Among the more interesting results of Friday Night’s NBA action were the Philadelphia 76ers winning their first game of the season, the Cleveland Cavaliers looking rejuvenated after their visit to the White House and the Los Angeles Clippers possibly showing they’re the best team in the NBA right now with a narrow win on the road over the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Indiana Pacers 105 Philadelphia 76ers 109: The Pacers awful defense “helped” them become the first team to be beaten by the 76ers this season, winning in overtime. Joel Embiid led the Sixers with 25 points despite only 33.3% from the field, helped by 14 points off the bench from Ersan Ilyasova and Nik Stauskas.
Cleveland Cavaliers 105 Washington Wizards 94: The Cavs go back to winning games without too much of a problem, led by 29 points from Kyrie Irving and 27 from LeBron James, also adding 10 rebounds and 5 assists. It looked like the visit to the White House didn’t keep them off focus or something like that.
Toronto Raptors 113 Charlotte Hornets 111: The MVP’ish scoring performance from DeMar DeRozan early this season continue to propel the Raptors in tough situations. He scored 34 points despite not making a single 3-pointer, and has a 31.59 PER through the first 8 games of the season, only once scoring less than 30 points.
Utah Jazz 87 Orlando Magic 74: Another impressive defensive performance by the Jazz, holding the Magic to just 33.3% from the field at home. Gordon Hayward continues to lead the Jazz despite awful shooting percentages, scoring 20 points on 18 shots, while adding 10 rebounds and 8 assists.
New York Knicks 87 Boston Celtics 115: The Celtics torched the Knicks who looked the worst they have this season, struggling to cope with the 3-guard setup the Celtics are using these days. Isaiah Thomas scored 29 points to lead 7 players in double figures. Kelly Olynyk surprised with 19 points.
Los Angeles Clippers 110 Oklahoma City Thunder 108: The Clippers make another case for best team in the NBA right now, holding on to the win and avenging their only loss of the season so far, also by 2 points. Blake Griffin led them with 25 points and Jamal Crawford helped out with 19 off the bench. Russell Westbrook was one assist shy of a triple double (29 points, 14 rebounds), but shot just 36% from the field.
Detroit Pistons 86 San Antonio Spurs 96: A close game became one-sided late in the third quarter, as Pau Gasol’s 21 points ( season high for him ) helped the Spurs overcome a 5-for-18 shooting night from Kawhi Leonard. The Pistons fell to 0-5 on the road this season.
Sacramento Kings 120 Portland Trail Blazers 122: The Blazers win in overtime thanks to free throws from Alan Crabbe, who scored 16 points while helping out the team’s usual high flying scorers: Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, both combining to score 37 points. DeMarcus Cousins led the Kings with 33 points.
Eastern Conference Standings
|10||New York Knicks||3||5||.375||4.0||8|
Western Conference Standings
|1||Los Angeles Clippers||8||1||.889||–||9|
|2||Golden State Warriors||7||2||.778||1.0||9|
|3||Oklahoma City Thunder||6||3||.667||2.0||9|
|4||San Antonio Spurs||6||3||.667||2.0||9|
|6||Portland Trail Blazers||6||4||.600||2.5||10|
|8||Los Angeles Lakers||5||4||.556||3.0||9|
|15||New Orleans Pelicans||1||8||.111||7.0||9|