Kawhi Leonard, Raptors handle LeBron James, Lakers

LeBron James is finding it hard to stay chill about his season-ending cool down.

Kawhi Leonard scored 25 points, and the Raptors beat James and the Lakers 111-98 in Toronto on Thursday.

James scored 29 points and Alex Caruso had a personal-high 16 for Los Angeles. The struggling Lakers lost for the sixth time in seven games, further denting their fading playoff hopes.

Earlier this month, after consulting with James’ personal trainer, the Lakers said James would play limited minutes the rest of the season, and might sit out one of any back-to-back games.

“It’s challenging for me mentally, because I’m so accustomed to being out on the floor, especially when I’m healthy,” James said. “This is the direction they wanted to go the remainder of the season, given the lack of success we’ve had with our ballclub.”

Jazz 120, Timberwolves 100: Donovan Mitchell scored 24 points, Jae Crowder had 18 and Utah beat visiting Minnesota.

Celtics 126, Kings 120: Kyrie Irving had 31 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds and host Boston overcame a 17-point first-half deficit to prevail. It was Irving’s second career triple-double. His first was with Cleveland on Feb. 28, 2014.

Pacers 108, Thunder 106: Wesley Matthews’ tip-in with 1.8 seconds left was the decider as host Indiana overcame an 18-point deficit. Domantas Sabonis scored 26 points against his former team, and the Pacers won their second straight by erasing Oklahoma City’s lead in the final 15 minutes. Indiana’s magic number for clinching a playoff spot is one.

Magic 120, Cavaliers 91: Aaron Gordon scored 21 points, D.J. Augustin added 20 points and seven assists and Orlando won easily at home.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Kawhi-Leonard-Raptors-handle-LeBron-James-Lakers-13690482.php.

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