Tag: russell

The Houston Rockets grab a 119-109 victory over the defending champions, Toronto Raptors

The Houston Rockets grab a 119-109 victory over the defending champions, Toronto Raptors

Friday, December 6, 2019

The Toronto Raptors recently saw their seven-game win streak come to an end as they fell to the Miami Heat on Tuesday, 121-110, in overtime.  They will look to start up another streak as they host the Houston Rockets at the Scotiabank Arena tonight.  The Rockets, on the other hand, are coming fresh off a 135-133 loss they took in the hands of the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday in double overtime.

A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY:

The Raptors and the Rockets have met up a grand total of 47 times in the past as the Raptors won 20 games while the Rockets went on to win 27 of the matchups.

INACTIVES:

Houston Rockets:

-Eric Gordon (knee; 10.9 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 0.8 APG, 30.9 FG%, 28.4 3P%)
-Gerald Green (foot)
-NeNe (abductor)
-Tyson Chandler (coach’s decision; 1.7 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 0.3 APG, 76.5 FG%)
-Gary Clark (coach’s decision; 3.0 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 0.7 APG, 36.4 FG%, 27.8 3P%)
-Isaiah Hartenstein (coach’s decision; 4.4 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 0.6 APG, 73.3 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Michael Frazier (G-League)

Toronto Raptors:

-Stanley Johnson (groin; 1.4 PPG, 1.4 RPG, 0.0 APG, 33.3 FG%, 25.0 3P%)
-Patrick McCaw (knee; 4.0 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 1.5 APG, 60.0 FG%, 33.3 3P%)
-Matt Thomas (finger; 4.8 PPG, 1.1 RPG, 0.3 APG, 54.1 FG%, 53.8 3P%)
-Oshae Brissett (coach’s decision; 0.8 PPG, 0.3 RPG, 0.3 APG, 33.3 FG%, 100.0 3P%)
-Dewan Hernandez (coach’s decision; 1.3 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 0.0 APG, 20.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Malcolm Miller (coach’s decision; 2.3 PPG, 0.6 RPG, 0.5 APG, 54.5 FG%, 50.0 3P%)
-Shamorie Ponds (2.0 PPG, 0.5 RPG, 1.0 APG, 50.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)

GAMETIME:

The Houston Rockets would have a slight advantage in the first half as they shot forty-six percent from the field, keeping the Toronto Raptors to forty-two percent.  Ben McLemore scored 14 points while knocking down four three-pointers in the process.  P.J. Tucker helped out with 11 points which included 3 three-pointers.  He also had seven rebounds and two assists.

Russell Westbrook had nine points on just thirty-three percent shooting.  He did, however, record four rebounds and six assists while James Harden was held to just six points.  Danuel House played the most minutes off the bench as he chalked up sixteen points.

On the other end of the court, Pascal Siakam, who is averaging 25 points per game this season, got hot for eighteen points.  He had two three-pointers in the first period while Fred VanVleet contributed with nine points.  VanVleet also had two three-pointers while recording three rebounds, five assists, one steal, and a block.

Kyle Lowry had eight points which also held two three-pointers.  OG Anunoby earned himself five points while Marc Gasol was kept scoreless.  Norman Powell played ten minutes off the bench as he had six points while the Rockets went into halftime with a 63-55 lead.

The defending champions attempted to make a comeback in the second half as they shot forty-three percent from the field, keeping the Texas ball club to thirty-four percent shooting.  Kyle Lowry had eleven points as he shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.  He was able to bury a trey in the third quarter while grabbing three rebounds and dishing off four assists.

VanVleet also had eleven points, knocking down a shot from beyond the arc, as well.  Siakam helped out with six points while Gasol scored five points.  Powell played the most minutes off the bench as he earned himself eight points.

As for the Rockets, Harden and Westbrook combined for 27 points while Harden had three-pointers.  He also recorded five rebounds, two steals, and a block while Westbrook had nine rebounds, five assists, and a steal.  McLemore chalked up 14 points, earning twelve of them from beyond the arc and the other two from the free-throw line.

Former Los Angeles Clippers’ guard Austin Rivers played 18 minutes off the bench but only had six points but the Rockets were still able to pull away with a 119 to 109 victory.  Ben McLemore finished the game with a season-high 28 points, along with 2 rebounds, a season-high-tying 3 assists, and a steal while Pascal Siakam had 24 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, a season-high-tying 2 steals, and one block.

So…what’s next?

The Houston Rockets will host Devin Booker (24.1 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 6.2 APG, 50.4 FG%, 40.7 3P%) and the Phoenix Suns (9-11) on Saturday at 8:00 p.m.  This will mark the first of four matchups between these two ball clubs this season.

The Toronto Raptors will head to Pennsylvania to take on Joel Embiid (22.4 PPG, 12.2 RPG, 2.9 APG, 45.4 FG%, 31.3 3P%) and the Philadephia 76ers (15-6) on Sunday at 6:00 p.m.  This will be the second of four times that they battle each other this season.  November 25 was the last time they met up as the Raptors won that game, 101-96.  Pascal Siakam finished that game with 25 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, one steal, and two blocks while Josh Richardson had 25 points, 6 rebounds, one assist, and a block.

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 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 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.

The Timberwolves walk away from the Heat with a 125 to 122 overtime win

The Timberwolves walk away from the Heat with a 125 to 122 overtime win

Last night’s matchup between the Miami Heat and the Minnesota Timberwolves would mark the first of two games that these teams will play against each other.  The Heat was trying to avoid a third straight loss as they try to recover from the loss they took in the hands of the Boston Celtics.  The Minnesota team, on the other hand, are trying to get a winning streak going as they come fresh off a win against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The Timberwolves were without Cole Aldrich (coach’s decision) for this game, along with Aaron Brooks (coach’s decision), Marcus Georges-Hunt (coach’s decision), Anthony Brown, and Justin Patton (toe).  The Heat would play without Udonis Haslem (coach’s decision), Jordan Mickey (coach’s decision), A.J. Hammons, Matt Williams, Derrick Walton, Rodney McGruder (leg), and Hassan Whiteside (knee).  Both teams would try to battle hard as the Heat hosted the Timberwolves at the American Airlines Arena.

The Miami Heat would end up shooting fifty-eight from the field in the first quarter while holding the Timberwolves to forty-one percent. Goran Dragic heated up for ten points while shooting a perfect one-hundred percent from the field. He also gobbled up two defensive rebounds as former Thunder guard Dion Waiters scored six points to go along with the two defensive rebounds and one assist that he recorded.

Josh Richardson was limited to just forty percent shooting from the field as he earned five points with three coming from beyond the arc. Bam Adebayo only dropped three points but he did manage to grab three offensive rebounds and one rebound. James Johnson was held to just two free-throws but would collect five defensive rebounds.

As for the Minnesota team, Karl-Anthony Towns chalked up seven points which would include one three-pointer. He also pulled down one offensive rebound and two defensive rebounds as he shot seventy-five percent from the field. Jeff Teague played for ten minutes in the quarter as he scored seven points, collecting three of them from behind the arc. He would also record two defensive rebounds and two assists while Nemanja Bjelica came off of the bench to knock down a three-pointer. Andrew Wiggins was held to two points in the twelve minutes that he played as the Heat walked into the second quarter with a 32-23 advantage.

The Timberwolves would have something to say about that in the second quarter as they shot sixty-four percent from the field while the Florida team shot fifty-nine percent. Wiggins would make up for last quarter as he starts to warm up for seven points while shooting a perfect one-hundred percent from the field. He ended up knocking down a three-pointer in the process while Towns also shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.

Towns collected five points in the eight minutes that he played while pulling down one offensive and two defensive rebounds. Jimmy Butler played for seven minutes as he chalked up five points along with one rebound and one assist. Teague was held to just two points but did manage to get off three assists.

On the other end of the court, Kelly Olynyk would come off of the bench to drop nine points which included one three-pointer. He also was able to pull down three defensive rebounds and dish off two assists. Dragic shot sixty-seven percent from the field but was only held to six points, three from beyond the arc and one from the free-throw line.

Justise Winslow shot a perfect one-hundred from the field as he scores six points while collecting two defensive rebounds. Dion Waiters ended up shooting fifty percent from the field but was held to only four points. Adebayo would settle for two points and three offensive rebounds as the Miami Heat went into halftime with a close 62-60 lead.

During the third quarter, the Heat ended up shooting forty-four percent from the field as the Timberwolves were held to twenty-nine percent.  Bam Adebayo shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field as he scored seven points and collected two rebounds.  Okaro White would come off of the bench to put up five points as he shot one-hundred percent from the field.  Three of those points came from beyond the arc as Tyler Johnson was limited to four points, two coming from the charity stripe.

On the other end of the court, Taj Gibson warmed up with seven points while shooting a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.  He also collected two defensive rebounds while Karl-Anthony Towns chalked up five points, three of which came from beyond the arc and the other two from the free-throw line.  Andrew Wiggins shot only twenty percent while collecting four points and four rebounds but it was the home team who ended the third with an 82-79 lead.

The last quarter would be held closely as the Miami Heat shot forty-seven percent from the field as the Minnesota Timberwolves shot forty-one percent.  Dion Waiters would continue to impress as he posts up fourteen points while shooting seventy-one percent from the field.  Kelly Olynyk ended up shooting a perfect one-hundred percent from the field, earning nine points in return.  He connected for a three-pointer in the process of grabbing one defensive rebound.  Winslow would gather up two defensive rebounds and two points while Adebayo took a free-throw and three rebounds.

As for the Minnesota team, Jamal Crawford came off of the bench to drop eight points, earning three of them from behind the three-point line.  Jeff Teague chalked up seven points with three of them coming from beyond the arc and the other two from the free-throw line.  Wiggins collected six points on fifty percent shooting from the field while Butler would be held to just four free-throws.  Towns was held scoreless but he did manage to gobble up one offensive rebound and three defensive rebounds.

With only thirty seconds left in the game, the score would be 110 to 106 in the Timberwolves’ favor.  Dion Waiters would go to the line off of a foul by Jimmy Butler and nail two free-throws to make the score 110 to 108.  With three seconds left in the game, Waiters would make a driving layup to tie the game up at 110, forcing overtime.

The overtime period would be held closely as the Timberwolves shot fifty-seven percent while the Heat shot fifty percent.  Waiters ended up shooting only forty-three percent from the field but was able to score seven points in return.  He committed one steal while Olynyk knocked down one three-pointer.  Goran Dragic was held scoreless but did pull down two rebounds.

The Timberwolves would finish things off in overtime, though, as Teague recorded seven points, three coming from beyond the arc and two from the free-throw line.  Wiggins would be held to just three free-throws while Towns knocked down one three-pointer.  Butler was limited to just two points as the Minnesota team pull away with a 125 to 122 win.  Jeff Teague finished the game with twenty-three points, five rebounds, eleven assists, and six steals (tying his career-high).  Dion Waiter would finish with thirty-three points (tying his career-high), five rebounds, four assists, and three steals.

The Timberwolves slip away with a 119 to 116 win over the Thunder

The Timberwolves slip away with a 119 to 116 win over the Thunder

The last time that these two teams met up was on October 22 when the Minnesota Timberwolves pulled out a 115-113 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder off of a game-winning three-pointer by Andrew Wiggins.  In that game, both Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns finished with twenty-seven points but Wiggins also ended with seven rebounds and four assists while Towns had twelve rebounds and one assist.  Russell Westbrook would finish with thirty-one points, five rebounds, and ten assists.  The Thunder would seek revenge last night as they visited the Target Center to take on the T-Wolves.

During the first quarter of the game, the Thunder shot fifty-five percent from the field while limiting the Wolves to forty-four percent.  Paul George would heat up for twelve points as he shot eighty percent from the field.  He earned six of those points from beyond the arc while gobbling up one defensive rebound.  Steven Adams would contribute with six points as he shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.  Both Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony would be held to two points each as Westbrook recorded one defensive rebound and three assists.

As for the Minnesota team, former Chicago Bulls’ forward Taj Gibson would chalk up six points while pulling down one defensive rebound and one offensive rebound.  Towns shot only thirty-eight percent from the field as he recorded six points to go along with the three rebounds he collected.  Another former Bulls player, Jimmy Butler, only scored six points in the eleven minutes that he played as Wiggins scored five points with three of them coming from behind the arc.  Jeff Teague would dish off four assists and pull down two rebounds but it was the Thunder who ended the first quarter with a 33 to 26 lead.

The Timberwolves would respond in the second quarter as they go on a 33 to 26 run, shooting fifty-three percent from the field while holding the Oklahoma team to forty-eight percent.  Karl-Anthony Towns ended up putting up nine points in the sixty-seven percent that he shot from the field.  He also gobbled down four defensive rebounds while Teague would score points, as well, earning three of them from beyond the arc and two from the free-throw line.  Butler recorded five points and two assists while Jamal Crawford came off of the bench to contribute with five points, as well, knocking down a three-pointer in the process.

On the other end of the court, Anthony got hot for eleven points while shooting seventy-one percent from the field.  He knocked down a three-pointer in the process while George was held to one three-pointer and two free-throws.  Westbrook only shot thirty-three percent from the field as he scored four points, pulled down four rebounds, and gave out three assists.  Jerami Grant would come off the bench only to be held to two points in the nine minutes that he played as both teams headed to the locker rooms with a tied game, 59 apiece.

The third period of the game would be held closely as the Thunder shot fifty-five percent from the field and the Wolves shot fifty percent from the field.  Towns would heat up for eleven more points while grabbing one offensive rebound and two defensive rebounds.  Gibson also contributed as he recorded six points along with three offensive rebounds and one defensive rebound.  Jeff Teague scored six points with three coming from behind the three-point line while Wiggins was limited to just one three-pointer in the time that he played.  Butler would be held to just one free-throw as he dished off two assists.

As for the Thunder, New Zealand-native Steven Adams ended up with ten points as he shot a perfect one-hundred percent from the field.  Russell Westbrook would chalk up seven points to go along with the two defensive rebounds and two assists that he recorded.  Paul George shot only forty-three percent from the field but did manage to collect six points, two rebounds, and three assists.  Anthony dropped four points while grabbing two defensive rebounds as the Minnesota Timberwolves close the third quarter with a slight 90-89 lead.

During the fourth quarter, the Timberwolves ended up shooting fifty percent from the field while the Thunder were held to forty-one percent.  Jimmy Butler would get hot for thirteen points while shooting eighty percent from the field.  He ended up grabbing two offensive rebounds and two defensive rebounds while dishing off two assists.  Karl-Anthony Towns played for the entire quarter as he scored seven points, knocking down a three-pointer in the process.  He also managed to gobble up four offensive rebounds and five defensive rebounds while Wiggins would be held to just a three-pointer.

On the other end of the court, Westbrook would add fourteen more points to his scoring total as he shot sixty-three percent from the field.  He earned three of those points from beyond the arc while Carmelo Anthony dropped six points in the ten minutes that he played.  Raymond Felton would come off of the bench to post up four points as Paul George was held scoreless in the eight minutes that he played.  Adams managed to collect four rebounds as the Minnesota Timberwolves were able to hold on for a 119 to 116 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder, taking a 2-0 lead in the season series.  Karl-Anthony Towns would finish the game with thirty-three points and nineteen rebounds.  Russell Westbrook finished with twenty-seven points, eight rebounds, and nine assists.