The Boston Celtics won their NBA season-opener against the Milwaukee Bucks after Jayson Tatum hit a late three-pointer in a thrilling finale.
The Celtics had a 17-point lead going into the final quarter and held off the Bucks when Tatum landed from 28 feet.
Last season’s NBA finalists the Miami Heat lost 113-107 to the Orlando Magic.
#SportESPN Celtics beat Bucks in thrilling ending: The Boston Celtics win their NBA season-opener against the Milwaukee Bucks after Jayson Tatum sinks a late three-pointer in a thrilling finale. https://t.co/irlJWZeEgf pic.twitter.com/yH7sUziFvk
— @globalfirstnews (@globalfirstnews) December 24, 2020
Evan Fournier scored 25 points and Aaron Gordon chipped in with 20 for hosts Magic.
The Washington Wizards lost to the Philadelphia 76ers by the same scoreline, despite Russell Westbrook’s triple-double on his debut. The nine-time all-star scored 21 points, had 11 rebounds and 15 assists.
Overtime was needed to split the Sacramento Kings and Denver Nuggets, with Denver losing 124-122 despite a triple-double from Nikola Jokic.
Jokic led the scoring with 29 points, 15 rebounds and 14 assists, but it was the Kings who took the win with a Will Barton dunk blocked but Buddy Hield snared the tip-in.
Meanwhile, the Houston Rockets’ opener against the Oklahoma City Thunder was postponed because the Rockets were unable to field enough players.
Three Rockets players returned either positive or inconclusive coronavirus results, with another four needing to quarantine after contact tracing.
NBA 2021 season: Boston Celtics beat Milwaukee Bucks, Miami Heat lose to Orlando Magic – https://t.co/uwhXsP9WAi pic.twitter.com/sai4nYt5Qa
— Mᴇɢᴀᴍɪxᴇʀ 🇳🇬 (@djokaymegamixer) December 24, 2020
Rockets star James Harden is unavailable because of a violation of the NBA’s coronavirus protocols and was fined $50,000.
Phoenix Suns 106-102 Dallas Mavericks
Boston Celtics 122-121 Milwaukee Bucks
Toronto Raptors 99-113 New Orleans Pelicans
Portland Trail Blazers 100-120 Utah Jazz
Denver Nuggets 122-124 (OT) Sacramento Kings
Chicago Bulls 104-124 Atlanta Hawks
Memphis Grizzlies 119-131 San Antonio Spurs
Minnesota Timberwolves 111-101 Detroit Pistons
Cleveland Cavaliers 121-114 Charlotte Hornets
Indiana Pacers 121-107 New York Knicks
Orlando Magic 113-107 Miami Heat
Philadelphia 76ers 113-107 Washington Wizards