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Red-hot Celtics stretch streak

JAYLEN Brown drops 30 points to lead the Boston Celtics to their eighth straight win following a 116-102 victory over the New York Knicks in the NBA regular season. | NATHANIEL S. BUTLER/ AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

NEW YORK (AFP) — Jaylen Brown scored 30 points and Kristaps Porzingis added 22 as the Boston Celtics stretched their National Basketball Association win streak to eight games on Saturday by defeating New York, 116-102.

The Celtics improved to the NBA’s best record to 45-12 and boosted their win streak to a season high while stretching their Eastern Conference lead over second-place Cleveland to eight games.

Jayson Tatum added 19 points, six rebounds and six assists as Boston had six scorers in double figures.

“We’ve got so many good players on our team,” Tatum said. “We always talk about respecting each other’s space. It’s about understanding it’s a rhythm game. It’s going to come back to you eventually.”

Tatum says the players adopt a long-term approach, keeping in mind the overall goal is an NBA title in June.

“We have a really good team and we understand the important goal, what we’re really trying to accomplish, so every single night we’re trying to share the love, play the right way and make sure we win more often than not,” Tatum said.

Jalen Brunson had game highs of 34 points and nine assists to lead the Knicks, who fell to 34-23.

Porzingis, who began his NBA career with the Knicks in 2015, sank two three-pointers and Brown scored five points in a 17-5 third-quarter Boston run that gave the Celtics their biggest lead to that point at 84-71 on the way to a 97-84 lead after three quarters — the Celtics hitting 68 percent of their shots from the floor entering the fourth quarter.

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