The one conclusion from a busy friday night of NBA basketball? The Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs, maintaining their undefeated status at home with two more mostly comfortable wins, remain a cut above the rest of the league.
Minnesota Timberwolves 132 Washington Wizards 129: A nice, happy win for the Timberwolves in double overtime that included a huge three-pointer by Karl-Anthony Towns, while the Wizards suffer a big playoff setback while the Pistons are getting away from them. Towns finished with 27 points and 10 rebounds, Zach LaVine added 25 points. Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 26 points.
Charlotte Hornets 105 Detroit Pistons 112: The Hornets losing ground in the battle for home court advantage in the playoffs, while the Pistons could be closer to making the postseason for the first time since 2009. The Pistons led all game long, getting 21 points from Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and 20 from Marcus Morris. Kemba Walker scored 29 points for the Hornets.
Orlando Magic 97 Miami Heat 108: The Floridian derby went the Heat’s way from the middle of the third quarter, getting a nice shooting night from Goran Dragic (22 points) to make up for the poor finishing from Dwyane Wade, while Hassan Whiteside carries on with his fantastic form, scoring 25 points to go with 12 rebounds and 5 blocks.
Milwaukee Bucks 90 Atlanta Hawks 101: A poor shooting night from the Bucks didn’t do much to disturb Atlanta, getting 18 from Jeff Teague and 14-13 double double by Paul Millsap, keeping Atlanta a step ahead of Miami and Boston.
Toronto Raptors 109 Houston Rockets 112: A win that serves the Cleveland Cavaliers the most, while Houston move up to 7th in the West. James Harden scored 32 points and Michael Beasley helped out with 21 points off the bench. Dwight Howard had just 2 and fouled out of the game. Harden also had 11 rebounds and 13 assists to complete the triple double.
Memphis Grizzlies 104 San Antonio Spurs 110: A huge night for LaMarcus Aldridge with 32 points helped the Spurs overcome a long list of absentees including Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green, improving to 37-0 at home this season.
Phoenix Suns 94 Sacramento Kings 116: Not something that matters except for some feel good, stat stuffing moments. DeMarcus Cousins was back, finishing with 29 points and Willie Cauley-Stein added 126 off the bench. Another former Kentucky player, Devin Booker, led the Suns with 26 points.
Dallas Mavericks 120 Golden State Warriors 128: A strong first half from Golden State made them too lenient in the finish, as the Mavericks brought the lead down to just three points with 3:18 remaining, serving as a wake up call to the NBA champions. Klay Thompson scored 40 points, Stephen Curry had 33 and Draymond Green finished with 19 in what is no longer even remotely out of the ordinary for this basketball juggernaut.
Denver Nuggets 116 Los Angeles Lakers 105: The bench firepower from the Nuggets carried them past the Lakers, who had 28 from Kobe Bryant. D.J. Augustin with 20, Jusuf Nurkic with 18 points and Will Barton scoring 16 got Denver to 31 wins, while the Lakers are only three away from a 60-loss season.
Eastern Conference Standings
|12||New York Knicks||30||43||.411||21.5||73|
Western Conference Standings
|1||Golden State Warriors||65||7||.903||–||72|
|2||San Antonio Spurs||61||11||.847||4.0||72|
|3||Oklahoma City Thunder||50||22||.694||15.0||72|
|4||Los Angeles Clippers||44||27||.620||20.5||71|
|6||Portland Trail Blazers||37||36||.507||28.5||73|
|12||New Orleans Pelicans||26||45||.366||38.5||71|
|15||Los Angeles Lakers||15||57||.208||50.0||72|