Tag: memphis

The Suns would make a comeback to defeat the Pelicans in overtime, 133-126

The Suns would make a comeback to defeat the Pelicans in overtime, 133-126

Since both the New Orleans Pelicans and the Phoenix Suns have been eliminated from playoff contention, they have little to nothing left to play for.  This will be the 6th time in the last eight seasons that the Pelicans will miss the postseason, partly due to the distraction caused by rumors that Anthony Davis was going to team up with LeBron James in Los Angeles halfway through the season.

As for the Arizona ball club, this will mark the ninth straight season that the Suns will miss the playoffs.  The last time they made a postseason appearance was back in 2010 when Amar’e Stoudemire was leading the team in points per game.  They ended up losing to the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference Finals, 2-4.  As they host the Pelicans tonight, they will hope to avoid a second straight loss.

The Phoenix Suns and the New Orleans Pelicans have battled each other a grand total of 58 times in the past as both teams have a tied matchup record at 29 wins apiece.  This meeting will mark the fourth and final time that these two teams will play each other during this season.  The last time they saw each other was on March 16 when the Suns pulled away with a 138-136 win.  Devin Booker finished that game with 40 points, 5 rebounds, 13 assists, and one block while Julius Randle had 21 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists, and one steal.

INACTIVES:

New Orleans Pelicans:

-Trevon Bluiett (thumb)
-Anthony Davis (back; 25.9 PPG, 12.0 RPG, 3.9 APG, 51.7 FG%, 33.1 3P%, 79.4 FT%)
-Jrue Holiday (abdominal; 21.2 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 7.7 APG, 47.2 FG%, 32.5 3P%, 76.8 FT%)
-Frank Jackson (concussion; 8.1 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 1.1 APG, 43.4 FG%, 31.4 3P%, 74.0 FT%)
-Darius Miller (thigh; 8.2 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 2.1 APG, 39.0 FG%, 36.5 3P%, 78.9 FT%)
-E’Twaun Moore (quad; 11.9 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 1.9 APG, 48.1 FG%, 43.2 3P%, 76.3 FT%)
-Stanley Johnson (ankle; 6.9 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 1.3 APG, 38.9 FG%, 28.8 3P%, 78.1 FT%)

Phoenix Suns:

-Deandre Ayton (ankle; 16.3 PPG, 10.3 RPG, 1.8 APG, 58.5 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 74.6 FT%)
-Devin Booker (ankle; 26.6 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 6.8 FT%, 46.7 FG%, 32.6 3P%, 86.6 FT%)
-Richaun Holmes (ankle; 8.2 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 0.9 APG, 60.8 FG%, 73.1 FT%)
-Tyler Johnson (knee; 10.9 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 2.9 APG, 41.3 FG%, 34.6 3P%, 74.8 FT%)
-Kelly Oubre (thumb; 15.2 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 1.2 APG, 44.5 FG%, 32.0 3P%, 77.5 FT%)
-T.J. Warren (ankle; 18.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 1.5 APG, 48.6 FG%, 42.8 3P%, 81.5 FT%)
-Jimmer Fredette (coach’s decision; 5.5 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.8 APG, 32.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 100.0 FT%)
-George King (0.0 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.0 APG)

GAMETIME:

The New Orleans Pelicans would have the slight upper hand in the first half as they shot sixty-seven percent from the field, holding the home team at fifty-four percent shooting.  Former Utah Jazz’ guard Ian Clark got hot for 18 points while hitting 3 three-pointers in the first period.  He also had two rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, and one block while Julius Randle helped out with 12 points on fifty-five percent shooting.  Kenrich Williams saw to it that he got nine points on a perfect one-hundred percent shooting.  He also drilled a three-pointer to end the first quarter.  Solomon Hill played 12 minutes off the bench but only had three points.

As for the Phoenix Suns, Ray Spalding earned 12 points as he shot eighty-five percent from the field.  Troy Daniels also had 12 points off the bench, collecting them all from beyond the arc.  California-native Josh Jackson chalked up 10 points, which included two three-pointers.  Jamal Crawford played the most minutes off the Phoenix bench as he lit the floor up with 16 points, hitting two three-pointers in the second quarter.  He also had one rebound, 2 assists, and 2 steals but it was the Louisiana ball club that went into halftime with a 76-65 lead.

The Suns would come out of the locker room with more of a purpose as they went on a 52 to 41 run, completing forty-three percent of their shots, limiting the Pelicans to thirty-four percent.  During that run, Jackson added to his scoring total as he put up 17 more points, knocking down a three-pointer in the fourth quarter.  He also earned 7 rebounds and 2 assists while Crawford scored 10 more points off the bench.

On the other end of the court, Julius Randle earned 17 more points on fifty percent shooting.  Cheick Diallo played the most minutes off the bench as he had six points but it was the Arizona team that would complete the comeback, forcing overtime where they would eventually pull out a 133 to 126 victory behind Josh Jackson’s eight overtime points.  Josh Jackson finished the contest with a season-high 35 points, along with 9 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals while Julius Randle settled for 31 points, 14 rebounds, and 3 assists.

So…what’s next?

The New Orleans Pelicans will head over West to battle Buddy Hield (21.0 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 2.5 APG, 46.0 FG%, 42.9 3P%) and the Sacramento Kings (39-40) on Sunday at 9:00 p.m.  This meeting will mark the fourth and final matchup between these two teams this season.  The last time they battled each other was on March 28 when the Pelicans pulled away with a 121-118 win.  During that game, Julius Randle scored 34 points, pulled down 11 rebounds, and dished off 3 assists while Buddy Hield recorded 27 points, 2 rebounds, and one assist.

The Phoenix Suns will take on James Harden (36.3 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 7.5 APG, 44.1 FG%, 36.5 3P%) and the Houston Rockets (51-28) on Sunday at 7:00 p.m.  This will be the third and final time that the Suns and Rockets will battle each other during this season.  March 15 was the last time they saw each other as the Suns fell to the Texas team, 102-108.  James Harden finished that contest with 41 points, 9 rebounds, 11 assists, 6 steals, and 3 blocks while Devin Booker settled for 29 points, 5 rebounds, and 7 assists.

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The Trail Blazers hand the Grizzlies a huge 116 to 89 loss

The Trail Blazers hand the Grizzlies a huge 116 to 89 loss

Like most expected, the Memphis Grizzlies have been knocked down out of playoff contention for the second straight season.  Before the 2017-2018 season, the Grizzlies have made seven straight postseason appearances and one Western Conference Finals appearance.  Even though they are basically finished for the season, they will hope to avoid a second consecutive loss as they battle the Trail Blazers in Portland tonight.

As for the Portland Trail Blazers, they will make a sixth consecutive playoff appearance.  As they sit at the fourth spot in the Western Conference with a 49-28 record, they hope to capture a second straight victory tonight.

The Grizzlies and the Trail Blazers have met up a grand total of 93 times in the past as the Grizzlies grabbed 43 wins while the Trail Blazers went on to win 50 games.  This game will mark the fourth and final time that these two ball clubs will meet up this season.  The last time they saw each other was on March 5 when the Grizzlies handed the Portland team a 111-120 loss.  Mike Conley finished that contest with 40 points, four rebounds, four assists, and one steal while C.J. McCollum had 27 points, two rebounds, two assists, and one block.

INACTIVES:

Memphis Grizzlies:

-Kyle Anderson (shoulder; 8.0 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 3.0 APG, 54.3 FG%, 26.5 3P%, 57.8 FT%)
-Avery Bradley (knee/wrist; 9.9 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 2.4 APG, 40.8 FG%, 35.1 3P%, 86.0 FT%)
-Dillon Brooks (toe; 7.5 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 0.9 APG, 40.2 FG%, 37.5 3P%, 73.3 FT%)
-Mike Conley (ankle; 21.1 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 6.4 APG, 43.8 FG%, 36.4 3P%, 84.5 FT%)
-Jaren Jackson (quad; 13.8 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 1.1 APG, 50.6 FG%, 35.9 3P%, 76.6 FT%)
-C.J. Miles (foot; 6.4 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 0.7 APG, 36.0 FG%, 33.0 3P%, 82.8 FT%)
-Joakim Noah (knee; 7.1 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 2.1 APG, 51.6 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 71.6 FT%)
-Jonas Valanciunas (ankle; 15.6 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 1.4 APG, 55.9 FG%, 29.2 3P%, 79.5 FT%)

Portland Trail Blazers:

-C.J. McCollum (knee; 21.3 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 2.9 APG, 46.3 FG%, 38.0 3P%, 83.1 FT%)
-Jusuf Nurkic (leg; 15.6 PPG, 10.4 RPG, 3.2 APG, 50.8 FG%, 10.3 3P%, 77.3 FT%)
-Meyers Leonard (coach’s decision; 5.7 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 1.2 APG, 54.1 FG%, 45.0 3P%, 83.7 FT%)

GAMETIME:

The game would be held close at the beginning as the Portland Trail Blazers shot fifty-seven percent in the first half while the Memphis Grizzlies completed fifty-three percent of their shots.  Damian Lillard would score 14 points, earning three of those points from beyond the arc in the first quarter.  He also had four rebounds, seven assists, and one steal while Enes Kanter chalked up 13 points on eighty-five percent shooting.

Former Los Angeles Clippers’ forward Al-Farouq Aminu helped out with seven points as the drilled a trey late in the first quarter.  Rodney Hood also had seven points which included a three-pointer while Maurice Harkless earned five points.  Evan Turner played fourteen minutes off the bench but only had four points.

As for the visiting team, Delon Wright scored eleven points while hitting a three-pointer in the first period.  2014-2015 NBA champion Justin Holiday had eight points which held two three-pointers in the first quarter.  Ivan Rabb also had eight points, along with four rebounds and one steal.  Chandler Parsons played the most minutes off the bench as he had 13 points while the Oregon team went into the locker room with a 62 to 59 lead.

The Trail Blazers would pick up speed as they went on a 56 to 30 run in the second half, shooting forty-six percent, holding the Grizzlies to a low twenty-three percent shooting.  During that run, Zach Collins dropped eleven points off the bench while hitting two three-pointers late in the fourth quarter.  Lillard would only score eight points but had three rebounds, three assists, and one steal while Kanter also had eight points.

Rabb scored five points for the Memphis Grizzlies but it wouldn’t matter as the Portland Trail Blazers ended up blowing them out, 116 to 89.  Enes Kanter finished the game with 21 points, along with 15 rebounds, and a season-high and a career-high-tying 3 steals.  Chandler Parsons ended up with 16 points, one rebound, one assist, two steals, and a season-high-tying one block.

So…what’s next?

The Memphis Grizzlies will travel to Texas to take on Luka Doncic (21.1 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 5.9 APG, 42.5 FG%, 32.7 3P%) and the Dallas Mavericks (31-46) on Friday at 8:30 p.m.  This will be the third of four times that these two teams meet up this season.  March 2 was the last time they saw each other as the Grizzlies blew the Mavericks out, 111-81.  During that game, Jonas Valanciunas scored 20 points, grabbed 10 rebounds, dished out four assists, and committed one steal while Luka Doncic finished with 22 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, and 2 blocks.

The Portland Trail Blazers will head to Colorado to battle Nikola Jokic (20.1 PPG, 10.8 RPG, 7.3 APG, 50.8 FG%, 31.4 3P%) and the Denver Nuggets (51-26) on Friday at 10:30 p.m.  This game will mark the third of four meetings between these two ball clubs during this season.  The last time they played each other was on January 13 when the Nuggets snuck away with a 116 to 113 victory.  Nikola Jokic finished that matchup with 40 points, along with 10 rebounds, and 8 assists while Damian Lillard settled for 26 points, 4 rebounds, and 7 assists.

The Clippers clinch a playoff spot by defeating the Timberwolves, 122-111, earning their 6th straight win

The Clippers clinch a playoff spot by defeating the Timberwolves, 122-111, earning their 6th straight win

The Los Angeles Clippers have been on a hot streak as of late, winning 11 of their last 14 games.  They will look to grab their sixth straight win as they battle the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Target Center.  They are in high hopes of staying alive in the playoff race while the Timberwolves are still struggling to get there.  The Timberwolves have recently ended a five-game losing streak by defeating the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday, 112-99.

The Clippers and the Timberwolves have played each other a grand total of 114 times in the past as the Los Angeles team won 58 games while the Timberwolves defeated them 56 times.  This game will mark the third and final time that these two ball clubs will meet up this season.  February 11 was the last time they played each other as the Timberwolves pulled away with a 130-120 win.  Karl-Anthony Towns finished that game with 24 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals while Lou Williams earned himself 45 points, one rebound, 4 assists, and one steal.

INACTIVES:

Los Angeles Clippers:

-Luc Mbah a Moute (knee; 5.0 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 0.5 APG, 44.4 FG%, 33.3 3P%, 40.0 FT%)
-Landry Shamet (leg; 9.0 PPG, 1.6 RPG, 1.3 APG, 43.4 FG%, 42.0 3P%, 83.3 FT%)
-Justin Bibbs (G-League)
-Angel Delgado (G-League; 3.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 25.0 FG%, 50.0 FT%)

Minnesota Timberwolves:

-Robert Covington (ankle; 13.3 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 1.3 APG, 43.1 FG%, 37.8 3P%, 76.4 FT%)
-Luol Deng (Achilles; 7.1 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 0.8 APG, 50.0 FG%, 31.8 3P%, 71.4 FT%)
-Taj Gibson (calf; 10.8 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 1.2 APG, 56.6 FG%, 32.4 3P%, 75.7 FT%)
-Derrick Rose (elbow; 18.0 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 4.3 APG, 48.2 FG%, 37.0 3P%, 85.6 FT%)
-Jeff Teague (foot; 12.1 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 8.2 APG, 42.3 FG%, 33.3 3P%, 80.4 FT%)

GAMETIME:

The Los Angeles Clippers would set the tone in the first half as they shot fifty-eight percent from the field, holding the Minnesota Timberwolves to forty-one percent.  Danilo Gallinari chalked up 14 points as he had 3 three-pointers in the first period.  He also recorded five rebounds, two assists, and one steal while Patrick Beverley helped out with 11 points.  As for Beverley, he also drilled 3 three-pointers while dishing out four assists and blocking two shots.  Lou Williams, who is making a case for second straight Sixth Man of the Year Award and third overall, played 11 minutes off the bench but only had nine points.

As for the Minnesota Timberwolves, Andrew Wiggins put up 13 points while shooting forty-five percent from the field.  He earned three of those points from beyond the arc while grabbing one rebound and giving out three assists.  Dario Saric saw to it that he got 11 points while hitting two three-pointers.  Two-time All-Star Karl-Anthony Towns was limited to just six points, earning them all from the charity stripe, while recording 5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals.  Anthony Tolliver played the most minutes off the bench but was held scoreless as the visiting team went into halftime with a huge 75 to 55 advantage.

The Minnesota team would attempt to make a comeback in the second half as they sparked up a 56 to 47 run, shooting forty-five percent from the field.  During that run, Towns lit the floor up with 18 points, knocking down two three-pointers in the last quarter.  He also had eight rebounds while Wiggins contributed with nine points, hitting a trey in the fourth period, as well.  Both Josh Okogie and Tyus Jones had five points while Dario Saric added seven more points to his scoring total.  Rookie Keita Bates-Diop played the most minutes off the bench as he scored seven points.

The California team would still manage to close the game out as Montrezl Harrell threw up 12 points off the bench.  Danilo Gallinari had eleven points while Temple collected nine more points.  Lou Williams played 18 minutes off the bench, earning eleven extra points as the Los Angeles Clippers escaped with a 122-111 victory.  Danilo Gallinari finished the game with 25 points, 10 rebounds, 4 assists, one steal, and a season-tying-high six three-pointers.  Karl-Anthony Towns settled for 24 points, along with 13 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals.

So…what’s next?

The Los Angeles Clippers will head to the Fiserv Forum to battle Giannis Antetokounmpo (27.4 PPG, 12.6 RPG, 6.0 APG, 58.2 FG%, 24.4 3P%) and the Milwaukee Bucks (55-19) on Thursday at 8:00 p.m.  This will be the second and last time that they see each other this season.  The last time they met up was on November 10 when the Clippers pulled away with a 128-126 overtime win.  During that game, Montrezl Harrell scored 26 points, pulled down 9 rebounds, dished out one assist, and blocked one shot while Giannis Antetokounmpo had 27 points, 18 rebounds, 4 assists, 5 steals, and 2 blocks.

The Minnesota Timberwolves will host Stephen Curry (27.8 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 5.2 APG, 47.1 FG%, 43.0 3P%) and the Golden State Warriors (50-23) on Friday at 8:00 p.m.  This meeting will mark the fourth and final matchup between these two teams this season.  March 19 was the last time they saw each other as the Timberwolves fell short to the Warriors, 107-117.  Stephen Curry finished that game with 36 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals while Karl-Anthony Towns had 26 points, 21 rebounds, 4 assists, and one steal.

The Grizzlies avoid a third straight loss, defeating the Thunder, 115-103

The Grizzlies avoid a third straight loss, defeating the Thunder, 115-103

The Oklahoma City Thunder are hoping to grab their second straight victory as they look to stay alive in the playoff hunt.  They will hope to do that as they take on the Memphis Grizzlies at the FedExForum.  The Grizzlies, however, will not be making the playoffs this time around.  This will mark the third straight year that the Memphis team will miss the postseason.  If the Thunder are able to clinch a playoff spot, it will mark their ninth time in ten years that they do so.

The Thunder and the Grizzlies have played each other a grand total of 107 times in the past as the Thunder defeated them 71 times while the Memphis Grizzlies were held to just 36 wins.  This game tonight will mark the third and final time that these two ball clubs will see each other this season.  The last time they played each other was on March 3 when the Thunder escaped with a 99-95 victory.  Russell Westbrook finished that contest with 22 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals, and one block while Avery Bradley had 27 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists, and 2 steals.

INACTIVES:

Oklahoma City Thunder:

-Andre Roberson (knee)
-Hamidou Diallo (coach’s decision; 4.0 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 0.4 APG, 45.5 FG%, 16.7 3P%, 61.0 FT%)
-Raymond Felton (coach’s decision; 4.4 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 1.6 APG, 40.5 FG%, 26.7 3P%, 92.3 FT%)
-Patrick Patterson (coach’s decision; 3.8 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 0.5 APG, 37.6 FG%, 33.8 3P%, 63.3 FT%)
-Jawun Evans (G-League; 0.9 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 1.4 APG, 23.1 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Donte Grantham (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 0.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)

Memphis Grizzlies:

-Kyle Anderson (shoulder; 8.0 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 3.0 APG, 54.3 FG%, 26.5 3P%, 57.8 FT%)
-Avery Bradley (knee/wrist; 9.9 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 2.4 APG, 40.8 FG%, 35.1 3P%, 86.0 FT%)
-Dillon Brooks (toe; 7.5 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 0.9 APG, 40.2 FG%, 37.5 3P%, 73.3 FT%)
-Jaren Jackson (quad; 13.8 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 1.1 APG, 50.6 FG%, 35.9 3P%, 76.6 FT%)
-C.J. Miles (foot; 6.4 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 0.7 APG, 36.0 FG%, 33.0 3P%, 82.8 FT%)
-Joakim Noah (knee; 7.1 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 2.1 APG, 51.6 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 71.6 FT%)
-Mike Conley (thigh; 20.9 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 6.4 APG, 43.6 FG%, 36.6 3P%, 84.8 FT%)
-Yuta Watanabe (coach’s decision; 2.6 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 0.4 APG, 33.3 FG%, 20.0 3P%, 70.0 FT%)

GAMETIME:

The beginning of the game would be held close as the Oklahoma City Thunder completed thirty-four percent of their shots while the Memphis Grizzlies shot thirty-six percent from the field.  Paul George ended up scoring 14 points while knocking down two three-pointers in the second quarter.  He also had five rebounds and one assist while Terrance Ferguson helped out with seven points in the 16 minutes that he played.  The Oklahoma-native had a three-pointer late in the second period as he shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.

The 2016-2017 MVP Russell Westbrook was limited to just four points but he did manage to knock down a three-pointer in the first quarter.  He also had two rebounds and four assists while Steven Adams had two points, five rebounds, and two steals.  Dennis Schroder played fifteen minutes off the bench as he had ten points while shooting a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.

On the other end of the court, Bruno Caboclo chalked up eleven points while completing all four of this shots attempted.  He also had 3 three-pointers while Jonas Valanciunas earned himself nine points and eight rebounds.  Former Toronto Raptors’ point guard Delon Wright had nine points, as well, shooting fifty-seven percent from the field.  Chandler Parsons played the most minutes off the bench as he had eight points while the home team went into halftime with a 54 to 48 lead.

The Memphis ball club would close it out in the second half as they went on a 61 to 55 run, shooting fifty-three percent from the field.  During that run, Tyler Dorsey scored 14 points while drilling two three-pointers.  He also manages to record five rebounds and one assist while Justin Holiday helped out with thirteen points.  Ivan Rabb played nine minutes off the bench but was kept to just a field goal and a free-throw.

As for the visiting team, George continued to put on a scoring display as he added 16 more points to his scoring total while knocking down three shots from behind the arc.  Westbrook helped out with twelve points but it wouldn’t matter much as the Memphis Grizzlies handed the Oklahoma City Thunder a 103-115 loss.  Bruno Caboclo finished the game with a career-high 24 points, along with a career-high-tying 11 rebounds, two assists, a career-high-tying one steal, and one block.  Paul George ended up with 30 points, 12 rebounds, 3 assists, and one steal.

So…what’s next?

The Oklahoma City Thunder will host Bojan Bogdanovic (17.9 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 1.9 APG, 49.8 FG%, 42.3 3P%) and the Indiana Pacers (45-29) on Wednesday at 8:00 p.m.  This will mark the second and final time that they will play each other this season.  March 14 was the last time they saw each other as the Pacers pulled away with a 108 to 106 victory.  Domantas Sabonis finished that game with 26 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, and one block while Paul George had 36 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals.

The Memphis Grizzlies will host Stephen Curry (27.8 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 5.2 APG, 47.1 FG%, 43.0 3P%) and the Golden State Warriors (50-23) on Wednesday at 8:00 p.m.  This will be the third of four matchups between these two ball clubs this season.  The last time they met up was on December 17 when the Grizzlies fell to the Warriors, 93-110.  During that game, Kevin Durant scored 23 points, pulled down 3 rebounds, gave out 5 assists, and blocked 2 shots while Omri Casspi settled for 20 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, and one block.

The Kings come back from a first-half deficit to defeat the Grizzlies, 102-99

The Kings come back from a first-half deficit to defeat the Grizzlies, 102-99

It’s been twelve straight years that the Sacramento Kings have missed the playoffs.  The last time they were in the playoffs was in 2006 when Rick Adelman was the head coach.  The Kings ended up losing in the first round to Tony Parker and the San Antonio Spurs, 2-4.  Since then, they have yet to be above .500 until this season, winning 52 percent of their games.

The Kings are, however, trying to break a two-game losing streak and avoid a third straight loss at home.  They are pretty confident that they can do so as the Memphis Grizzlies will be visiting California to take them on tonight.  The Grizzlies have lost four in a row and if they fail to win tonight, they will suffer their longest losing streak of the season at five.

The Sacramento Kings and the Memphis Grizzlies have met up a grand total of 87 times in the past as the Kings won 47 games while the Grizzlies were kept to 40 victories.  This game tonight will mark the third of four meetings between these two teams this season.  November 16 was the last time they saw each other as the Grizzlies defeated the Kings, 112-104.  Jaren Jackson finished that game with 27 points, 6 rebounds, 4 steals, and 2 blocks while De’Aaron Fox had 23 points, 4 rebounds, 10 assists, and 2 steals.

INACTIVES:

Memphis Grizzlies:

-Dillon Brooks (knee; 6.8 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 0.9 APG, 40.9 FG%, 36.8 3P%, 77.8 FT%)
-Chandler Parsons (knee; 5.7 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.7 APG, 41.2 FG%, 30.0 3P%)
-D.J. Stephens (G-League; 2.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 50.0 FG%)
-Omri Casspi (illness; 5.4 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 0.9 APG, 56.3 FG%, 36.0 3P%, 60.5 FT%)
-Joakim Noah (heel; 4.9 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.1 APG, 45.5 FG%, 64.3 FT%)
-Ivan Rabb (coach’s decision; 2.6 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 0.7 APG, 63.2 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 71.4 FT%)
-Yuta Watanabe (coach’s decision; 1.3 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 0.0 APG, 33.3 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 100.0 FT%)

Sacramento Kings:

-Marvin Bagley (knee; 12.7 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 0.9 APG, 53.6 FG%, 34.6 3P%, 68.3 FT%)
-Skal Labissiere (coach’s decision; 3.2 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 0.4 APG, 40.0 FG%, 30.0 3P%, 54.5 FT%)
-Frank Mason (coach’s decision; 5.2 PPG, 1.4 RPG, 2.9 APG, 39.3 FG%, 19.0 3P%, 71.4 FT%)
-Ben McLemore (coach’s decision; 2.2 PPG, 0.7 RPG, 0.3 APG, 20.7 FG%, 31.6 3P%, 66.7 FT%)
-Troy Williams (G-League; 5.7 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 0.6 APG, 46.0 FG%, 34.1 3P%, 60.0 FT%)
-Harry Giles (G-League; 5.3 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 1.2 APG, 47.6 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 52.0 FT%)
-Wenyen Gabriel (G-League)
-Zach Randolph

GAMETIME:

The Memphis Grizzlies would have complete control in the first half as they shot 54 percent from the field, keeping the Sacramento Kings at a very low 29 percent completion.  Rookie Jaren Jackson Jr. ended up scoring 12 points while recording 4 rebounds, one assist, and 2 blocks.  Jackson Jr. knocked down a trey in the first period while Mike Conley also dropped 12 points, earning all of them from beyond the arc.

New Jersey-native Kyle Anderson chipped in with 8 points on a perfect 100 percent shooting from the floor.  Marc Gasol was kept to just five points in the 18 minutes that he played but was able to hit a three-pointer late in the first quarter.  He was also able to grab 5 rebounds but ended up turning the ball over four times.  Shelvin Mack played the most minutes off the bench as he earned seven points, hitting a trey in the first period.

On the other end of the floor, Iman Shumpert, who has missed the previous three games, scored 11 of the Kings’ 40 first-half points.  He was able to knock down two three-pointers in the second quarter while De’Aaron Fox helped out with nine points on 38 percent shooting.  Fox ended up hitting a trey in the first quarter while dishing off 4 assists and committing 3 steals.

The 2016-2017 All-Rookie selection Buddy Hield contributed with six points but shot a team-low 18 percent from the floor in the first half.  He earned all six points from behind the three-point line while grabbing five rebounds.  Willie Cauley-Stein only had four points in the 19 minutes that he played but did happen to get his hands on 8 boards.  Former Minnesota Timberwolves’ forward Nemanja Bjelica played 15 minutes off the bench but was kept scoreless as the Memphis Grizzlies walked into the locker room with a commanding 53-40 advantage.

The home team would make an incredible comeback as they sparked up a huge 62 to 46 run, shooting 48 percent from the field.  During this comeback, Hield added to his scoring total as he lit the floor up with 22 points, hitting four treys in the fourth period.  Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 12 points off the bench while hitting 3 three-pointers in the process.

Shumpert quieted down in after an impressive first half, going completely scoreless in the second half.  Cauley-Stein chipped in with eight points while recording five rebounds, two assists, and one steal.  Bjelica played the most minutes off the Kings’ bench as he dropped eleven more points.

As for the visiting team, Garrett Temple tried to keep the Grizzlies in it as he dropped 15 points, shooting 83 percent from the field.  He was able to drill 3 three-pointers while Conley had eleven more points.  JaMychal Green scored four points off the bench but it wouldn’t matter as the Sacramento Kings succeed in the attempted comeback, defeating the Memphis Grizzlies, 102-99.  Buddy Hield finished the game with 28 points, 8 rebounds, one assist, and one steal while Mike Conley had 23 points, a season-high-tying 7 rebounds, 5 assists, one steal, and one block.

So…what’s next?

The Memphis Grizzlies will stay in California to take on LeBron James (28.0 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 7.0 APG, 52.0 FG%, 36.7 3P%) and the Los Angeles Lakers (18-13) on Sunday at 9:30 p.m.  This will mark the second of three times that these teams will see each other during this season.  The last time they battled each other was on December 8 when the Lakers handed the Grizzlies a blowout loss, 111-88.  During that game, Kyle Kuzma scored 20 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, dished off 6 assists, committed one steal and blocked one shot.  LeBron James also had 20 points, along with 8 rebounds, 9 assists, and 2 steals while Wayne Selden finished with 17 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and one block.

The Sacramento Kings will host Anthony Davis (28.0 PPG, 12.3 RPG, 4.7 APG, 50.4 FG%, 33.8 3P%) and the New Orleans Pelicans (15-17) on Sunday at 6:00 p.m.  This will be the second of four games that these two ball clubs will play against each other this season.  October 19 was the last time they played each other as the Pelicans escaped with a huge 149-129 victory.  Nikola Mirotic finished the game with 36 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 assists while Willie Cauley-Stein settled for 20 points, 7 rebounds, and one assist.

The Spurs are able to hold off the Jazz, 110-97

The Spurs are able to hold off the Jazz, 110-97

The San Antonio Spurs are in danger of missing the playoffs for the first time in 21 years.  The last time they failed to make a postseason appearance was back during the 1996-1997 season, a season before they drafted Tim Duncan.  Since then, they have won five championships, the most recent one against the Miami Heat in the 2014 Playoffs.  Right now, they sit at the 13th seed in the Western Conference with a 12-14 record, hoping to grab a second straight win over the Utah Jazz at home.

The Jazz, on the other hand, are trying to make the playoffs for a third straight time, losing the last two in the Western Conference Semifinals; one against the Golden State Warriors and one against the Houston Rockets.  The Utah Jazz will hope to win for a third straight time.

The San Antonio Spurs and the Utah Jazz have battled each other a grand total of 210 times in the past as the Jazz won 94 games while the Spurs went on to win 116 games.  This meeting will mark the second of three matchups between these two ball clubs.  The last time they saw each other was on December 4 when the Jazz blew the Spurs out of the building, 139-105.  Donovan Mitchell finished that game with 20 points, one rebound, 2 assists, and 2 steals while Jakob Poeltl had 20 points, 7 rebound, one assist, and one block.

INACTIVES:

San Antonio Spurs:

-Dante Cunningham (abdomen; 4.3 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 1.3 APG, 44.7 FG%, 44.2 3P%, 90.0 FT%)
-Pau Gasol (foot; 6.8 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 3.3 APG, 51.2 FG%, 57.1 3P%, 72.2 FT%)
-Dejounte Murray (knee)
-Davis Bertans (personal; 7.2 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 0.9 APG, 48.0 FG%, 44.9 3P%, 93.3 FT%)
-Lonnie Walker (G-League)
-Ben Moore (G-League)

Utah Jazz:

-Tony Bradley (G-League)
-Naz Mitrou-Long (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 0.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Georges Niang (3.3 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.5 APG, 44.0 FG%, 38.2 3P%, 85.7 FT%)
-Tyler Cavanaugh (G-League)

GAMETIME:

The San Antonio Spurs would show dominance in the first half as they shot 50 percent from the field, limiting the Utah Jazz to 36 percent shooting.  DeMar DeRozan, who averaged 20 points a game in his first 9 years with the Raptors, got hot for 16 points in the first half of this contest.  He also had 5 defensive rebounds and 2 steals while LaMarcus Aldridge chipped in with 14 points on 78 percent shooting.  Aldridge used his 6’11” height to his advantage as he pulled down 5 boards and blocked 2 shots from going in.

Brooklyn-native Rudy Gay was kept to just three points in the half while Bryn Forbes was able to cough up four points.  Derrick White scored only two points in the 16 minutes that he played as he attempted just three shots.  Marco Belinelli, who averaged a career-high 14 points last season, played the most minutes off the bench as he scored 8 points, including two 3-pointers in the first.

On the other end of the court, the Jazz’s leading scorer this season, Donovan Mitchell, was kept completely scoreless in the 18 minutes that he played in the first half.  He did manage to grab 3 defensive rebounds while stealing the ball twice from his opponent.  Thabo Sefolosha came off the bench to carry the load as he had 9 points, shooting a perfect 100 percent from the field.  He also had a trey while Rudy Gobert helped out with 7 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and one block.  Ricky Rubio also had seven points which held a three-pointer in the first period.  Royce O’Neale played 13 minutes off the bench as he had 5 points but it was the home team that went into halftime with a huge 54 to 36 lead.

Mitchell came out of the locker room hot as he lit the floor up with 27 points to make up for his poor performance in the first half.  He shot 53 percent from the field while hitting 3 three-pointers.  Rubio also scored more in this half as he had 19 points, finishing the game out with a total of 26 points.  Gobert added 5 more points to his scoring total while Derrick Favors had only two points, going scoreless in the first session.  O’Neale played the most minutes off the bench as he didn’t even attempt a shot.

As for the 5-time champions, Gay made up for his first-half performance as he had 20 points on 90 percent shooting.  He also had 10 rebounds, 2 assists, one steal, and one block while DeRozan saw to it that he got 12 points.  Forbes was able to get it going as he earned 11 points while LaMarcus Aldridge had just six points.  Former Portland Trail Blazers guard Patty Mills played 14 minutes off the bench as he had just a three-pointer but the Spurs were still able to hand the Jazz a 110-97 defeat.  DeMar DeRozan finished the game with 26 points, 6 rebounds, 8 assists, 2 steals, and one block while Donovan Mitchell had 27 points, 5 rebounds, one assist, 2 steals, and one block.

So…what’s next?

The San Antonio Spurs will host Deandre Ayton (15.8 PPG, 10.1 RPG, 2.5 APG, 59.5 FG%, 00.0 3P%) and the struggling Phoenix Suns (4-22) on Tuesday at 8:30 p.m.  This game will mark the third of four times that these teams will battle each other during this season.  The last time they saw each other was on November 14 when the Spurs fell to the Suns, 96-116.  During that game, T.J. Warren scored 27 points, pulled down 4 rebounds, gave out 2 assists, and committed 3 steals while DeMar DeRozan finished with 24 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assists.

The Utah Jazz will visit Oklahoma to take on Paul George (24.0 PPG, 8.0 RPG, 4.4 APG, 42.3 FG%, 35.2 3P%) and the Oklahoma City Thunder (16-8) on Monday at 8:00 p.m.  This will be the first of four matchups between these teams this season.  Last season, the Oklahoma City Thunder won the regular-season series, 3-1, but ended up losing in the first round of those playoffs to the Jazz, 2-4.

The Memphis Grizzlies overpower the New Orleans Pelicans, 107-103

The Memphis Grizzlies overpower the New Orleans Pelicans, 107-103

The Memphis Grizzlies are currently in the midst of recovering from one of their worst seasons ever as they finished last year with a 22-60 record.  Last time they had a record that bad was back in the 2007-2008 season, the year before they drafted Marc Gasol.  The Grizzlies are coming fresh off a 96-86 win that earned over the impressive Los Angeles Clippers, who are also recovering from a disappointing previous season.  The Grizzlies will look to grab a second straight win over the New Orleans Pelicans.

As for the Pelicans, their season isn’t going as they planned as they are sitting at the eleventh spot in the Western Conference with a 13-13 record.  Last year, they made the Playoffs but fell to the Golden State Warriors in the Semifinals, 1-4.  Since then, they have been without DeMarcus Cousins, who averaged twenty-five points a game in the two seasons he spent with them.

The Memphis Grizzlies and the New Orleans Pelicans have battled each other a total of 60 times in the past as the Pelicans defeated the Grizzlies 32 times while the Pelicans captured 28 wins.  This meeting between the two teams tonight will mark the first of four times that these two ball clubs will see each other during this season.  Last season, the regular-season series between these teams were tied at two apiece.

INACTIVES:

Memphis Grizzlies:

-Dillon Brooks (knee; 6.8 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 0.9 APG, 40.9 FG%, 36.8 3P%, 77.8 FT%)
-Chandler Parsons (knee; 5.7 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.7 APG, 41.2 FG%, 30.0 3P%)
-Wayne Selden (coach’s decision; 5.8 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 1.3 APG, 41.1 FG%, 34.1 3P%, 86.7 FT%)
-D.J. Stephens (coach’s decision)
-Jevon Carter (G-League)
-Ivan Rabb (G-League; 2.1 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 0.7 APG, 61.5 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 60.0 FT%)
-Yuta Watanabe (G-League; 1.0 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 0.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 100.0 FT%)

New Orleans Pelicans:

-Nikola Mirotic (illness; 18.9 PPG, 10.0 RPG, 1.1 APG, 46.5 FG%, 36.4 3P%, 83.8 FT%)
-Elfrid Payton (finger; 9.7 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 5.3 APG, 47.1 FG%, 42.9 3P%, 63.6 FT%)
-Ian Clark (coach’s decision; 4.0 PPG, 1.5 RPG, 1.3 APG, 37.0 FG%, 31.1 3P%, 90.0 FT%)
-Andrew Harrison (coach’s decision; 3.8 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 1.4 APG, 31.0 FG%, 20.0 3P%, 100.0 FT%)
-Wesley Johnson (coach’s decision; 4.4 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 0.8 APG, 42.1 FG%, 43.2 3P%, 83.3 FT%)
-Jahlil Okafor (coach’s decision; 3.0 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 0.1 APG, 50.0 FG%, 100.0 FT%)
-Trevon Bluiett (G-League)
-Frank Jackson (G-League; 4.3 PPG, 0.7 RPG, 0.6 APG, 36.5 FG%, 29.6 3P%, 71.4 FT%)
-Kenrich Williams (0.8 PPG, 0.8 RPG, 0.0 APG, 33.3 FG%, 50.0 3P%)

GAMETIME:

Both teams made it very clear that this will not be a game that one would run away with as the Grizzlies closed the first quarter out with a 31-30 lead.  The New Orleans Pelicans  ended up shooting 55 percent from the field in the first half while the Memphis Grizzlies completed 49 percent of their shots.  Marc Gasol chalked up 12 points in the first half, earning four of those points from the free-throw line.  This would mark Joakim Noah’s second game in a Grizzlies uniform as he scored four points in his season debut against the Los Angeles Clippers.

Noah looked a little better this time around as he put up nine points on 80 percent shooting.  He also had four defensive rebounds and two assists as he came off the bench.  Mike Conley, who is averaging a career-high 21 points this season, struggled from the field as he made only 2 of his 6 shots, finishing the game with nine points.  Former Philadelphia 76ers guard Shelvin Mack played the most minutes off the bench but was held scoreless, only attempting 3 shots.

As for the Pelicans, Anthony Davis tallied 6 points in the first quarter and 13 points in the second quarter.  He shot 73 percent from the field while pulling down six rebounds, committed one steal, and preventing three shots from going in.  Julius Randle, who averaged 19 points for the Los Angeles Lakers last season, scored 13 points while Jrue Holiday chipped in 12 points.  E’Twaun Moore played 11 eleven minutes off the bench but only had two points to show for it as the home team walked into the locker room with a tight 60-58 lead over the Memphis team.

The Grizzlies would take it upon themselves to close things out as they sparked up a 49 to 43 run, limiting the Louisiana team to just 36 percent shooting.  JaMychal Green scored 13 points off the bench while New York-native Kyle Anderson had 12 points.  Both Green and Anderson had a three-pointer in the third quarter while shooting 71 percent from the field each.  Marc Gasol and Mike Conley would be limited to just three points each but Conley would take his from the charity stripe while Gasol had a trey.

Randle tried his best to keep the Pelicans involved with 13 points, along with 9 rebounds and 2 steals.  But it wouldn’t help that he had two turnovers.  Davis, who has averaged a double-double in all but one of his seasons (his first season), was kept to just six points on 20 percent shooting.  But he did have 5 rebounds, 3 assists, one steal, and one block in the final 17 minutes that he played.  Holiday helped out with 8 points but it was Memphis Grizzlies who pulled away with a 107-103 win.  JaMychal Green finished with a season-high 24 points, along with 8 rebounds, 2 assists, and a season-high three 3-pointers.  Julius Randle had 26 points, 13 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals.

So…what’s next?

The Memphis Grizzlies will host LeBron James (28.4 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 6.6 APG, 52.5 FG%, 36.9 3P%) and the Los Angeles Lakers (15-9) on Saturday at 8:00 p.m.  This game will mark the first of three times that these two teams will fight each other this season.  They tied the regular-season series up two apiece last season.

The New Orleans Pelicans will travel to Michigan to take on Blake Griffin (24.9 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 5.0 APG, 46.4 FG%, 36.2 3P%) and the Detroit Pistons (13-9) on Sunday at 3:30 p.m.  This will be the first of two times that these squads will see each other this season.  The Pelicans were able to sweep the Pistons last season in their regular-season series, 2-0.

The Chicago Bulls push through the Oklahoma City Thunder, 114-112

The Chicago Bulls push through the Oklahoma City Thunder, 114-112

The Chicago Bulls are currently trying to avoid an 8th straight loss as they take on the Oklahoma City Thunder in the United Center.  The last time the Bulls suffered an 8-game losing streak was last year when they lost a total of 10 straight.  They are tied with the Atlanta Hawks for the worst record in the East at 5-20 and at risk of missing the playoff for a second straight time.

As for the Thunder, they are coming fresh off a 114-112 win against the Brooklyn Nets, all thanks to Paul George, who nailed a clutch 3-pointer to secure the win.  They are looking for their 5th straight victory.  The Thunder and the Bulls have played each other a grand total of 151 times in the past as the Thunder won 74 games while the Chicago team pulled out 77 wins.  This will mark the first of two matchups between these ball clubs this season.  The Thunder swept the Chicago Bulls last season in their season series, 2-0.

INACTIVES:

Oklahoma City Thunder:

-Andre Roberson (knee)
-Deonte Burton (coach’s decision; 3.5 PPG, 1.1 RPG, 0.4 APG, 44.4 FG%, 33.3 3P%, 83.3 FT%)
-Raymond Felton (coach’s decision; 4.8 PPG, 1.5 RPG, 1.8 APG, 35.2 FG%, 17.9 3P%, 88.9 FT%)
-Abdel Nader (coach’s decision; 1.2 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.1 APG, 50.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (2.5 PPG, 1.1 RPG, 0.3 APG, 33.3 FG%, 25.0 3P%, 66.7 FT%)
-Tyler Davis (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 0.0 FG%)

Chicago Bulls:

-Kris Dunn (knee; 9.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 7.0 APG, 30.8 FG%, 25.0 3P%)
-Bobby Portis (knee; 10.5 PPG, 10.0 RPG, 2.0 APG, 41.5 FG%, 27.3 3P%, 55.6 FT%)
-Denzel Valentine (ankle)
-Antonio Blakeney (coach’s decision; 9.7 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 0.5 APG, 44.0 FG%, 44.8 3P%, 63.6 FT%)
-Cristiano Felicio (coach’s decision; 3.6 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 0.6 APG, 56.8 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 77.8 FT%)
-Tyler Ulis (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG)
-Rawle Alkins (G-League)

GAMETIME:

The Chicago Bulls would have control in the first half as they completed 57 percent of the shots they put up, limiting the Oklahoma City Thunder to 46 percent shooting.  The 2018-2018 All-Rookie selection Lauri Markkanen scored 16 points while knocking down four 3-pointers.  He also had 3 rebounds while Zach LaVine contributed with 13 points, 3 defensive rebounds, and 6 assists.  He was able to drill a trey midway through the first session while Ryan Arcidiacono had a 3-pointer in the first period.  He finished the game with just those three points.  Robin Lopez played the most minutes off the bench as he chipped in with 10 points.

On the other end of the court, Steven Adams put up 17 of Oklahoma City’s 62 points while pulling down 5 rebounds but had three turnovers.  Paul George scored 16 points which included a 3-pointer before the first quarter expired.  He shot 63 percent from the field in the first half but struggled overall as he only made 6 of his 16 shots attempted in the game, ending with 38 percent shooting from the field, lowest of all five Thunder starters.

Russell Westbrook recorded 9 points, 10 rebounds, 8 assists, and 2 steals while Terrance Ferguson was held scoreless in the 14 minutes that he played, attempting only two shots.  Former Atlanta Hawks point guard Dennis Schroder played the most minutes of all the reserves in the first half as he gave eleven points but it was the home team who went in the break with a 70 to 62 advantage.

The Thunder would not give up, though, as they came out of the locker room to spark a 50-44 run, including a big 29-17 run in the third period.  During that time, Westbrook added 15 more points to his scoring total while knocking down two 3-pointers.  He also collected 7 more rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals but had 7 turnovers.  George would start to see his shooting decline as he only scored three points, earning them from beyond the arc just one minute into the third.

MARKKANEN SAVES THE DAY:

With 34 seconds left in the game and the score being 109-108 in the Bulls’ favor, Dennis Schroder would complete a driving layup to give the Thunder a one-point lead.  That would force the Chicago team to call a timeout.  Out of the timeout, Justin Holiday would drill a huge three-pointer off of a Lauri Markkanen assist, giving the Bulls a 112-110 lead.  Four seconds out of a Thunder timeout, Russell Westbrook would drive the ball in the paint for a layup, tying the game up at 112 apiece.  But Markkanen respond as he made a driving layup with only four seconds left in the game to allow the home team to regain the lead.  Paul George would attempt a three-pointer after a Thunder timeout but would fail to convert as the Bulls hold off the Thunder, 114-112, bringing an end to their seven-game losing streak.

Zach LaVine finished the game with 25 points, 4 rebounds, 7 assists, and 2 steals but had a career-tying nine turnovers.  Russell Westbrook scored 24 points, grabbed 17 rebounds, dished off 13 assists, and committed a season-tying 4 steals.  Those stats would complete his triple-double (109th of his career; 5th of the season) but had a season-high 10 turnovers.

So…what’s next?

The Oklahoma City Thunder will host Donovan Mitchell (20.6 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 3.5 APG, 42.7 FG%, 29.2 3P%) and the Utah Jazz (13-13) on Monday at 8:00 p.m.  This meeting will mark the first of four matchups between these two teams this season.  The Thunder would win the regular-season series against the Jazz, 3-1, before losing to them in the first round of the playoffs, 2-4.

The Chicago Bulls will host Kyrie Irving (22.2 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 6.4 APG, 48.5 FG% 39.2 3P%) and the Boston Celtics (14-10) on Saturday at 8:00 p.m.  This will be the second time that these two teams will see each other this season as one more game lies ahead of them.  The first time they met up each other was on November 14 when the Celtics handed the Bulls a 111-82 blowout loss.  During that game, Jaylen Brown scored eighteen points, grabbed six rebounds, gave out three assists, and committed one steal while Shaquille Harrison had sixteen points, six rebounds, one assist, and four steals.

The Warriors knock off the Cavaliers, 129 to 105

The Warriors knock off the Cavaliers, 129 to 105

This would have been one of the most hyped matchups of the season but with LeBron James being gone, it’s just another game for the defending champions.  Tonight, the Golden State Warriors will visit the Quicken Loans Arena to battle the struggling Cleveland Cavaliers.  The Warriors are facing difficulties of their own, though.  They are currently trying to recover from their two only losing streaks this season; one being a four-game losing streak and another one being a recent two-game skid.

Even though they are still without Draymond Green, who is missing his ninth straight game due to a toe injury, the Warriors were still able to get past the Atlanta Hawks, all thanks to Stephen Curry, who outscored the Hawks in the first quarter by himself, 18-17.  This meeting between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers will mark the first of two games between these teams this season.  The Warriors swept the regular season series against the Cavaliers last season before sweeping them in the NBA Finals.

INACTIVES:

Golden State Warriors:

-DeMarcus Cousins (Achilles)
-Draymond Green (toe; 6.9 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 7.2 APG, 44.4 FG%, 22.2 3P%, 66.7 FT%)
-Damian Jones (pectoral; 5.4 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 1.2 APG, 71.6 FG%, 64.9 FT%)
-Damion Lee (G-League; 5.1 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 0.2 APG, 43.4 FG%, 41.4 3P%, 80.0 FT%)

Cleveland Cavaliers:

-Sam Dekker (ankle; 6.3 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 1.0 APG, 45.8 FG%, 38.5 3P%, 80.0 FT%)
-Kevin Love (toe; 19.0 PPG, 13.5 RPG, 3.5 APG, 32.3 FG%, 29.2 3P%, 81.8 FT%)
-David Nwaba (knee; 6.1 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 0.6 APG, 42.4 FG%, 22.7 3P%, 67.6 FT%)
-Ante Zizic (knee; 3.5 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 0.4 APG, 50.0 FG%, 62.5 FT%)
-J.R. Smith (personal; 6.7 PPG, 1.6 RPG, 1.9 APG, 34.2 FG%, 30.8 3P%, 80.0 FT%)

GAMETIME:

The game would be held somewhat close in the first half as the Cleveland Cavaliers shot forty-nine percent from the floor while the Golden State Warriors completed fifty-one percent of their shots.  Former Utah Jazz guard Rodney Hood scored fifteen points while hitting two three-pointers early in the first quarter.  Rookie Collin Sexton contributed with twelve points which held three three-pointers while Tristan Thompson chipped in five points, eight rebounds, and one assist.  Larry Nance played sixteen minutes off the bench as he had nine points, seven rebounds, two assists, one steal, and one block.

As for the Warriors, Stephen Curry got extremely hot as he chalked up twenty-five points while knocking down six three-pointers in the process.  He also had three defensive rebounds, four assists, and one steal while Kevin Durant earned ten points for himself.  Durant was also able to drill a three-pointer in the second quarter while grabbing five defensive rebounds, dishing off five assists, committing one steal, and blocking two shots.  Four-time All-Star Klay Thompson was kept to just six points on twenty-nine percent shooting while recording three defensive rebounds.  Jonas Jerebko played the most minutes off the bench but only had six points while the Cavaliers went into halftime with a 64 to 58 advantage.

The Warriors would hit the Cavaliers with a huge 71 to 43 run in the second half as they shot fifty-four percent from the field, holding the Ohio team to forty percent.  During that run, Curry continued to put up a shooting display as he had seventeen additional points, nine coming from beyond the arc and the other eight from the free-throw line.  He also had six defensive rebounds and three assists while Durant put up fifteen points with three three-pointers in the third period.  Thompson would make up for that tough first half he had as he scored ten points with two three-pointers in the fourth.  Jerebko played twelve minutes off the bench as he had only five points which included a three-pointer late in the third.

On the other end of the court, both Thompson and Sexton had nine points apiece while Tristan Thompson saw to it that he got eleven rebounds.  The second round pick in the 2015 draft Cedi Osman scored seven points while knocking down a three-pointer early in the third quarter.  George Hill would be held scoreless in the eleven minutes that he played.  Jordan Clarkson played the most minutes off the bench as he put up seven points but it wouldn’t matter as the Golden State Warriors defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers with a 129-105 final score.  Stephen Curry finished the game with forty-two points, nine rebounds, seven assists, and one steal while Collin Sexton had twenty-one points, two rebounds, and three assists.

 

The Cleveland Cavaliers will host Buddy Hield (18.4 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 2.6 APG, 47.5 FG%, 41.8 3P%) and the Sacramento Kings (12-11) on Friday at 7:30 p.m.  This will be the first of two times that these ball clubs will face each other this season.  Both teams tied the regular season series last season at one apiece.

The Golden State Warriors will visit Wisconsin to take on Giannis Antetokounmpo (27.6 PPG, 13.2 RPG, 6.0 APG, 57.8 FG%, 11.5 3P%) and the Milwaukee Bucks (15-7) on Friday at 9:30 p.m.  This game will be second and last one that the Bucks and Warriors will play against each other this season.  The last time they fought each other was on November 8 when the Milwaukee Bucks handed the Warriors a 134-111 blowout loss.  During that game, Eric Bledsoe scored twenty-six points, grabbed four rebounds, dished off six assists, and committed one steal while Klay Thompson finished with twenty-four points, three rebounds, three assists, one steal, and two blocks.

The Golden State Warriors ended their losing streak with a 125-97 win over the Portland Trail Blazers

The Golden State Warriors ended their losing streak with a 125-97 win over the Portland Trail Blazers

The two-time defending champions Golden State Warriors have been in a slump lately, trying to avoid a fifth straight loss.  This current losing streak is the longest losing streak in the Steve Kerr-era.  They will try to capture their first win since November 13 as they host the Portland Trail Blazers.  The Trail Blazers, on the other hand, are coming fresh off of a 143-100 blowout loss against the Milwaukee Bucks.

This matchup between the Warriors and the Trail Blazers will mark the first of four times that these two ball clubs will meet up during this season.  They have played each other a grand total of 235 times with the Warriors winning 111 games.  The Trail Blazers will go on to win 124 of those games.

INACTIVES:

Portland Trail Blazers:

Gary Trent (5.0 PPG, 1.5 RPG, 0.0 APG, 44.4 FG%, 66.7 3P%)
Anfernee Simons (2.2 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.2 APG, 33.3 FG%, 0.0 3P%, 25.0 FT%)
Golden State Warriors:

DeMarcus Cousins (Achilles)
Draymond Green (toe; 6.9 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 7.2 APG, 44.4 FG%, 22.2 3P%, 66.7 FT%)
Alfonzo McKinnie (foot; 6.3 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 0.5 APG, 51.3 FG%, 48.4 3P%, 53.8 FT%)
Stephen Curry (groin; 29.5 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 6.1 APG, 51.5 FG%, 49.2 3P%, 92.3 FT%)
Marcus Derrickson (G-League; 1.0 PPG, 0.5 RPG, 0.0 APG, 50.0 FG%)

GAMETIME:

The Golden State Warriors would have full control of the game in the first half as they fifty-two percent from the field, limiting the Portland Trail Blazers to thirty-nine percent.  The 2007-2008 Rookie of the Year Kevin Durant would get hot for nineteen points which included a three-pointer in the second period.  He also recorded four defensive rebounds, two assists, two steals, and three blocks.

Klay Thompson helped out with fourteen points while knocking down a three-pointer in the middle of the first quarter.  Former Dallas Mavericks point guard Quinn Cook nailed two three-pointers while jumping up for three defensive boards.  Kevon Looney played twelve minutes off of the bench but was kept to just two points.

On the other end of the court, three-time All-Star Damian Lillard earned ten points but shot only thirty-three percent from the field.  He did have two three-pointers Al-Farouq Aminu contributed with nine points and six rebounds.  Aminu was able to hit a three-pointer late in the second quarter while C.J. McCollum also had nine points.  McCollum also had a three-pointer.  Evan Turner played the most minutes off of the bench but only managed to get one free-throw as the Warriors headed into the locker room with a huge 59-44 advantage.

The Warriors went on the close things out in the second half as they went on a 66 to 53 run, shooting sixty-two percent from the field.  Thompson threw up seventeen more points which held three three-pointers in the third period.  Durant had thirteen points while shooting a high eighty-three percent from the field.  Nurkic earned fifteen points for the Oregon team but it wouldn’t matter as the Warriors easily come away with a 125-97 victory.  Kevin Durant finished the game with thirty-two points, eight rebounds, seven assists, two steals, and three blocks.  Damian Lillard settled for twenty-three points, along with two rebounds, eight assists, two steals, and one block.

So…what’s next?

The Portland Trail Blazers will stay in California as they visit the Staples Center to take on Tobias Harris (20.8 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 2.3 APG, 51.6 FG%, 43.4 3P%) and the Los Angeles Clippers (12-6) on Sunday at 9:00 p.m.  This game will mark the second of four meetings between these two ball clubs this season.  The last time they saw each other was on November 8 when the Trail Blazers escaped with a 116 to 105 win.  Damian Lillard finished with twenty-five points, four rebounds, four assists, one steal, and one block while Danilo Gallinari had twenty-points and five rebounds.  Lou Williams also had twenty-points, along with three rebounds and seven assists.

The Golden State Warriors will host Buddy Hield (18.7 PPG, 5.6 RPG, 2.7 APG, 47.8 FG%, 44.1 3P%) and the Sacramento Kings (10-8) on Saturday at 8:30 p.m.  This meeting will mark the first of four times that the Warriors and the Kings will match up with each other during this season.