Cleveland’s LeBron James had 28 points and 14 assists to lead the Cavaliers to a 121-117 win over Toronto on Tuesday, matching the best start to a season in franchise history.
The Cavaliers have now won nine of their 10 games, losing just once, equalling the record set in 1976-77, and are already two and a half games clear in the Central Division, ahead of Chicago, who won comfortably at Portland.
The Los Angeles Lakers kept up their strong home form with victory over Brooklyn.
Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving scored 24 points in another tense matchup between the teams who met in last season’s Eastern Conference finals and could get there again.
Channing Frye’s three-pointer from the top of the key with 59 seconds left put the Cavs up by one. Cleveland then buckled down on defense, holding the Raptors scoreless until letting in a layup with 2.8 seconds left.
Kyle Lowry scored 28 and DeMar DeRozan added 26 for the Raptors.
Chicago opened a six-game road trip with a 113-88 win at Portland, led by Jimmy Butler’s 27 points and 12 rebounds.
Dwyane Wade had 19 points for Chicago, who were again without Rajon Rondo due to a sprained ankle.
The Blazers, who had won five of six, were cold from the start, falling behind by as many as 26 points. Damian Lillard, who made just two shots from the field in the first half, finished with 19 points.
Los Angeles’ D’Angelo Russell scored 32 points as the Lakers defeated Brooklyn 125-118.
Russell hit seven three-pointers during the highest-scoring performance by any Lakers player in their impressive start to the season.
Los Angeles’ balanced play under new coach Luke Walton has put the Lakers (7-5) two games above a .500 winning percentage for just the second time since April 2013.
Julius Randle added 17 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists for his second career triple-double.
Brook Lopez had 30 points and 10 rebounds for the Nets.
Atlanta pushed their winning streak to five games with a 93-90 road victory at a Miami team which has dropped six straight.
Charlotte overturned a 12-point half-time deficit with a 36-17 third quarter that lifted the Hornets to a 115-108 win at Minnesota, led by 30 points from Kemba Walker.