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The Houston Rockets hand the Chicago Bulls a 117-94 loss

The Houston Rockets hand the Chicago Bulls a 117-94 loss

The Chicago Bulls haven’t been very impressive this season as they are sitting with a 3-6 record.  They are, however, coming fresh off of a 113-93 win they took over the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday.  The Bulls will hope to grab a second straight as they host the Houston Rockets tonight at the United Center.  It will be tough, though, as the Bulls won only one game at home this season, sitting with a 1-2 home record.

The Houston Rockets, on the other hand, are in the midst of proving their doubters wrong as they hope to grab a third consecutive victory tonight.  They are coming off of a 129-112 win over the struggling Golden State Warriors on Wednesday.  This matchup between the Bulls and the Rockets tonight will mark the first of two meetings this season.

A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY:

The Chicago Bulls and the Houston Rockets have battled each other a grand total of 138 times in the past as the Bulls won 68 games while the Rockets pulled out 70 victories.

INACTIVES:

Houston Rockets:

-Gerald Green (foot)
-Nene (abductor)
-Ryan Anderson (coach’s decision; 2.5 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 1.0 APG, 28.6 FG%, 20.0 3P%)
-Tyson Chandler (coach’s decision; 1.8 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 0.3 APG, 87.5 FG%)
-Thabo Sefolosha (coach’s decision; 1.9 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 1.4 APG, 27.8 FG%, 27.3 3P%)
-Gary Clark (G-League)
-Michael Frazier (G-League)
-Isaiah Hartenstein (G-League)

Chicago Bulls:

-Otto Porter (foot; 11.2 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.6 APG, 41.7 FG%, 40.0 3P%)
-Shaquille Harrison (coach’s decision; 2.0 PPG, 1.4 RPG, 0.4 APG, 30.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Denzel Valentine (coach’s decision; 3.0 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 25.0 FG%, 50.0 3P%)
-Cristiano Felicio
-Adam Mokoka (G-League)
-Max Strus (G-League)

GAMETIME:

The game would be held close in the first half as the Houston Rockets shot forty-two percent from the field while the Chicago Bulls shot forty percent.  The two-time scoring champion James Harden got hot for 20 points while knocking down 3 three-pointers in the process.  He also had five rebounds, 4 assists, and one steal while Danuel House contributed with 3 three-pointers and two points from the charity stripe.

Russell Westbrook was kept to just eight points but had three defensive rebounds and two assists while Clint Capela helped out with four points.  He also had nine rebounds and three blocks while P.J. Tucker had just one point.  Indiana-native Eric Gordon played the most minutes off the bench but only had a three-pointer in the second quarter.

As for the home team, Zach LaVine scored 11 points, which held a three-pointer in the before halftime.  Lauri Markkanen contributed with eight points but shot only twenty-eight percent from the field.  Wendell Carter had eight points, as well, along with eight rebounds and one block.  Coby White played fourteen minutes off the bench but only had three points while the Rockets went into the locker room with a tight 50-49 advantage.

The Texas team would take over in the second half as they went on a huge 67-45 run, shooting fifty percent from the field.  During that run, Harden earned 22 more points which included six three-pointers.  Westbrook made up for his scoring performance in the first half as he chalked up eighteen points while grabbing four rebounds.  Austin Rivers played the most minutes off the bench but only had a three-pointer.

On the other end of the court, both Markkanen and Carter had five points each while Tomas Satoransky earned six points.  White had seven points in the 12 minutes he played off the bench but it was the Rockets who came away with a 117-94 victory.  James Harden finished the game with 42 points, 10 rebounds, 9 assists, and 2 steals while Lauri Markkanen had 13 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 steals.  Both Carter and Thaddeus Young had 13 points each, as well.

So…what’s next?

The Houston Rockets will travel to Louisiana to battle Brandon Ingram (25.9 PPG, 7.1 RPG, 4.3 APG, 55.2 FG%, 48.6 3P%) and the New Orleans Pelicans (1-6) on Monday at 8:00 p.m.  This will mark the second of four matchups between these two teams this season.  The last time they saw each other was on October 26 when the Rockets walked away with a 126-123 win.  James Harden finished with 29 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and one steal while Ingram had 35 points, 15 rebounds, and 5 assists.

The Chicago Bulls will host R.J. Barrett (17.9 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 3.9 APG, 42.4 FG%, 36.7 3P%) and the New York Knicks (1-7) on Tuesday at 8:00 p.m.  This will be the second of four meetings between these two ball clubs this season.  October 28 was the last time they played each other as the Bulls fell to the Knicks, 105-98.  During that game, Bobby Portis scored 28 points, grabbed 11 rebounds, dished out 2 assists, and blocked 2 shots while Zach LaVine earned 21 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, one steal, and one block.

The Rockets skate away with a 126-123 win over the Pelicans

The Rockets skate away with a 126-123 win over the Pelicans

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Six years after their tenure in Oklahoma, James Harden and Russell Westbrook have reunited in Houston after Westbrook was traded to the Rockets.  Their first game together, which took place on Thursday against the Milwaukee Bucks, wasn’t a success as they fell, 117 to 111.  They will hope to grab a victory tonight as they host the New Orleans Pelicans at the Toyota Center.

The Pelicans, on the other hand, are trying to grab their first win of the season as they lost their first two games to the Toronto Raptors in the season opener, 130-122 in overtime, and the Dallas Mavericks, 123-116.

HISTORY:

The Houston Rockets and the New Orleans Pelicans have battled each other a grand total of 63 times as the Rockets pulled out 36 wins while the Pelicans were kept to 26 victories.

INACTIVES:

New Orleans Pelicans:

-Darius Miller (Achilles)
-Zion Williamson (knee)
-Zylan Cheatham (coach’s decision)
-Jaxson Hayes (coach’s decision)
-E’Twaun Moore (coach’s decision; 5.0 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 2.0 APG, 28.6 FG%, 33.3 3P%)
-Josh Gray
-Jrue Holiday (knee; 10.5 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 7.0 APG, 30.8 FG%, 11.1 3P%)

Houston Rockets:

-Michael Frazier (ankle)
-Gerald Green (foot)
-Nene (abductor)
-Ryan Anderson (coach’s decision)
-Gary Clark (coach’s decision)
-Chris Clemons (coach’s decision)
-Isaiah Hartenstein

GAMETIME:

The game would be very competitive as the Pelicans shot forty-eight percent from the field in the first half while the Rockets shot forty-six percent.  Brandon Ingram chalked up 18 points while hitting 3 three-pointers in the process.  He also collected six rebounds and two assists while Lonzo Ball helped out with 13 points on fifty-seven percent shooting.  He also had 3 three-pointers, along with two rebounds, six assists, and one steal.

Josh Hart had seven points which held a three-pointer in the second period while former Milwaukee Bucks’ guard J.J. Redick had two three-pointers in the second quarter.  Derrick Favors was kept to just two points but had three rebounds.  Kenrich Williams played the most minutes off of the bench but was held completely scoreless.

On the other end of the court, James Harden dropped 13 points on a poor twenty-eight percent shooting.  He had a three-pointer, along with one defensive rebound, four assists, and one steal while Clint Capela gave 11 points.  The 2016-2017 NBA MVP Russell Westbrook recorded 10 points to go along with five rebounds and seven assists.  Eric Gordon played 16 minutes off of the bench but only had four points as both teams went into halftime tied at 61 apiece.

The game would remain competitive in the second half as the Rockets shot forty-four percent from the field while the visiting team shot forty-three percent.  Westbrook scored 18 of the Houston Rockets’ 65 second-half points while knocking down a three-pointer in the process.  Harden contributed with 16 points and three rebounds while Gordon dropped nine points off of the bench.

As for the Lousiana ball club, Ingram and Hart combined for 33 of the Pelicans’ 62 second-half points while Ball was kept to just five points.  Williams was kept to just two points off of the bench but it wouldn’t matter as the Rockets escaped with a 126-123 victory, thanks to Westbrook’s two free-throws near the end of regulation.  James Harden finished the game with 29 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and one steal while Brandon Ingram settled for 35 points, a career-high 15 rebounds, as well as 5 assists.

So…what’s next?

The New Orleans Pelicans will host Stephen Curry (23.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 4.0 APG, 40.0 FG%, 18.2 3P%) and the Golden State Warriors (0-1) on Monday at 8:00 p.m.  The Houston Rockets will host Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (27.0 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 2.5 APG, 50.0 FG%, 45.5 3P%) and the Oklahoma City Thunder (0-2) on Monday at 8:00 p.m.

The Wizards would escape with a 97-85 victory over the Thunder

The Wizards would escape with a 97-85 victory over the Thunder

Still without one of their star players, John Wall, the Washington Wizards’ chances of making the playoffs are slim to none.  Last year, they finished the season 32-50, placing them 11th in the Eastern Conference.  The Wizards are currently trying to recover from a 108-100 loss they took in the hands of the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday, their first game of the season.  Going up against the Oklahoma City Thunder, they will hope to grab a win tonight.

The Thunder, on the other hand, have a new point guard in Chris Paul after receiving him from the Houston Rockets in a trade involving Russell Westbrook.  The Oklahoma ball club lost their first game of the season to the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, 100-95.  Both teams will try to grab their first victory tonight.

HISTORY:

The Washington Wizards and the Oklahoma City Thunder have battled each other a grand total of 147 times.  Out of those times, the Wizards defeated the Thunder 67 times while the Thunder pulled out 80 victories.

INACTIVES:

Washington Wizards:

-Troy Brown (calf)
-Ian Mahinmi (Achilles)
-Jordan McRae (finger; 11.0 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 3.0 APG, 44.4 FG%, 33.3 3P%)
-C.J. Miles (foot)
-Isaiah Thomas (thumb)
-John Wall (Achilles)
-Justin Robinson (coach’s decision; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG)

Oklahoma City Thunder:

-Andre Roberson (knee)
-Justin Patton (coach’s decision)
-Luguentz Dort (G-League)
-Devon Hall (G-League)

GAMETIME:

The game would be somewhat competitive in the first half as the Washington Wizards shot forty-four percent from the field while the Oklahoma City Thunder shot forty-two percent.  Former Los Angeles Lakers’ center Thomas Bryant scored 14 points on sixty percent shooting, knocking down two three-pointers in the process.  Rui Hachimura helped out with 10 points while grabbing two rebounds and giving out one assist.

Two-time All-Star Bradley Beal was kept to just six points while Ish Smith had two points.  Isaac Bonga was held to two points, as well, but had two rebounds and two assists to go along with it.  Davis Bertans played the most minutes off of the bench but was limited to just five points.

As for the home team, both Danilo Gallinari and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander put up 13 points each.  They both had a three-pointer each while Steven Adams recorded five points and nine rebounds.  Chris Paul was held to just two points but gave out three assists.  Dennis Schroder played 13 minutes off of the bench as he had seven points while the D.C. ball club went into halftime with a 52-46 advantage.

Both teams continued to battle it out in the second half as the Wizards shot thirty-five percent from the field while the Oklahoma team shot thirty-seven percent.  Beal added to his scoring total by dropping 11 more points, planting 3 three-pointers in the process.  Hachimura contributed with nine points Bertans gave eight points off of the bench.  As for the Thunder, Gilgeous-Alexander put up 15 more points but it wouldn’t be enough as the Wizards walked away with a 97-85 victory.

Thomas Bryant finished with 21 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, a career-high-tying 2 steals, and a career-high-tying 3 blocks.  Shai Gilgeous-Alexander earned a career-high 28 points, along with 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and 3 blocks.

So…what’s next?

The Washington Wizards travel to Texas to take on LaMarcus Aldridge (22.0 PPG, 8.0 RPG, 1.0 APG, 53.3 FG%, 100.0 3P%) and the San Antonio Spurs (1-0) on Saturday at 8:30 p.m.  The Oklahoma City Thunder will host Stephen Curry (23.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 4.0 APG, 40.0 FG%, 18.2 3P%) and the Golden State Warriors (0-1) Sunday at 3:30 p.m.

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 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 Utah Jazz survive Game 3 against the Oklahoma City Thunder, 115-102

The Utah Jazz survive Game 3 against the Oklahoma City Thunder, 115-102

Tonight will mark the third game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Utah Jazz in their playoff series.  The first game was on April 15 when the Thunder handed the Jazz a 116-108 loss.  During that game, Paul George scored thirty-six points, grabbed seven rebounds and committed one steal while Donovan Mitchell had twenty-seven points, ten rebounds, three assists, two steals and one block.  The Jazz would respond in Game 2 as they sneak off with a 102 to 95 victory.  Mitchell finished with twenty-eight points, six rebounds, two assists and one steal while Russell Westbrook settled for nineteen points, nine rebounds, thirteen assists and four steals.  Each team would look to take a 2-1 lead as they fight each other in Utah.

INACTIVES:

Oklahoma City Thunder:

Andre Roberson (knee; 5.0 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 1.2 APG, 53.7 FG%, 22.2 3P%)
Nick Collison (coach’s decision; 2.1 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.3 APG, 68.4 FG%)
Kyle Singler (1.9 PPG, 0.8 RPG, 0.2 APG, 33.3 FG%, 40.0 3P%)

Utah Jazz:

Thabo Sefolosha (knee; 8.2 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 0.9 APG, 49.2 FG%, 38.1 3P%)
Tony Bradley (0.9 PPG, 1.2 RPG, 0.1 APG, 27.3 FG%, 0.0 3P%)

GAMETIME:

The game will be competitive at the beginning as both teams shot fifty-three percent in the first half.  Ricky Rubio got hot for nineteen points which included a three-pointer near the end of the second quarter.  He also had seven rebounds, six assists and one steal while Joe Ingles helped out with eight points.  Derrick Favors and Donovan Mitchell both had seven points each while Rudy Gobert earned six points and six rebounds.  Former Cleveland Cavaliers’ player Jae Crowder played thirteen minutes off of the bench but was only kept to four points.

On the other end of the court, Russell Westbrook scored ten points while recording four defensive rebounds, six assists and one steal.  Both Paul George and Carmelo Anthony had nine points each which also included one three-pointer each.  Anthony had two defensive rebounds to add while Steven Adams contributed with six points.  Patrick Patterson played the most minutes off of the bench but only had six points while the Utah Jazz went into halftime with a 58 to 53 advantage.

The Jazz would close things out in the second half with a 57 to 49 run, shooting fifty-one percent from the field.  Mitchell would drop fifteen points which included three three-pointers.  He also had six rebounds, two assists, two steals and one block while Ingles continued to help out with thirteen points.  Ingles also had three three-pointers while Gobert scored twelve points.  Crowder played the most minutes off of the bench but was held scoreless.

As for the Oklahoma team, Paul George saw to it that he got fourteen points which held two three-pointers.  Anthony would score only five points that contained a three-pointer in the third quarter.  Jerami Grant also had five points off of the bench along with two defensive rebounds.  Westbrook was kept to just a three-pointer and a free-throw but did manage to get ahold of seven rebounds while dishing out three assists.  Raymond Felton played sixteen minutes off of the bench as he earned eight points but it was the Utah Jazz who defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder with a 115-102 score, making the series 2-1.  Ricky Rubio finished the game with twenty-six points, eleven rebounds, ten assists, two steals and one block while Paul George had twenty-three points, two rebounds, three assists and two steals.

The Oklahoma City Thunder breeze past the Golden State Warriors, 108-91

The Oklahoma City Thunder breeze past the Golden State Warriors, 108-91

The Oklahoma City Thunder and the Golden State Warriors are not really what you would call “rival” teams but they do have some hard feelings towards each other.  What really ignited those feelings is when superstar Kevin Durant decided to ditch Russell Westbrook and the Thunder only to join the Warriors just one month after losing to them in the Western Conference Finals.  These two teams have met up a total of 260 times with the Thunder winning 143 games and the Warriors winning 117 of them.  Tonight’s game in Oklahoma would mark the first matchup of the season.

INACTIVES:

Golden State Warriors:

Jordan Bell (3.2 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 0.9 APG, 70.4 FG%)
Quinn Cook (G-League; 1.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 100.0 FG%)
Damian Jones (G-League)
Chris Boucher (G-League)

Oklahoma City Thunder:

Nick Collison (coach’s decision; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 1.0 APG)
Kyle Singler (2.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 100.0 FG%)
Daniel Hamilton (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 0.0 FG%)
PJ Dozier (G-League)

GAMETIME:

The Oklahoma City Thunder opened things up well as they shot fifty-two percent from the field in the first half, limiting the defending champions to forty-two percent.  The Thunder’s Big Three all scored double digits in the first half as Russell Westbrook went off for 20 points on fifty-seven percent shooting.  He was able to knock down a three-pointer late in the second period as grabbing seven rebounds and dishing off six assists.  Former Knicks’ forward Carmelo Anthony had 16 points which included two three-pointers.  Paul George recorded 14 points in the midst of grabbing one offensive rebound and three defensive rebounds.  Steven Adams had eight rebounds in the half to put with his eight points.  Jerami Grant played eight minutes off of the bench but only had two points.

As for the Warriors, Kevin Durant scored 14 points while hitting two three-pointers in the first quarter against his former team.  He also collected four defensive rebounds but had two turnovers.  Stephen Curry ended up with thirteen points while earning three rebounds and four assists.  Klay Thompson had one three-pointer in the opening quarter while Draymond Green gave out four assists.  Andre Iguodala played the most minutes off of the bench but only had two points as the Thunder went into halftime with a huge 65 to 48 advantage.

Curry dropped 11 points in the second half which would include one three-pointer late in the third period.  Former Cavaliers’ forward Omri Casspi had nine points to put with his one offensive rebound and four defensive ones.  Durant scored seven points on forty percent shooting while Green had two points and three defensive rebounds.  Nick Young played the most minutes off of the bench but was held completely scoreless.

The Thunder finished things off in the last half as Westbrook posted up 14 points on thirty-nine percent shooting from the field.  He also had three rebounds, three assists, and four steals while George collected two three-pointers to put with his seven rebounds.  Anthony shot only thirty-three percent from the field as he settled for six points and four defensive rebounds.  Josh Huestis played 10 minutes off of the bench but was kept to just a free-throw as the Thunder easily hand the Warriors a 108 to 91 loss.  Russell Westbrook finished with a season-high 34 points, 10 rebounds, 9 assists, and 4 steals.  Stephen Curry had 24 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists, and one steal.

So…what’s next?

The Golden State Warriors will host Lauri Markkanen (15.4 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 1.6 APG) and the Chicago Bulls (3-12) for the first time this season on Friday at 10:30 p.m.  These two teams have met up a total of 159 times with the Bulls winning 87 games and the Warriors winning 72 of them.  The Oklahoma City Thunder will host Tobias Harris (18.7 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 1.8 APG) and the Detroit Pistons (11-6) for the first time this season on Friday at 8:00 p.m.  The Pistons and the Thunder have met up a total of 136 times in the past as the Pistons won 66 games while the Thunder ended up winning 70 of the games.

The Thunder pull away from the Clippers with a 120 to 111 victory

The Thunder pull away from the Clippers with a 120 to 111 victory

Things have not gone as planned for the Big Three in Oklahoma City as the Thunder are sitting with a 4-7 record to start the season.  With Kevin Durant gone, Russell Westbrook was more than happy when Paul George and Carmelo Anthony joined him during the offseason but things could be better…obviously.  They are currently looking to snap a four-game losing streak as they host the 5-5 Los Angeles Clippers, who are hoping to avoid a fourth straight loss.  After a meeting held by the Thunder behind closed doors, they looked to turn things around before getting deep into the season.

INACTIVES:

Los Angeles Clippers:

Danilo Gallinari (buttocks; 12.8 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 3.0 APG, 35.5 FG%, 26.0 3P%)
Brice Johnson (coach’s decision; 3.0 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 0.3 APG, 71.4 FG%)
Milos Teodosic (foot; 5.5 PPG, 0.5 RPG, 4.0 APG, 33.3 FG%, 42.9 3P%)
Jamil Wilson (G-League)
Patrick Beverley (knee; 12.5 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 3.0 APG, 40.5 FG%, 39.6 3P%)

Oklahoma City Thunder:

Nick Collison (coach’s decision; 0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 1.0 APG, 53.3 FG%, 20.8 3P%)
Terrance Ferguson (coach’s decision; 0.5 PPG, 0.3 RPG, 0.0 APG, 25.5 FG, 0.0 3P%)
Kyle Singler (coach’s decision)
Steven Adams (calf; 12.3 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 1.2 APG, 65.2 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
Daniel Hamilton (G-League)
P.J. Dozier (G-League)

GAMETIME:

Paul George lit the floor up with a season-high 42 points while collecting nine rebounds and dishing off seven assists.  He knocked down four three-pointers in the process while Russell Westbrook had 22 points to put along with his three rebounds and eight assists.  Carmelo Anthony scored 14 points which included a three-pointer in the third quarter.  Jerami Grant played the most minutes off of the bench as he chalked up seven points while Andre Roberson had a season-high 11 rebounds.

Lou Williams played the most minutes off of the bench as he scored a season-high 35 points for the visiting team which would include a season-high six three-pointers.  Both Blake Griffin and the coach’s son, Austin Rivers, would score 17 points each as Griffin collected six defensive rebounds.  Former Miami Heat player Willie Reed came off of the bench to chalk up a season-high 15 points but it was the home team who pulled away with a 120-111 win.

So…what’s next?

The Clippers will head to Louisiana today to take on DeMarcus Cousins (28.2 PPG) and the New Orleans Pelicans (6-6).  These two teams have met a total of 50 times with the Clippers winning 24 of the games and the Pelicans winning 26 of them.  The Thunder will host Harrison Barnes (18.4 PPG) and the Dallas Mavericks (2-10) on Sunday.  These two teams met up a total of 173 times with the Thunder/Supersonics winning 93 of the matchups while the Mavericks won 80 of them.

The Indiana Pacers deal the Sacramento Kings a 101 to 83 loss

The Indiana Pacers deal the Sacramento Kings a 101 to 83 loss

The Sacramento Kings were hoping to break the three-game losing streak as they took on the Indiana Pacers in Indianapolis.  The Pacers, on the other hand, are trying to bounce back from a 114 to 96 loss in the hands of the Oklahoma City Thunder.  The Sacramento Kings would play without Vince Carter (coach’s decision) last night, along with Garrett Temple (rest), Harry Giles (knee), JaKarr Sampson, and Jack Cooley.  The Pacers would be without Edmond Sumner (knee), Myles Turner (neck), and Glenn Robinson III (ankle).

The Pacers would open the game up well as they shot forty-seven percent from the field, limiting the Kings to thirty percent. Thaddeus Young would score six points off of fifty percent shooting from the field. Domantas Sabonis would also put up six points while pulling down nine rebounds and dishing off two assists. Former Thunder’s guard Victor Oladipo played for the entire quarter but was only held to five points while Darren Collison was limited to just three free-throws.

As for the Kings, Bogdan Bogdanovic played for eleven minutes but was held to only four points but he did manage to get ahold of two defensive rebounds. He shot fifty percent while De’Aaron Fox would come off the bench to also score four points off of fifty percent shooting. Kosta Koufos came off the bench to chalk up three and two defensive rebounds as the Indiana Pacers went into the second quarter with an early 24-13 advantage.

The home team continued to impress as they go on a large 31-17 run in the second quarter, shooting a high fifty-seven percent from the field while holding the Sacramento team to thirty-five percent. Bojan Bogdanovic would heat up for ten points while shooting sixty-seven percent from the field. Young ended up with five points in the quarter with three coming from beyond the arc. Oladipo continued to contribute with five points, as well, along with two assists. Sabonis would shoot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field to give himself four points to go along with the three rebounds and three assists he collected.

On the other end of the floor, former Spurs guard George Hill would chalk up four points while collecting one defensive rebound.  Bogdanovic would end up connecting for a three-pointer while giving out one assist.  Zach Randolph played for eight minutes only to be held to two points and two turnovers.  Willie Cauley-Stein jumped up to grab one offensive rebound and one defensive rebound to go along with the two free-throws that he made.  The Kings did not give up but it was still the Indiana Pacers who enter halftime with a huge 55 to 30 lead.

The California team would look to respond in the third period as they shot forty-one percent from the field while holding the Indiana Pacers to a very low seventeen percent.  Randolph would make up for his performance last quarter as he posts up eight points while collecting one offensive rebound and two defensive rebounds.  Hill contributed with four points as he shot only thirty-three percent from the field.  He did manage to get ahold of two defensive rebounds in the eleven minutes that he played.  Cauley-Stein was held to just two points but would do some work on the boards as he grabbed one offensive rebound and four defensive rebounds.

Thaddeus Young would try to help the Pacers out as he scored four points with three coming from behind the arc and the other one from the free-throw line.  He also gobbled up two defensive rebounds while Maryland-native Victor Oladipo knocked down four free-throws at the line to go along with his two defensive rebounds.  Domantas Sabonis and bench player Lance Stephenson would each score two points and pull down two defensive rebounds as the Indiana team still had an advantage at the end of the third, 69-48.

The Kings would take the last attempt at a comeback as they shot fifty-eight percent from the field while keeping the Pacers at only forty-two percent.  Fox played the entire quarter as he got hot for twelve points, shooting seventy-five percent from the field.  He also managed to record one offensive rebound, two defensive rebounds, four assists, and one steal.  Skal Labissiere also played the entire quarter but he was held to only six points and two defensive rebounds.  Rookie point guard Frank Mason was also held to just six points while Justin Jackson would score five points with three coming from beyond the arc.

The Pacers would shut down the Kings’ attempt to come back as they finished things off in the last twelve minutes.  Cory Joseph came off of the bench to record eleven points as he shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.  He would earn nine of those points from behind the three-point line as former 76ers’ forward Alex Poythress collected two three-pointers.   Bojan Bogdanovic scored five points with three coming from beyond the arc and the other two from the charity stripe.  T.J. Leaf played for the entire quarter as he recorded four points, two offensive rebounds, and two assists.  Stephenson came off of the bench to chalk up two points, three rebounds, and four assists as the Indiana Pacers easily pull away with a 101 to 83 win over the Sacramento Kings.  Bojan Bogdanovic finished the game with seventeen points, three rebounds, and four assists.  De’Aaron Fox would finish with eighteen points, four rebounds, five assists, and one steal.

The Celtics break an 11-game losing streak to the Spurs as they pull out a 108 to 94 win

The Celtics break an 11-game losing streak to the Spurs as they pull out a 108 to 94 win

The San Antonio Spurs and the Boston Celtics would meet for the first time this season, which marked the first of two games that these teams would play against each other.  The Celtics have lost the last eleven matchups to the Spurs but things would be different as the Boston team will have Kyrie Irving.  The Spurs were without Darrun Hilliard, Joffrey Lauvergne (ankle), Kawhi Leonard (quadriceps), Tony Parker (quadriceps), Matt Costello (coach’s decision), and Manu Ginobili (rest).  The Celtics would be without Kadeem Allen, Jabari Bird, and Marcus Morris (knee).  The Celtics looked to extend their winning streak to five as they hosted the Spurs at the TD Garden.

The Boston Celtics would start the game off impressively as they shot fifty percent from the field in the first quarter as the Spurs shot forty-eight percent.  Jaylen Brown would chalk up nine points while shooting sixty percent from the field.  He also gobbled up three defensive rebounds and dished off one assist.  Kyrie Irving also scored nine points in the eleven minutes that he played, hitting a three-pointer in the process.  He dished off two assists, as well, while Al Horford recorded four defensive records and three assists to go along with the six points he put up.

On the other end of the court, Texas-native LaMarcus Aldridge scored nine points in the eleven minutes that he played.  He also pulled down two defensive rebounds as Rudy Gay came off of the bench to chalk up four points with two of them coming from the free-throw line.  Pau Gasol was limited to just a three-pointer as well as Danny Green.  Brandon Paul would come off of the bench to knock down a three-pointer and grab two defensive rebounds but it was the Celtics who ended the first quarter with a 30 to 26 lead.

The Celtics would continue to own the show as they shot forty-eight percent from the field in the second quarter, holding the visiting team to thirty-eight percent.  Former Cavaliers’ point guard Kyrie Irving would continue to impress as he drops seven more points while shooting seventy-five percent from the field.  He also managed to grab one defensive rebound and dish off three assists as Marcus Smart collected six points and two defensive rebounds.  Horford and Jayson Tatum would earn three defensive rebounds while rookie Daniel Theis recorded three offensive rebounds.

As for the Texas team, Bryn Forbes came off of the bench to drop two three-pointers while collecting two defensive rebounds.  Gay only scored five points while Danny Green played ten minutes and was held to just a three-pointer.  Patty Mills came off of the bench to put in a three-pointer while Aldridge scored two points and grabbed two offensive rebounds.  Kyle Anderson was held scoreless in the seven minutes he played but he would collect two offensive rebounds as the Celtics headed into halftime with a 54-49 advantage.

The home team would go on a 26 to 18 run in the third period as they shot forty-three percent from the field while the San Antonio team shot thirty-three percent.  Kyrie Irving would continue to contribute as he chalks up eight more points with six coming from behind the arc.  Brown would play for the entire quarter as he put up seven points, three coming from beyond the arc and two coming from the charity stripe.  Aron Baynes ended up with four points in the period as Al Horford collected two points, two offensive rebounds, and three defensive rebounds.

On the other end of the floor, Paul collected six points on sixty-seven percent shooting from the field with three of those points coming from beyond the arc.  Gay would put up five points while knocking down a three-pointer in the process as Gasol would be limited to just three points.  Gasol did, however, grab three defensive rebounds while Dejounte Murray and Patty Mills were held to two points each.  Anderson was kept scoreless as he pulled down two defensive rebounds but it was still the Massachusetts team that went into the fourth quarter with a huge 80 to 67 lead.

The Boston Celtics would close things out in the last period as they shot fifty percent from the field while the San Antonio Spurs shot forty-eight percent.  Jayson Tatum would connect for two three-pointers while he grabbed down two defensive rebounds.  Horford ended up with four points while Terry Rozier got hot for ten points, earning six of them from beyond the arc.  Marcus Smart was held scoreless but did manage to dish off five assists.

Brandon Paul would continue to contribute to the Spurs scoring as he puts nine additional points while shooting a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.  He took three of those points from beyond the arc and two from the free-throw line.  Kyle Anderson would make up for last quarter as he posts up five points including one three-pointer.  Pau Gasol would be limited to three points but would grab two offensive rebounds and one defensive rebound.  Davis Bertans came off the bench to earn three points, two rebounds, and three assists but it was the Boston Celtics who easily pull out a 108 to 94 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.  Kyrie Irving would finish the game with twenty-four points, two rebounds, six assists, and three steals.  Brandon Paul finished with eighteen points, five rebounds, one assist, and one steal.