Golden State Warriors vs Charlotte Hornets 100-102
What a controversial ending in this game where Draymond Green lost the Warriors the game. The Warriors were up by 2 with about 9 seconds remaining and then Draymond got tossed after a double technical and Scary Terry proceeded to hit the game winner.
From Golden State’s end tonight, it wasn’t the best, but a few surprises occurred with Steph Curry being a late scratch. Eric Paschall scored 16 points and grabbed 6 rebounds on 50% shooting from the floor while Brad Wanamaker stuffed the stat sheet with double-digit points, 5 assists as well as 3 steals. Damion Lee also contributed with 14 points and 2 steals on 62.6% shooting. Now for these three players, statlines like this will not be replicated often and can be considered flashes in the pan. Someone had to pick up the slack with Curry and they stepped up nicely.
Kelly Oubre Jr. had a solid night with 25 points and 6 rebounds with 2 steals and a block while sinking 4 threes. Tsunami Papi tonight had to combine with Andrew Wiggins, who scored 19 points and grabbed 5 rebounds and drained 2 threes. Both of them are integral parts of the Warriors’ season moving forward as they are the next best options on the offensive end. With no Curry, they had to step up because Draymond Green was surely not going to score bucketloads. Speaking of Draymond, he posted a stat line of 5 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists with 2 blocks before getting ejected. Not exactly what we’ve been used to from Draymond lately, but I do believe this is just a one off. He’ll be back dishing out assists in the double digits and stuffing the stat sheet sooner or later.
Now for the Hornets. Anyone not named Terry Rozier had a really mediocre night. But let’s start with the good first. Rozier scored 36 points, shooting 62.3% from the field and hit 8 three balls. He also had 4 dimes to go with a steal and 3 rebounds. Rozier seems to be on a roll and this also seems to be a good sell-high point for all you Rozier owners out there.
Now for the rest. Gordon Hayward was underwhelming, scoring only 13. He did contribute on the boards, though, with 7. Hayward should jump back eventually, but lately, he has been sub-par. The rookie sensation LaMelo Ball had 7 points and 7 assists with a block on 30% shooting in 31 minutes of action. Ups and downs are expected with rookies, but this guys’ ups happen way more often. PJ Washington also returned tonight and scored 15 points and hauled 5 rebounds. He is one to keep an eye on as he has frustrated many owners lately, including myself.
Miami Heat vs Los Angeles Lakers 96-94
In this finals rematch from last season, the Lakers’ inability to hit those important shots down the stretch bit them in the rear end and allowed Jimmy Butler and the Heat to escape the Staples Center with a very important win.
For the Heat, the player of the night was Kendrick Nunn. He scored 27 points, shooting 71.4% from the field! He also had 5 rebounds with 2 steals and a block. Great night for Nunn, but something we should not expect consistently. Bam Adebayo and Duncan Robinson, both posted double doubles with points and rebounds while Jimmy Butler scored 24 points with 8 rebounds and 5 assists.
The bad side for the Heat now was Kelly Olynyk and Tyler Herro. Olynyk has been extremely volatile this season. In his last game, he scored 22 points and grabbed 7 rebounds. Tonight he had just 4 points, 3 rebounds, and 4 assists. Safe to say now that Olynyk will not be consistent, but still remains a hold in most leagues. Herro on the other hand had a bad night with only 5 points and 4 rebounds but it was not his fault. He did not return after halftime due to a hip injury so keep an eye out for his status on Sunday.
For the Lakers, LeBron James did not have his best game, but he was a good contributor across the board with 19 points, 9 rebounds, and 9 assists. Marc Gasol had a solid outing with 6 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 blocks and Montrezl Harrell provided a double double while handing out 1 assist and stealing the ball twice. Kyle Kuzma shot the ball 21 times and hit 8 of those shots turning them into 23 points. He did not do much else, however, and guys like Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Wesley Matthews did not have their best games sinking 3 and 3 triples respectively.
The Lakers seem like they need their defensive anchor and their starting guard back.
Phoenix Suns vs Memphis Grizzlies 128-97
Not much to ramble on about here as the Suns made quick work of the Grizzlies in Memphis.
Chris Paul followed up his 19-assist game tonight with 16 points and 6 assists while Devin Booker scored 23 points, grabbed 5 rebounds, and assisted his teammates 5 times. Mikal Bridges also had himself a good night, scoring 19 and rebounding the ball 6 times and stealing it once from the opposition. He was also very efficient as he missed one shot from his 7.
The ugly side in Phoenix though continues to be Deandre Ayton. He had another underwhelming night, scoring a measly 7 points and grabbing 6 rebounds. He did contribute however, on the defensive end with 2 blocks and 1 steal, but we all expect better from him moving forward.
For Memphis, oof. What a bad night all around. Ja Morant had a 12/5/5 statline on 41.7% while the only two other players that hit double digits in scoring were Jonas Valnciunas and De’Anthony Melton. Much of the Grizzlies’ team (Kyle Anderson, Grayson Allen), sat out to rest for some reason. Justise Winslow finally made his return after God knows how many weeks, months, or years at this point, but had an abysmal shooting night hitting only 25% of his shots.
A night to forget for the Grizzlies.
Sacramento Kings vs Chicago Bulls 114-122
The Bulls continue their good performances tonight with a victory in Sacramento over the Kings, improving their record to 13-16.
The Kings tonight had to play with no Richaun Holmes and Harrison Barnes again. In Holmes’s stead Hassan Whiteside drew the start at the 5 but only played 16 minutes. In those 16 minutes he scored 12 points and grabbed 7 rebounds with a block. De’Aaron Fox scored 20 and had 9 dimes with 2 steals. Fox continues his stellar performers, which are great to see. His backcourt partner, Buddy Hield, scored 23 on 47.6% draining three triples and grabbing 4 rebounds. Marvin Bagley also had a good outing with a double-double while Tyrese Haliburton scored 16 and stole the ball twice and blocked one shot.
For the Bulls, Zach Lavine continues to go bananas night in and night out. Tonight he scored 38 points and had 3 steals!. The young Coby White also had a good outing with 19 points with 2 assists, a steal, and a block. Wendell Carter Jr. continues to play his way back into form. Tonight he grabbed 5 rebounds, dished out 5 assists and had 2 blocks. Thaddeus Young, an emerging fantasy favorite lately, had another strong game with 18 points, 4 assists and 2 blocks.
The Bulls seem to be on a roll. Hat’s off to Billy Donovan.
Washington Wizards vs Portland Trailblazers 118-111
The Washington Wizards seemed to have turned a corner. Before this game, they had won three of their last four games against teams like the Celtics and the Nuggets. Tonight, they defeat Dame and the Trail Blazers and cause more and more eyebrows to be raised at the progress being made in Washington.
For the Wizards, Bradley Beal had another great game scoring 37 points, grabbing 7 rebounds and stealing the ball twice. Russell Westbrook had a triple double once again with a 27/11/13 statline. Other notable mentions for the Wizards tonight are Robin Lopez, who posted a double double, scoring 10 points and hauling in 11 boards with 2 steals and a block as well. Davis Bertans also cooled down from his last couple of outings, sinking only 2 triples.
For the Blazers, MVP candidate Damian Lillard dropped 36 points with 12 dimes and 6 rebounds. Words are scarce for a guy like Dame. Absolutely insane. Enes Kanter also had a very good game with 19 points and 13 rebounds on great efficiency (66.7%). Robert Covington continued his good form tonight, scoring 11 points, grabbing 11 rebounds and swatting 4 shots. Derrick Jones Jr. also came close to a double-double, only a rebound shy, and swatted 2 shots as well.
Have the Wizards flipped a switch? It may be time for a playoff push in Washington!