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Walker's 25 lift Celtics over Kawhi-less Clippers 117-112

BOSTON (AP) The Celtics have had trouble at times this season holding on to leads late in games.

Boston benefited from the surprise absence of one of the league's top stars to avoid that and post its first winning streak in a month.

Kemba Walker had 25 points and six assists, and the Celtics took advantage of a late scratch of All-Star Kawhi Leonard and held off the Los Angeles Clippers 117-112 on Tuesday night.

Jaylen Brown finished with 18 points. Jayson Tatum and Payton Pritchard each added 14 as the Celtics posted three straight victories for the first time since January.