NEW YORK — Rookie guard RJ Barrett tied his season high with 27 points and the New York Knicks held on to beat Houston 125-123 on Monday night, snapping the Rockets’ six-game winning streak.

The Knicks pummeled the small-ball Rockets on the boards and in the paint to make a successful first impression in front of Leon Rose, the longtime player agent who was hired Monday as team president.

Julius Randle added 16 points and 16 rebounds for the Knicks, who held on after building a 21-point lead. They ended a nine-game home losing streak against the Rockets with their first victory over them since Jan. 26, 2009 – when Houston Coach Mike D’Antoni was on the other sideline.

James Harden had 35 points and eight assists for the Rockets. Russell Westbrook had 24 points and nine rebounds but missed a pull-up jumper on Houston’s final attempt.

Harden missed his first eight tries from beyond the arc to help New York build its big lead. He made his last two of the third quarter and then the Rockets got all the way within one in the final minute of the fourth quarter.

But the Rockets, playing without a traditional center, couldn’t overcome the Knicks’ whopping 65-34 rebounding advantage, or New York’s 64-36 edge in points in the paint.

TRAIL BLAZERS 130, MAGIC 107: C.J. McCollum scored 41 points and Gary Trent Jr. added 24 to help Portland win in Orlando, Florida.

Hassan Whiteside had 16 points and 13 rebounds and Trevor Ariza scored 11 as the Blazers ended a 3-game losing streak by outscoring Orlando 38-19 in the final period.

Nikola Vucevic led Orlando with 30 points and 11 rebounds. Terrence Ross scored 23 points, but the Magic struggled offensively in the final period, hitting just six of 21 shots. The 130 points tied a season-high for points allowed by the Magic.

JAZZ 126, CAVALIERS 113: Bojan Bogdanovic scored 28 points, Rudy Gobert added 20 and Utah began a four-game trip against Eastern Conference teams with a win over short-handed Cleveland, which dressed only nine players and used just seven.

Donovan Mitchell had 19 points and nine rebounds, and the Jazz made 20 3-pointers while staying in the fifth playoff spot out West.

Collin Sexton scored a career-high 32 points and Kevin Love scored 22 for Cleveland, which dropped to 3-4 under coach J.B. Bickerstaff.

Utah was flat for long stretches, and some of that may have had to do with Cleveland’s poor record and depleted roster. The Jazz seemed in control while building an 18-point lead in the fourth, but the Cavs kept fighting and were still within 11 with 6 minutes left.

GRIZZLIES 127, HAWKS 88: Gorgui Dieng had 17 points and 10 rebounds, leading nine Memphis scorers in double figures, and the Grizzlies pulled away in the second half to win in Atlanta.

HEAT 105, BUCKS 89: Jae Crowder and Jimmy Butler each scored 18 points, Goran Dragic added 15 and the Heat beat the Bucks 105-89 on Wednesday night — moving to 2-0 against the NBA’s best team.

Bam Adebayo had 14 points and 12 rebounds for the Heat, who improved to 39-22 and matched their win total from last season with 19 games remaining. Kendrick Nunn had 13 points and Kelly Olynyk added 11 for Miami.

“Collective effort,” Crowder said. “”All hands on deck.”

It was a season-low in points for the Bucks, set for the second straight day after Milwaukee managed only 93 in a win Sunday at Charlotte. The difference was from the 3-point line: Miami was 18 for 37, Milwaukee was 7 for 34.


KNICKS: Leon Rose has spent years as one of the NBA’s most powerful agents.

Now he will try to turn around one of its weakest franchises.

The New York Knicks hired Rose as their president, hoping he can sign and draft the kind of dominant players he’s been representing.

Rose is taking over a team headed toward its seventh straight season out of the playoffs. But teams such as Golden State and the Lakers have found success handing their basketball operations to an agent and the Knicks believe he can do the same.

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