Rockets hand Celtics 9th straight loss

The Sports Xchange/Reuters

Posted at Jan 14 2014 02:45 PM | Updated as of Jan 14 2014 10:45 PM

Rockets 104, Celtics 92

Dwight Howard scored 32 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and guards James Harden and Jeremy Lin each had 16 points as the Houston Rockets overcame a sluggish start to hand the Boston Celtics their ninth straight loss.

Guard Avery Bradley scored 14 of his 24 points in the first quarter for Boston (13-26), mired in its longest losing streak since dropping 18 in a row from Jan. 7-Feb. 11, 2007.

The Rockets (25-14) turned a nine-point halftime lead into a 20-point cushion late in the period en route to victory.

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Raptors 116, Bucks 94

Kyle Lowry had 23 points, five assists and four steals as the Toronto Raptors defeated the Milwaukee Bucks.

Ersan Ilyasova recorded 29 points and nine rebounds for the Bucks (7-30) who lost their sixth straight.

DeMar DeRozan added 19 points, seven rebounds and seven assists for the Raptors (19-17), who have won eight of their past 10 games.

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Jazz 118, Nuggets 103

Alec Burks, filling in for injured shooting guard Gordon Hayward, scored a career-high 34 points as the Utah Jazz snapped the Denver Nuggets' five-game winning streak with a victory.

Hayward missed his second consecutive game with an ailing left hip flexor, but his teammates responded with the second-biggest offensive outing of the season.

Derrick Favors scored 19 points with 15 rebounds for the Jazz (13-26).

Nuggets' Ty Lawson finished with 23 points and 11 assists, but Denver (19-18) fell for the first time since stumbling at home against the Philadelphia 76ers on Jan. 1. (Editing by Patrick Johnston)