks 99
OKLAHOMA CITY — Paul George scored 37 points, Russell Westbrook added 27 and Oklahoma City overcame the absence of two regular starters to beat Dallas.
Carmelo Anthony was ruled out about an hour before tipoff because of a sore lower back, and starting center Steven Adams sat out with a right calf contusion.
Without Anthony, the Thunder’s other two superstars carried the offensive load, fueling a 26-10 run in the third quarter that broke open what had been a tight game. Oklahoma City improved to 6-7, missing its second straight after four consecutive losses.
Harrison Barnes had 22 points and 13 rebounds for the Mavericks. They have dropped nine of their last 10 games to fall to 2-12.
Rockets 118, Pacers 95
INDIANAPOLIS — James Harden had 26 points and 15 assists and Houston beat Indiana.
Indianapolis native Eric Gordon had 21 points for Houston, and Clint Capela had 20 points and 17 rebounds. The Rockets overwhelmed the Pacers from the start, jumping out to a 13-2 lead. Houston continued to pile it on early and often, outscoring the Pacers 24-9 during the first 6 minutes.
Pistons 112, Heat 103
DETROIT — Tobias Harris scored 25 points and Avery Bradley added 24 points in Detroit’s victory over Miami.
Reggie Jackson scored 17 points, rookie Luke Kennard had 14 and Andre Drummond added eight points and 17 rebounds for the Pistons. At 10-3, they are second behind Boston in the Eastern Conference and off to their best start since going 10-2 in 2005-06.
Hassan Whiteside had 20 points and 12 rebounds for Miami.