TORONTO (AP) Golden State had to work hard to win 112-109 at Toronto on Saturday and extend its NBA record season start to 21-0, led by Stephen Curry’s nine 3-pointers and 44 points.
The Warriors’ superb start to the campaign has obscured some other strong early-season form by the likes of San Antonio, which improved to 17-4 with a similarly tight win against Boston.
Golden State is already 9-1/2 games clear atop the Pacific Division ahead of the Los Angeles Clippers, who had a narrow win against Orlando, while the pick of the Eastern Conference games saw Charlotte secure a creditable win at Chicago.
Curry was 14 for 24 from the field and 9 for 15 from beyond the arc, while Klay Thompson scored 26 points for the Warriors.
Kyle Lowry made six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 41 points for the Raptors.
San Antonio improved its home record to 11-0 by defeating Boston 108-105.
LaMarcus Aldridge scored 17 points, and Boris Diaw added 16 for the Spurs.
Isaiah Thomas had 23 points for the Celtics, who missed their last chance when the ball went out of bounds on an attempted full-court inbound pass.
Orlando’s five-game winning streak came to an end in Los Angeles, losing 102-101 at the Clippers.
Jamal Crawford scored 16 of his 32 points in the fourth quarter, while Blake Griffin had 28 points and 13 rebounds as Los Angeles won in the absence of injured guards Chris Paul and J.J. Redick.
Reserve Victor Oladipo scored a season-high 24 points for the Magic, who blew all of a 12-point lead early in the fourth.
Charlotte’s Nicolas Batum scored 12 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter go guide the Hornets to a 102-96 win at Chicago.
Chicago and Charlotte were tied 94-94 before Zeller made two free throws and Walker hit a jumper with 28.9 seconds remaining. Those two players finished with 17 points each for the Hornets, who played their first road game in 18 days.
Jimmy Butler scored 25 points for the Bulls while Pau Gasol scored 13 points in his 1,000th career regular-season game.
Cleveland gave a weary LeBron James the night off against his old team and paid the penalty as Miami beat the Cavaliers 99-84.
Dwyane Wade and Tyler Johnson scored 19 points apiece for the Heat, who held Cleveland to 36 percent shooting and sent the Cavaliers to their third straight loss.
Richard Jefferson started in place of James and led Cleveland with 16 points. James had played all the previous 19 games this season.
Utah’s Derrick Favors scored a career-high 35 points as the Jazz rallied to win 122-119 in overtime against Indiana.
Milwaukee used a 21-4 run in the third quarter to pull away from New York and went on to beat the Knicks 106-91, with Michael Carter-Williams scoring 20 points.
Houston’s James Harden scored 31 points to lead the Rockets past Sacramento 120-113 and to a third straight win.
Portland came from 17 points down in the third quarter to win 109-103 at Minnesota, with Damian Lillard overcoming a slow start to finish with 19 points.
Denver’s Danilo Gallinari scored 24 points, including the go-ahead slam dunk with under a minute remaining, to boost the Nuggets to a 108-105 win against hapless Philadelphia.