NBA: Paul George and Kawhi Leonard send Clippers past Suns, Pacers halt Lakers' winning runs

Phoenix Suns forward Kelly Oubre Jr (right) blocks a shot by Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul George during their NBA game in Los Angeles on Dec 17, 2019. PHOTO: AP

(REUTERS) - Paul George scored 24 points and Kawhi Leonard added 20, guiding the Los Angeles Clippers to a 120-99 victory over the visiting Phoenix Suns on Tuesday (Dec 17) night in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Lou Williams, who returned from a two-game absence owing to a sore calf, had 20 points and eight assists for the Clippers, who are 14-1 at home and winners of five of their last seven contests. Williams converted five of seven three-pointers and made seven of 13 shots from the floor.

Los Angeles reserve Montrezl Harrell finished with 15 points, while Ivica Zubac had 12 points.

Kelly Oubre Jr had 19 points for the Suns, who lost their fourth consecutive contest. Deandre Ayton, who returned from his 25-game suspension for testing positive for a diuretic, finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds, seven of those on the offensive end. Frank Kaminsky chipped in 12 points and nine boards.

The Suns played without guard Devin Booker, their leading scorer at 25 points per game. Booker missed his third straight contest with a right forearm contusion.

The Clippers blew the game open in the third quarter. They used a 13-4 burst capped by a 3-pointer by Leonard with 2:16 left in the third to seize an 81-62 advantage. Leonard scored 12 in the quarter as Los Angeles outscored Phoenix 36-25 to take a 90-69 lead heading into the fourth.

Phoenix got no closer than 15 the rest of the way.

Meanwhile, Domantas Sabonis had 26 points and 10 rebounds to lift the Indiana Pacers to a 105-102 win against the Lakers in Indianapolis, snapping Los Angeles' seven-game overall winning streak and 14-game road winning run.

Myles Turner had 16 points, Malcolm Brogdon scored 14 and T.J. Warren finished with 12 for the Pacers, who stretched their victory streak to four games.

LeBron James had 20 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, Dwight Howard made all 10 of his field-goal attempts and scored a season-high 20 points, and Avery Bradley added 13 points for the Lakers, who came in with the best record in the NBA at 24-3.

Lakers star Anthony Davis sat out after spraining his right ankle on Sunday at Atlanta.

Elsewhere, Donovan Mitchell and Bojan Bogdanovic scored 30 points apiece to lead the Utah Jazz to a 109-102 victory over the Orlando Magic in Salt Lake City.

Joe Ingles added 16 points and 12 rebounds and Rudy Gobert recorded 12 points and 19 boards as Utah beat Orlando for the 14th time in the past 18 meetings.

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