Warriors make it to 6 finals in 8 years, Celtics outclass Heat
(Basketball news) Golden State Warriors cruised past Luka Doncic’s Mavericks as they won game 5 by 120-110, after this win they won the Western Conference for the 6th time in 8 years. For the Warriors, Thompson shimmied his way to 32 points as Andrew Wiggins added 18 points and 10 rebounds, Green scored 17 points and Curry had 15 points and nine assists as he was named the MVP of the series. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic overcame a slow start to score 28 points for them as Spencer Dinwiddie added 26 points. Ultimately it wasn’t enough as Steph and co were too strong for them. With this result they head to NBA finals as they look to avenge their disappointing loss in the final against the Toronto Raptors in 2019.
''It's hard to put into words really,'' Thompson said. ''This time last year, I was just starting to jog again and get up and down the court. Now to be feeling like myself, feeling explosive, feeling sure in my movements, I'm just grateful.''
''You could see how much was missing the last couple of years,'' Draymond Green said. ''We're lucky to have the Klay Thompson we know back because we know how good he is.''
''For our team, our guys, especially the core group, to be part of that six times in eight years, I don't even know what to say,'' coach Steve Kerr said. ''It just takes an enormous amount of skill and determination and work.''
''I'm satisfied with `Game 6 Klay.' I don't need another nickname,'' Thompson said with a smile. ''It's nice not having to bring him out yet.''
''I don't like losing, especially not like this,'' Doncic said. ''I played terribly. But if we're talking about our season, I'm really proud of this team. ... Nobody had us here. But I promise we fought until the end.''
''We need Luka to go big a lot of nights just to give us a chance, and unfortunately the ball just didn't go for him tonight,'' coach Jason Kidd said. ''I think he carries the load as well as anyone, and I think for us as an organization, we'll help lighten that load as we go forward.''
The Boston Celtics overcame the Miami Heat in game number 5 as they won 93-80 against them and subsequently took a 3-2 lead in the series. For the Celtics, Jaylen Brown scored 25 points, Jayson Tatum added 22 as Al Horford had 16 points and Derrick White added 14 for the Celtics. Tatum ultimately finished with 12 rebounds and nine assists. For the Heats, Bam Adebayo scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for the Heat, who shot 32% in the game - after shooting 33% in Boston's 20-point win in Game 4. Gabe Vincent went on to add 15 points, Jimmy Butler had 13 and Duncan Robinson scored 11 points in what was a disappointing loss for the 2020 finalist. With this result they head to Boston as they will have a chance to close out the series in front of their home crowd.
''I think the mental stress and strain we put on some teams with our defense has worked and carried us through the playoffs at times,'' Celtics coach Ime Udoka said.
''We are not going to make any kind of deflection or any kind of excuse,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''Boston beat us tonight. And let's be clear about that. There's guys that are far from 100% on both sides.''
''We've got an opportunity to do something with this group that's special,'' Brown said. ''Let's not take that for granted.''
''In the first half it was tough because we weren't hitting shots and we were turning the ball over,'' Horford said. ''But the key for us was continuing to do what we do defending, and then on offense playing how we play. And eventually we were able to get it going.''
''We're still lining up,'' Adebayo said. ''We've still got to play these games. We still want to win.''
NBA: Mavericks force game 5 as Celtic drew the series level
(Basketball news) The Dallas Mavericks were on the brink of elimination in the Western Conference standings but somehow managed to force a game 5 against the Golden State Warriors as they beat them 119-109. For the Mavericks, Doncic had 30 points and 14 rebounds, it was the 10th double-double in his 14 games this postseason for Doncic, who also had nine assists. Dorian Finney-Smith had 23 points on 9-of-13 shooting and Bullock added 18 points on 6-of-10 - all 3-pointers. Jalen Brunson had 15 points and Maxi Kleber was 5-of-6 shooting overall for 13 points. For the Warriors, Curry had 20 points as Jonathan Kuminga had 17 points from the bench.
''Just got to finish the game. A win is a win,'' said Doncic, who was 10-of-26 shooting with only three made 3s but got plenty of help from his supporting cast.
'Everybody in that locker room felt like we had more basketball to play,'' Finney-Smith said. ''We just wanted to get the win anyway. ... Feel like we came out desperate in that first half.''
''It was almost like an ego win (for Dallas). You come out and really have nothing to lose. So that confidence started early,'' Stephen Curry said. ''And we really didn't do anything to slow it down, and then that's when the avalanche starts. You tip your hat to them.''
''Just made the decision to see if we could pull off a miracle, but it wasn't meant to be,'' coach Steve Kerr said. ''Dallas was great tonight. They deserved to win. This is the conference finals. This is how it's supposed to be.''
''I still believe we can win. Swept or not swept, if you lose, you lose,'' Doncic said. ''Got to go game by game.''
The Boston Celtics tied the series 2-2 in the Eastern Conference finals as they beat the Miami Heat 102-82. For the Celtics, Jayson Tatum scored 31 points as Payton Pritchard had 14 points for them, Derrick White added 13 points, eight rebounds and six assists, and Robert William finished with 12 points and nine rebounds. For the Heat, Victor Oladipo led the scoring with 23 points, their starting five of All-Star Jimmy Butler (six points), Kyle Lowry (three points), P.J. Tucker (no points), Max Strus (no points) and Bam Adebayo (nine points) were a combined 7 of 36 shooting. They go to Miami for game 5 tomorrow.
''Obviously, we knew how important this game was,'' Tatum said. ''Everybody just had to come up with a different sense of urgency.''
'Just got to muster that same energy when we came off a win as well as a loss,'' Udoka said. ''This is a three-game series now. Can't always just flip the mindset when we come off a loss and get a little desperate.''
''They came out and jumped us,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''We're not making any excuses. They outplayed us tonight for sure. We never could get any kind of grip on the game.''
''It's a part of the playoffs. You learn to adapt,'' Adebayo said. ''Guys being out, guys playing half, guys playing 20 minutes in the game, just depends. You've just got to find a way to win.'
Celtics bounce back as Warriors take a 2-0 series lead in the finals
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics bounced back in game 2 when they beat the Miami Heat 127-102 as the series is now levelled at 1-1. For the Celtics, Jayson Tatum scored 27 points, Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown each had 24 as Grant Williams scored 19 points, Payton Pritchard and Al Horford each had 10 for them. For the Heat, Jimmy Butler had 29 points in 32 minutes as Gabe Vincent and Victor Oladipo each scored 14 points, and Tyler Herro added 11 points. The 25-point halftime lead was the biggest by the Celtics in any road playoff game, topping a 22-point edge at the break at Chicago in 2009. With this result the series is on a knife's edge as both teams head to Boston tomorrow to play game three, which could be a crucial match for both the teams.
''Guys have pride and looked at a golden opportunity that we kind of lost (in Game 1) and thought we could do much better,'' Udoka said. ''And we did that tonight.''
''We were pretty confident,'' Pritchard said.
''This only counts as one,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''That's what the experienced players in the locker room and staff understand. We don't like it. They played extremely well. You have two really good teams and we just have to figure some things out.''
''It's a loss, whether you lose by one or by 20,'' Vincent said. ''It's regroup, go back to the drawing board and get ready for Game 3.''
''They came out,'' Heat centre Bam Adebayo said, ''and hit us in the mouth.''
''I got to get my rest, got to get my health back, got to watch and see some things and come out and execute in this game,'' Smart said.
''It has to hurt,'' Butler said. ''They tried to embarrass us. They did embarrass us. ... Overall, we just have to be better.''
The Golden State Warriors have taken a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference final as they beat the Dallas Mavericks 126-117. For the Warriors, Curry scored 32 points with six 3-pointers and eight more rebounds, Looney had a career-high 21 points and 12 rebounds, Jordan Poole scored 23 points off the bench, Andrew Wiggins had 16 and Klay Thompson added 15 points for a second straight game. Golden State scored 62 points in the paint. For the Mavericks, Doncic scored 42 points and shot 12 for 23 and shined in a game of brilliant shotmaking. The Warriors finished 56.1% from the floor. In the first half alone, Dallas edged Golden State 52.3% to 51.2%, including a remarkable 55.6% to 53.3% from 3-point range.
''I feel honoured just to be a part of the ride,'' Looney said.
''We have that attitude and spirit that we're never out of it,'' Curry said.
''We know how good they are as a third-quarter team,'' Dallas forward Reggie Bullock said. ''It's just something that slipped away from us as the game continued to go on.''
''Against someone that good you're just trying to limit the easy stuff,'' Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.
''It's the Warriors. They have a great team. They're a championship team. We've got to adjust our defence,'' Doncic said. ''... We were up 19, so it's a tough situation. But we can't look back. What happened, happened. So we've got to move on.''
''We're on the road against one of the best teams in the league. It happens. They held serve,'' Mavs coach Jason Kidd said. ''We've seen this in Phoenix so now we have to go back and just focus on Game 3.''
Kerr asked his team to settle down. ''I told them that if we developed some poise in the second half, that the game would come to us,'' he said. ''But I thought we were so scattered in the first half. Maybe emotionally more so than anything. Dallas came out and just punched us.''
Warriors win against Mavericks in the Western conference finals
(Basketball news) The Golden State Warriors produced an empathic performance to beat the Dallas Mavericks 112-87 in game 1 of the Western Conference finals. For the Warriors, Curry had 21 points and a game-high 12 rebounds as Wiggins added 19 points, making six of his first eight shots on the way to shooting 8 for 17. Jordan Poole also scored 19 off the bench and Thompson scored all of his 15 points after halftime.. For the Mavericks, Doncic scored 20 points but shot just 6 for 18 and 3 of 10 from deep as Jalen Brunson scored 14 points but missed all five of his 3s. With this result the Warriors take the lead in a best of seven series as they now face them on 20th May in the Chase Arena in San Francisco.
The Warriors reached five straight NBA Finals from 2015-19 but missed the playoffs the past two years before this run as they look ever determined to get to the NBA finals this year. Luka Doncic appeared to be nursing some kind of injury which he might have sustained during the intense 7 game series against the Phoenix Suns. Doncic, who was averaging 31.5 points in the playoffs, was a tall task for the Warriors defence to manage him but they were up for the task as they had already handled two-time reigning MVP Nikola Jokic of Denver in the first round, then Ja Morant early last series before his knee injury. The Mavericks need Luka Doncic fit and firing as their first final since 2011 rests on his shoulders.
''Just make him work, that was the main thing,'' Wiggins said.
''A great job. That's it,'' Doncic said. ''They did a great job.''
''They did a really good job. Wiggins picked him up full court,'' Mavs coach Jason Kidd said. ''They went box-and-one, they went zone. We understood coming into the series that we were going to see that. We'll go back and look at the video and see what we can do better.''
''I thought Wiggs was fantastic,'' coach Steve Kerr said. ''Doncic is as difficult a cover as there is in this league. ... It's important to make him work. He's so good. Any great player in the league you're trying to limit the damage that they do.''
''It is how we play,'' Curry said. ''When you have that ability to create separation like we did in the third quarter, it's a fun way to play.''
''I didn't have a field goal in the first half but that will never discourage me,'' Thompson said. ''I will always hunt my shot.''
''It was great to be back. I missed being out there with the guys,'' Kerr said. ''Amazing atmosphere here at Chase and we're excited to keep going.''
''We would like to play our pace but the Warriors have a unique pace, they're going to get out and put a lot of pressure on your defence in transition,'' Kidd said. ''We have to be cautious of that. We don't want a track meet.''
NBA: The Boston Celtics and Dallas Mavericks make the Conference finals
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics knocked out the defending Champions as they beat the Milwaukee Bucks in the final game 7 decider 109-81. For the Celtics, Grant Williams scored a career-high 27 points and hit seven 3-pointers, Jayson Tatum added 23 and Boston set a Game 7 record with 22 3-pointers as Jaylen Brown scored 19 points and Marcus Smart added 11 crucial points. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo had 25 points, 20 rebounds and nine assists but he was just 3 of 11 in the paint in the second half, including 1 for 6 the fourth quarter as Jrue Holiday added 21 points and eight assists while Brook Lopez finished with 15 points and 10 rebounds. With this result, the Celtics will face top-seeded Miami beginning Tuesday in a rematch of the 2020 East finals. The Heat beat the Celtics in six games in that series at Walt Disney World.
''As much as it hurt to lose Game 5, I was looking forward to that challenge,'' Tatum said. ''I believe in myself, I believe in this team. I expected to play the way I did and for us to respond the way we did.''
''For me it was like, they're encouraging it, I might as well take advantage,'' Williams said. ''Each one as time went on got more comfortable.''
''Shots that I usually make weren't going in. That's basketball. That's sports,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''Sometimes you win. Sometimes you lose. There's a winner. There's a loser. You've just got to live with it.'
''This is what we played for, why we played the season out, to have home-court advantage in a Game 7,'' Udoka said. ''If you believe in the basketball gods, those things matter.''
Brown said their coach has been the catalyst to put them in this position. ''We didn't want it to be over. We didn't overcome all the stuff we did during the regular season for that to be it. .. At the end of the day, we wanted to come out, leave it all out there. I think we did.''
The Dallas Mavericks produced the upset of the season when they beat the best team in the NBA in game 7 as they took the series 4-3 with a 123-90 blowout victory over the Phoenix Suns. For the Mavericks, Doncic scored 35 points, Spencer Dinwiddie added 30 as both of them were the first teammates to have at least 20 points in a half in Game 7 since Patrick Ewing and Allan Houston did it for the Knicks in 1997. Doncic finished 12 of 19 from the field, including 6 of 11 on 3s. He also got some help in Dinwiddie who had 21 points in the first half with 7-of-10 shooting, including 4 of 5 from 3-point range. For the Suns, Booker finished with 11 points and shot 3 of 14 while Paul had 10 points and four assists as they shot just 37.9% from the field. With this result the Dallas Mavericks are going to face the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference finals.
''A lot of people said it would be a blowout,'' Mavs coach Jason Kidd said with a grin. ''They were right.''
''We played all season to be in this situation,'' Suns guard Chris Paul said. ''It didn't work out for us.''
''I can't get this smile off my face,'' Doncic said. ''I'm just really happy. Honestly, I think we deserved this.''
''It's still kind of shocking,'' Dinwiddie said
''That group has a lot of character and integrity and I know how bad they wanted it,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said. ''We just could not execute tonight. Couldn't make a shot early, that messed with us a little bit and Dallas played their tails of from start to finish.''
''You could see some of the pressure was on them early,'' Kidd said. ''They missed some shots they normally make.''
NBA: Miami Heat qualify to the finals, Mavericks force game no 7
(Basketball series) The Miami Heat became the first team to qualify for the Eastern Conference final when they beat the Philadelphia 76ers 99-90 to clinch the series 4-2. For the Heat, Butler scored 32 points as Max Strus had 20 points and 11 rebounds, PJ Tucker and Bam Adebayo both had 10 points. For the Sixers, Embiid, the NBA scoring champion, had no significant help and scored 20 points with 12 rebounds on 7-of-24 shooting as Tersey Maxey also had 20 points after James Harden had an abysmal game again. With this result the Miami Heats reached their first conference finals since 2013 and the first LeBron-less conference since 2008.
''Now I'm where I belong,'' Butler said. ''Guess where I should have been a long time ago.''
''I think he's one of the ultimate competitors in this profession,'' coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''He was brilliant all series long. The challenges only get tougher here. He saw there was an opportunity to end this tonight and he wasn't going to let this get to seven.''
''I know I tried. I think for the most part, we tried,'' Embiid said. ''It just wasn't good enough.''
''I'm sure since we got him, everybody expected the Houston James Harden,'' Embiid said. ''But that's not who he is anymore.''
''I came to the conclusion at the end of this game that we were not good enough to beat Miami,'' Rivers said
''I don't worry about my job. I think I do a terrific job. If you don't, then you should write it,'' Rivers said. ''Because I worked my butt off to get this team here. When I first got here, no one picked us to be anywhere. Again this year, the same thing. If that's how anyone feels, write it. I'm going to feel secure about it.''
“Joel, my guy. My brother. Who I'd pick for MVP,'' Butler said. ''It feels good to beat him. I'm not going to lie to you. I've got a lot of love for this city. A lot of love for guys in that locker room. So any time you get to beat a former team, it's special.''
The Dallas Mavericks levelled up the series with a 113-86 victory over the Phoenix Suns as they will have to play game 7 to find a winner. For the Mavericks, Doncic scored 33 points as Reggie Bullock scored 19 points for Dallas, going 5 of 11 from 3-point range and Jalen Brunson added 18, Spencer Dinwiddie had a series-high 15, all on 3s (5 of 7). For the Suns, Booker scored 19 points but was shut out from 3-point range (0 of 4) while going 6 of 17. Deandre Ayton had 21 points and 11 rebounds, and Paul added 13 points. With this result the series is tied at 3-3 as both teams will travel to Phoenix to play game 7 on the 15th.
''I don't know if he was playing as if he was trying to do something different,'' Kidd said. ''I think he enjoys the moment. You guys have seen a little bit longer than I have up close. He's not afraid of the stage. I think you guys call it the first time winning an elimination game. He'll be in this situation a long, long time.''
''I don't have enough time to talk about everything that's eating at me,'' coach Monty Williams said. ''I didn't think we understood the desperation they were going to play with. Couple that with the turnovers that we had tonight, it's a recipe for what we just got.''
''Greatest two words in sports,'' Booker said. ''I'm excited to feel the energy. I'm excited to be a part of it. It's a great opportunity.''
''I think we won this game on the defensive end,'' Doncic said. ''We've got another game. That's fun. It's the playoffs, and we're going to give our energy.''
NBA: Suns blowout the Mavericks in game 5 while the Heat win
(Basketball news) The Phoenix Suns produced a clinical performance to take the series lead as they beat the Mavericks 110-80. For the Suns, Booker scored 28 points, Deandre Ayton added 20 as Cam Johnson came off the bench to score 14 points. Booker now has 804 points in 30 career playoff games. The 25-year-old is one of just 18 players in NBA history with at least 800 points in his first 30 postseason games. For the Mavericks, Doncic finished with 28 points and 11 rebounds, but other than that didn’t really get much support as Jalen Brunson added 21 points. The Mavs shot just 38% from the field. With this result the Suns lead the series 3-2 and are a victory away from making their second consecutive Western Conference playoffs.
''We study film,'' Booker said. ''Coach is coming in with adjustments, we make them and we follow them.''
'The defense tonight - that's the backbone of our program,'' said Williams, who was announced as the Coach of the Year on Monday.
''The one thing we didn't do great today was our pace,'' Doncic said. ''In the last two games, our pace was very good. I think they are one of the best defensive teams, if not the best, in the NBA. They held us to 80. That's pretty impressive. We've got to move the ball and have better pace - faster.''
The Miami Heat produced a dominant performance as they took the series after they beat the Philadelphia 76ers 120-85. For the Heats, Jimmy Butler scored 23 points, Max Strus added 19 points and 10 rebounds as Victor Oladipo scored 13 for Miami, which got 12 from Bam Adebayo and 10 apiece from Tyler Herro and P.J. Tucker. For the Sixers, Joel Embiid scored 17 points for fourth-seeded Philadelphia, which got 14 from James Harden and 12 from Tobias Harris. The 35-point margin of victory matched the biggest so far in this year's playoffs. With this result the Heat are also one victory away from making their first Eastern Conference for the first time since LeBron James left the Miami Heat for the Cavaliers.
''They were just more physical,'' 76ers coach Doc Rivers said. ''We didn't run anything. We didn't run our stuff very well. We played at a snail's pace ... everything they did tonight was harder and better. Their stuff was better, their energy was better.''
''Tonight, we weren't focused enough,'' Embiid said.
''It's just one game,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''They know it. We know it.''
''He's tough,'' Rivers said. ''I think he knew going into all this that there's going to be a couple times when he gets hit in the face. It's going to happen. ... He got up and said he was fine, after a while.''
''I was humbled to be a part of that moment,'' Spoelstra said. ''He's such a great fan there. Over the years, I've said hello a few times, but that was the best interaction. That was genuine. It was cool.''
NBA: Sixers and Mavericks draw their respective series level
(Basketball news) The Philadelphia 76ers have completed the comeback, they have levelled up the series to 2-2 as they defeated Miami Heat 116-108. For the Sixers, Harden scored 31 points, Embiid had 24 points and 11 rebounds as Tyrese Maxey added 18 points in a commanding win. For the Heats, Jimmy Butler scored 40 points on 13 of 20 shooting from the floor, 12 of 13 free throws and nearly one-man willed them to victory as Bam Adebayo scored 21 points and Victor Oladipo added 15 points from the bench. With this victory the Sixers level the series to 2-2 as they will travel to Miami to play the fifth game on 10th May.
''I don't think we've played our best basketball,'' Embiid said.
''Joel's going to be able to play,'' coach Doc Rivers said, laughing.
''It's just James being James,'' Rivers said. ''I felt like he was going to have a big game tonight. You can just sense it.''
''Nothing really changed. I just made shots,'' Harden said.
''I thought we had some really good looks. We just missed them,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.
''He's a good player. He did what he was supposed to do,'' Butler said of Harden.
''That's why he's here,'' Embiid said. ''It's only 2-2. We've got a lot of work to do. But I'm excited about what we can accomplish.''
The Dallas Mavericks also made a comeback in the Western Conference semifinals playoffs as they beat the Phoenix Suns 111-101. For the Mavericks, Doncic scored 26 points as Dorian Finney-Smith scored a playoff career-high 24 points on the most 3-pointers he's had, regular season or playoffs. He was 8 of 12 from deep, including consecutive 3s for a 14-point lead midway through the fourth while Brunson scored 18 points and Davis Bertans started 4 of 4 from 3 and finished with 12 points. For the Suns, Devin Booker scored 35 points as Jae Crowder finished with 15 and Deandre Ayton had 14 points and 11 rebounds. Both teams face each other on 10th May in Phoenix.
''I saw he was going for the rebound and I was surprised,'' Doncic said. ''He said to me, 'Did I push you that hard?' I said, `No, not that hard. But it was a smart play.' And he said, `Yeah, I know.'''
''Last year was a learning experience for us,'' Booker said. ''We went to six games last year with the Lakers, six games with the Clippers, six with the Bucks, six with New Orleans (this year). We understand that it's a series. It's the playoffs for a reason.''
''I've got to look back at it,'' Paul said. ''I mean, I can't put myself in the situation to give them that ability to do that. I've just got to look at myself and figure out how to do better.''
''Everybody's got to take ownership, and it starts with me,'' Williams said. ''I made some decisions tonight that put us in a tough spot. Should have kept Chris out of the game, especially right before halftime. And then as a team, we've got take ownership as far as guarding the ball so we don't have to help as much.''
Sixers and Mavericks make a comeback as they keep their series alive
(Basketball news) The Philadelphia 76ers defeated the Miami Heat 99-79 as they kept the series alive at 2-1. For the Sixers, Embiid inspired the 76ers with his return from a facial injury as he scored 18 points while Danny Green and Tyrese Maxey each scored 21 points. For the Heat, Tyler Herro had 14 and joined Jimmy Butler as the only Heat in double digits. Butler led the Heat with 33 points. With this result the 76ers are back in the series as the Miami Heat still lead the series 2-1, the next match is on 8th in Philadelphia.
''We have a good chance to win it all,'' Embiid said. ''We've got to stay healthy.''
''Any plan where you can have Joel as part of the plan is a much better plan,'' coach Doc Rivers said.
''You add Job to any team, home or away, the game, the scouting report, it changes drastically,'' Butler said. ''It's been like that for his entire career.''
''Even when he's not his normal self, he helps us a ton,'' Green said.
''I knew his presence would have an impact,'' Rivers said. ''I was positive of that.''
''It's about doing whatever possible to protect it as much as possible,'' Embiid said.
''This is what you have to expect,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''He's an MVP-caliber player.''
The Dallas Mavericks also made a comeback against the number 1 seed in the West as they beat the Phoenix Suns 103-94. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic had 26 points and 13 rebounds as Brunson led the scoring with 28 points, Bullock scored 15 and Finney-Smith scored 14, as both had four 3s apiece. For the Suns, Booker scored 18 but was just 2 of 7 inside the 3-point line, and Paul had 12 on just nine shots (five made) in the Suns' lowest-scoring game of the season. With this result the Mavericks have kept the series alive and will hope to tie the series on 8th May.
''It felt like all seven of 'em were back to back to back,'' said Paul, whose career high for a game in the playoffs is eight turnovers. ''If I don't turn the ball over like that I feel like it's a different game.''
''I found a way to bounce back tonight,'' Brunson said. ''I just can't be satisfied with this. Sunday's going to be another brutal game. I have to bring the same energy, the same intensity, the same everything.''
''When you see your best player doing that, it kind of sets a mood,'' Dorian Finney-Smith said.
''It wasn't like us,'' Booker said. ''You can credit them. They came out, played hard, played desperate. That's that. We've got a series.''
NBA: Suns beat the Mavs as Heat take a 2-0 lead against the Sixers
(Basketball news) The Phoenix Suns are two games away from reaching the Western Conference finals as they beat the Dallas Mavericks 129-109. For the Suns, the 12-time All-Star Chris Paul scored 28 points, including 14 in another spectacular final period as Booker led the Suns with 30 points on 11-of-19 shooting, including 5 of 8 from 3-point range. For the Mavs, Luka Doncic scored 35 points on 13-of-22 shooting as Reggie Bullock added 16 points. With this win the Suns head to Dallas in game 3 tomorrow.
''You've just got to lean on the work,'' Paul said. ''It all goes back to work. You can't cheat the game. You've got to do the strength and conditioning, you've got to lift, you've got to get your rest, you got to get your shots up.
''You guys tell me, you're watching the same thing,'' Booker said. ''It impresses us every time we see it, but it doesn't surprise us. It's just the will to win.''
''We have good players,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said. ''I'd love to sit here and tell you I'm moving the chess pieces around, but we have good players who can knock down shots.''
''He had a great game, but no one else showed,'' Mavs coach Jason Kidd said. ''We've got to get other guys shooting the ball better. We can't win with just him out there scoring 30 a night. Not this time of the year and playing the best team in the league.''
''The mood is fine,'' Doncic said. ''I think a lot of players, it's the first time in this situation. They've got to win four, so it's not over yet. We are going to go back home, our crowd is amazing.''
The Miami Heat beat the Philadelphia 76ers 119-103 as they took a 2-0 lead in the series. For the Heat, Adebayo scored 23 points, Butler had 22 points and 12 assists, as Victor Oladipo scored 19 points on his 30th birthday and Tyler Herro added 18. For the Sixers, Tyrese Maxey scored 34 points, as they got 21 from Tobias Harris and 20 from James Harden. The 76ers' franchise has never recovered to win the series after going 2-0 down in a playoff series. The question going into Friday will revolve around whether Embiid could be ready for Game 3. The league's scoring champion and MVP finalist is recovering from an orbital fracture and concussion and has, not surprisingly, been big-time missed by the 76ers
''It's always nice to win,'' Butler said. ''We just did what we're supposed to do at home.''
''We've just got to go back to the drawing board and try to figure it out,'' Maxey said.
''We don't have a big man right now,'' Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers lamented.
''He's got so many steps to go through,'' Rivers said. ''I don't think he's cleared any of them right now.''
''When it comes down to it, you've got to make shots, especially when you're on the road against a really good team,'' Harden said. ''It's pretty simple.''
'It's not easy to get playoff wins.'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''We had some great stretches, particularly defensively. We had some really good stretches offensively. ... Our defense really carried us to the win, but we had some really timely offensive plays.''
NBA: Heats overcome the Sixers as Mavs lose to the Suns
(Basketball news) The Miami Heat overcame the Philadelphia 76ers 106-92 in the first game of the Eastern Conference semifinal playoffs. For the Heat, Herro scored 25 points - the second-most he'd ever had in a playoff game, while Bam Adebayo finished with 24 points and 12 rebounds, Jimmy Butler added 15 points, as they got 10 points from Gabe Vincent and P.J. Tucker. For the Sixers, Tobias Harris scored 27 points, they got 19 from Tyrese Maxey and 16 points, nine rebounds and five assists from James Harden as they were without their star man Joel Embiid for this fixture. Now they both face each other on the 5th of May.
He's a worker,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''He's relentless.''
''I feel like I was just making plays,'' Adebayo said
''I didn't like how we moved the ball,'' 76ers coach Doc Rivers said. ''I thought we passed late tonight. I thought the physicality affected us tonight and that had an impact. There were too many times, we'd take the extra dribble and by the time we passed it they got there.''
''I liked how we fought back,'' Rivers said. ''I liked how we came out at the beginning of the third quarter ... and then I didn't like the rest of the game from that point on.''
''It's doable. It is doable,'' Maxey said. ''It's not totally out of reach.''
The Phoenix Suns overcame some Luka magic to win 121-114 against the Dallas Mavericks in the first game of the Western Conference semifinal playoffs. For the Suns, Deandre Ayton scored 25 points, Devin Booker added 23 as Paul added 19 points and Cam Johnson had 17 off the bench. For the Mavs, Luka Doncic led the scoring with 45 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists. It's the first time Dallas has advanced to the postseason's second round in Doncic's four-year NBA career as Kleber finished with 19 points. Now both teams face each other on the 5th May at the Footprint Centre Arena in Phoenix.
''We'll take the win,'' Suns point guard Chris Paul said. ''It's not always going to be pretty. We played well most of the game. We'll look at the film tomorrow and see what we need to do differently for Game 2.''
''I thought Maxi and Luka in that first half kept us afloat,'' Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said. ''We could have easily been down 39 at halftime but Maxi and LD were good. LD was good in the second half, too.
'I liked the fact that we weren't settling for 3s tonight,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said. ''A lot of guys were attacking the paint, we were getting floaters and rim shots.''
NBA: Celtics eliminate the Nets as Raptors make a comeback
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics produced a clinical performance to sweep the series 4-0 as they beat Brooklyn 116-112 in game number 4. For the Celtics, Tatum scored 29 points, Jaylen Brown had 22 and the Celtics completed a four-game sweep as Marcus Smart added 20 points and 11 assists. For the Nets, Durant had 39 points, nine assists and seven rebounds as Nic Claxton scored 13 points, Kyrie finished with 20 and Seth Curry 23 points. Now the Celtics will face the winners of the Bucks vs Bulls in the second round of the playoffs.
''Couldn't believe it at all, but I think that's what we're built for,'' Tatum said.
''It's funny to us, because we don't duck and dodge anybody,'' Smart said. ''We knew what we were going to come in here and do.''
''A lot of stuff that may factor into why we lost, but they were just a better team,'' Durant said.
The Toronto Raptors after going down 3-0 in the series have made a magnificent comeback to win game 5 against the Philadelphia 76ers 103-88. For the Raptors, Pascal Siakam had 23 points and 10 rebounds, Precious Achiuwa scored 17 as OG Anunoby and Gary Trent Jr. each scored 16 points. For the Sixers, Embiid had 20 points and 11 rebounds playing with a thumb injury. Harden scored 15 points on 4-of-11 shooting. With this result both teams head to Toronto to play the crucial game 6.
''I was terrible defensively,'' Embiid said. ''There's really no explanation. I've just got to play with more energy, move my feet better. I've just got to be better.''
''We always kind of figure it out,'' Siakam said
''We never brought the fight to them at the beginning of the game, really,'' 76ers forward Tobias Harris said.
''They were the tougher team all night, they were more physical all night,'' Rivers said. ''I don't think it was the second quarter. I thought it was throughout the game.''
''Not exactly the way we would draw it up, but we're happy to still be playing,'' Nurse said.
The Dallas Mavericks took the lead in the series against the Utah Jazz as Luka Doncic powered them to a 102-77 victory over them. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic had 33 points and 13 rebounds as Jalen Brunson, who carried most of the offensive load for them when Doncic was sidelined, scored 24 points. Finney-Smith added 13, and Dwight Powell got the crowd going early with all eight of his points on 4-of-4 shooting in the first quarter. For the Jazz, Jordan Clarkson scored 20 points and Rudy Gobert added 17 points and 11 rebounds in the lowest-scoring game for the Jazz since they lost by 50 at Dallas (118-68) on Nov. 14, 2018.. With this result they head to Utah to play the 6th game of the series.
For his second game, it looks like he's been playing this whole series,'' coach Jason Kidd said. ''His conditioning, his effort on the defensive end. As we talk about rebounding, he's one of the best for us and he did that tonight.''
''They've scrambled extremely hard,'' said Mitchell, who is shooting 20% from 3-point range after being well over 40% the past two playoff years. ''It's a lot to continuously run teams off the line, and they've done a good job of it. They've made us uncomfortable.''
''It was nothing,'' Doncic said. ''It's playoffs, man. There's always going to be attention, but it was nothing. I tried to dunk it. Wasn't successful. These things happen in the playoffs.''
“I don't even remember that,'' Finney-Smith said before smiling. ''I don't even remember last year. Nah, but we put ourselves in a great spot. We've just got to handle our business in Utah.''
Steph magic again sinks the Nuggets, Mavericks take the series lead
(Basketball news) The Golden State Warriors took a 3-0 lead in the playoff series after getting 118-113 victory over the Denver Nuggets. For the Warriors, Stephen Curry and Jordan Poole scored 27 points each, Klay Thompson made six 3-pointers on his way to 26 points as the trio have been too hot to handle for the Denver defence during the course of the entire playoff series. For the Nuggets, Aaron Gordon added 18 points for the Nuggets and Nikola had 37 points but this was their seventh straight loss in the postseason as the other six losses were by an average of 16 points. With this result the Warriors have the chance to wrap up the series on Sunday.
''We played great down the stretch on both'' ends of the court, Thompson said.
''For Draymond to battle him all night and to make that play in the end was just a huge part of the win,'' Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.
''I love how we fought tonight,'' said Malone, who challenged his team to replicate that effort Sunday: ''Are we going to roll over? Are we going to fight like hell and send this back to Golden State?''
''I've been a fighter my whole life. I know how I'm approaching it,'' Cousins said. ''And I expect everyone else in that locker room to do the same. ... I'm a fighter, I'll go out swinging.''
''It was a lovely environment,'' Curry said. ''I love the way we responded.''
The Dallas Mavericks took the series lead by winning 126-118 against the Utah Jazz. For the Mavericks, Brunson scored 31 points playing with a bruised back as they were without their talisman Luka Doncic as Spencer Dinwiddie scored 10 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter for them, Maxi Kleber had 17 points and Dorian Finney-Smith added 14 points. For the Jazz, Donovan Mitchell scored 28 of his 32 points in the second half as Bojan Bogdanovic added 24 and Mike Conley had 21. With this result the Mavericks have taken a 2-1 lead in the playoff series as they play the fourth game on Saturday.
''I saw how hard the team was playing when I was laying back there,'' Brunson said. ''It gave me a little mojo to come back out there and do my thing.''
''We're all on the same page,'' Brunson said. ''We're all clicking. We're all talking and communicating.''
''I just told the guys we haven't done anything,'' Kidd said. ''They won at our place and now we won here. We need to put this game behind us and figure out what we need to do better.''
''His shot-creating and shot-making has been amazing all season, but the determination he has coming down the stretch to hit those big shots and the confidence he has is just fun to watch,'' Kleber said.
''He's unique in his physical strength and his ability to kind of keep his dribble alive in the lane where he really uses his body. He's able to play with his feet on the floor, so if you do try to come over and help, he has the ability to find people and spray the ball out,'' Utah coach Quin Snyder said.
The Memphis Grizzlies made a 26 point comeback to win 105-96 against the Minnesota Timberwolves and also taking the lead in the playoff series. For the Grizzlies, Desmond Bane made seven 3-pointers and had 26 points as Brandon Clarke scored 16 of his 20 points in the second half for Memphis, which closed the game on a staggering 50-16 run over the final 15:10 and Ja Morant recorded his first triple double in the postseason with 16 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. For the Timberwolves, D'Angelo Russell had 22 points and eight assists as last year’s number 1 pick Anthony Edwards finished with 19 points. With this result the Grizzlies take 2-1 series lead as the 4th game will be on Friday at Minnesota.
''We found a way to get some stops. Our offence started clicking a little bit more,'' Bane said, ''and the rest is history.''
''That's why we're really the deepest team in the league,'' said Ja Morant,
“No one said it was going to be easy. We don't want it to be easy. We want it to be extremely hard, and it was,'' said Patrick Beverley,
''When we get too high, it comes back and it haunts us,'' said D'Angelo Russell,
“It's really tough. We've got to regroup,'' said Towns
76ers beat the Raptors again, Steph runs the show against the Nuggets
(Basketball news) The Philadelphia 76ers beat the Toronto Raptors 112-97 in the second game of the 1st round NBA playoffs to take a 2-0 series lead. For the Sixers, Embiid took his lumps and powered his way to 31 points and 11 rebounds as Maxey had 23 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, Tobias Harris had 20 points and 10 rebounds and James Harden scored 14. For the Raptors, OG Anunoby led the scoring with 26 points as Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet each had 20. With this result the 76ers won both the games at home as they get ready to travel to Toronto in the third game of the series tomorrow,
''They put me on the floor a few times and to me, this is where it gets interesting,'' Embiid said. ''I'm like, cool. I'm going to come back with more power and make you foul me.''
That's what we need from the Big Fella,'' Maxey said
''I didn't really want them to set that tone,'' Embiid said. ''I wanted myself and us to set that tone. That's why I picked up that early technical foul.''
''They wanted to muck the game up and play physical, Rivers said. ''I just told our guys to just play through it.''
The Golden State Warriors on the back of a magical Steph Curry performance won 126-106 against the Denver Nuggets to take a 2-0 series lead in the first round of the NBA playoffs in the Western Conference. For the Warriors, Curry came off the bench for a second straight game following a month-long absence with a foot injury, scoring 34 points as no player in the shot clock era had scored as many as 30 points in 23 or fewer minutes in a playoff game. Klay Thompson added 21 points, Curry shot 12 for 17 with five 3s while Jordan Poole scored 29 points to complete a rout. For the Nuggets, Nikola Jokic had 26 points and 11 rebounds before being ejected with 7 minutes left as Austin Rivers managed 17 points off the bench. Now the Warriors travel to Denver on Thursday to play the third game.
''The first half a little pep in my step and the body felt good, I was able to kind of get to some spots,'' Curry said. ''When you make certain shots it feels a little different, it feels a little bit more normal and more emotion kind of comes out, especially with that layoff, so it was a nice feeling.''
''It didn't surprise me because we've been watching this for a long time with Steph,'' coach Steve Kerr said. ''You never really are surprised when he has an outburst like that. It's great to see.''
''If you feel like you're getting under their skin you press up a little more,'' Green said. ''If you don't feel like you're getting under their skin, you press up a little more.''
The Dallas Mavericks made a comeback against the Utah Jazz to win 110-104 as they now tied up the playoff series 1-1. The Mavericks were without their star Luka Doncic but the likes of Brunson scored a career-high 41 points, Maxi Kleber had 25 with eight of their playoff-record 22 made 3-pointers.Brunson was the starting point guard in place of Doncic as he became the fifth Dallas player to score 40 points in a playoff game. He is the first Mavericks player to do that without committing a turnover. The other 40-point scorers were Doncic, Dirk Nowitzki, Rolando Blackman and Nick Van Exel. For the Jazz, Donovan Mitchell had 34 points for Utah, while Bojan Bogdanovic had 25 and Jordan Clarkson 21 as Rudy Gobert had eight points and 17 rebounds. The Mavericks go to Utah on Thursday with the series finely poised.
''I started this morning, I was talking to (Dorian Finney-Smith) and I told him, `Doe, I'm going to let 10 3s fly tonight.' And he said, `That's my dog.' And that kind of set the tone for the day,'' Kleber said. ''The mindset is we know they're going to leave certain guys open to shoot. We've just got to let it fly.''
''We did what we had to do, which was win tonight. But we were only focused on tonight,'' Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said. ''We understand what's in front of us, what's coming. It's going to be a hostile environment.''
''We tried to go out there and take both (games). Didn't happen. You know we're not going to overreact. We're going to go home, and we've got to take care of business. Simple as that,'' Mitchell said. ''At the end of the day, we're happy we took a game and go back and take care of business.''
''The telltale is we can't have Brunson have the night he had and also be able to kick the ball out for those looks,'' Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. ''And when those passes are kicked out, I thought we weren't as sharp mentally in our ability to rotate. And that's something that we've done before.''
''I'm just playing how the defense is giving me, just seeing how they're defending certain things. Just stepping into certain shots,'' Brunson said. ''Yeah, the 5-of-5 start is great, but I had the same mentality when I was 0 for 5 last game, or whatever. ... You can't fluctuate whenever, not even when (Doncic) is in or out. Because you need guys to make plays.'
NBA: Mavericks secured a playoff berth as Clippers beat the Suns
(Basketball news) Mavericks secured a playoff berth after they beat the Detroit Pistons 131-113. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic had 26 points, 14 assists and eight rebounds, Jalen Brunson had 24 points as they reached 50 wins this season. For the Pistons, Rookie of the Year candidate Cade Cunningham had 25 points, nine assists and seven rebounds. With this result the Mavericks moved 20 games above .500 for the first time since 2011, when they went on to win the NBA title. The Dallas Mavericks are going to earn home-court advantage in the playoffs, for the first time since Kidd was playing during championship season. Their current record stands at 50-30 and are currently 4th in the Western Conference standings with two games to go.
''It's a great accomplishment,'' coach Jason Kidd said. ''The guys in that locker room can't take that lightly because it's not easy to do.''
“I think it's pretty impressive,'' Doncic said. ''We started the season kind of slow. I'm proud of how we played and hopefully we get to 52 (wins).''
''That's going to be a top team in the West,'' Casey said. ''I wanted them to feel it and experience it.''
''They do a great job of spreading out and making 3-point shots,'' Casey said. ''You make one mistake and they make you pay. They're a great offensive team, exactly what we want to be in terms of moving the basketball and knocking down 3s,''
The Los Angeles Clippers won against a rested Phoenix Suns 113-109. For the Clippers it was a welcome return for Paul George and Norman Powell after being out of the majority of the season. Norman Powell scored 24 points and Paul George added 19 points as Ivica Zubac had 13 points and 11 rebounds. For the Suns, they were without Devin Booker and Chris Paul and fellow starters Deandre Ayton and Jae Crowder as the second unit played, Ish Wainwright scored a career-high 20 points, Aaron Holiday added 16 points and Bismack Biyombo had 14 points and 12 rebounds. The only starter in double figures was Payne with 13 points. With this result, the Clippers have secured the 8th place in the standings with a record of 40-40.
''You can never relax in the NBA,'' Clippers coach Tyronn Lue said. ''The players are too good, the coaches are too good, and as soon as you let your guard down things like this can happen.''
''It's a great lesson for our team and any kid watching, you just play it out,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said. ''We just stayed with it and had that Suns grit.''
''When you have games like this, you find out who that guy is that you may be able to throw into a big game,'' Williams said. ''You build that confidence in games like this.''
''Playing with PG still didn't seem real to me,'' Powell said. ''I looked up to him growing up. Early on in my career he gave me some words of encouragement that stuck with me.''
''We just tried to play off one another,'' George said. ''The biggest thing for me was playing off the ball and letting Norm get comfortable. He's a big-time playmaker and scorer off the ball.''
The other results were:
- Nets 110 - 98 Knicks
- Bulls 94 - 117 Celtics
- Hawks 118 - 103 Wizards
- Jazz 137 - 101 Thunder
Tomorrow’s fixture are:
- Hornets vs Magic
- Bucks vs Celtics
- Raptors vs 76ers
- Pelicans vs Trail Blazers
- Timberwolves vs Spurs
- Nuggets vs Grizzlies
- Warriors vs Lakers
NBA: Nets win while Mavericks inch closer to securing a playoff place
(Basketball news) Brooklyn Nets went back to winning ways after they won 130-123 against the Detroit Pistons. For the Nets, Kevin Durant scored 41 points he connected on 14 of 23 shots, 4 of 6 from 3-point range and all nine of his foul shots while adding 11 rebounds, five assists and three blocks as Kyrie Irving added 24 points in his second home appearance since New York exempted the vaccine rule and Drummond added 14 points and 13 rebounds. For the Pistons, Cade Cunningham led the scoring with 34 points. Isaiah Stewart and Saddiq Bey each had 15. With this result the Nets improved their record to 40-36 and are currently 8th in the Eastern Conference standings.
''I want to get better shots sometimes, but like a couple of them are like, `I'm hot, let me risk it,''' Durant said. ''I was just trying to get the best shots that I could. Sometimes it might be over a guy in the lane, but I feel like that's open and I have to keep knocking them down.''
''We can't hang our hat on the second half, we have to play a complete game,'' Drummond said. ''It's never going to be easy to make that turn against great teams. Not that the Pistons aren't a great team. They played a great game, but we just turned it up in the second half.''
''We're going to have to make our staple as a team on the defensive end, because if we're going back and forth in a shooting contest, obviously we'll still be in the game but can lead to mistakes on our end,'' Irving said.
''I know their record isn't good, but they still have pros over there,'' Durant added. ''They still made shots early and gained confidence as a team. This was a good test for us.''
The Dallas Mavericks are close to securing a playoff place after a 128-110 victory over the struggling Lakers. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic scored 34 points in a triple-double as he finished with 12 rebounds and 12 assists and Reggie Bullock scored 17 points as he was 5 of 8 from 3. For the Lakers, Malik Monk scored 28 points and Russell Westbrook had 25 which dropped to their third straight defeat for their fifth losing streak this season as they steadily slid away from .500. With this result the Mavericks have virtually secured a place in the NBA playoffs as their current record stands at 47-29 and are just one victory away from overtaking the Warriors in third place in the Western Conference standings.
''With those guys out, we're at a talent deficit, so the focus and execution has to make up for it,'' Vogel said. ''This is just the latest dose of adversity that this year's team has faced. When you lose 'Bron, OK, you have to adjust yet again throughout a season of setbacks.''
''We respect who they are,'' Dallas coach Jason Kidd. ''They're dangerous. (Monk) played well. Russ played well. We took care of business from the start. I think those guys set the tone. Three great quarters of basketball.''
The other results were:
- Wizards 94 - 107 Bulls
- 76ers 116 - 118 Bucks
- Clippers 121 - 115 Jazz
Tomorrow’s matches are:
- Pacers vs Nuggets
- Cavs vs Mavericks
- Wizards vs Magic
- Raptors vs Timberwolves
- Celtics vs Heat
- Knicks vs Hornets
- Rockets vs Kings
- Thunder vs Hawks
- Spurs vs Grizzlies
- Warriors vs Suns
- Trail Blazers vs Pelicans
Lakers lose three in a row and Warriors also lose to the Timberwolves
(Basketball news) The Lakers suffered their third straight loss after the all star break as they lost to the Dallas Mavericks 109-104. For the Mavs, Luka Doncic scored seven of his 25 points in the fourth quarter, Jalen Brunson added 22 points as Dorian Finney-Smith had 16 points and nine rebounds for the Mavericks, who hung on for their eighth win in 10 games. For the Lakers, LeBron James scored 26 points and Carmelo Anthony had 20 for the Lakers, who took their sixth loss in seven games despite erasing a 21-point deficit in just over 12 minutes. With this result the Mavs improved their record 37-25 and sit just a win behind the Utah Jazz in 5th in the Western Conference standings.
''At halftime we told them, `They're coming. LeBron is coming,'' Dallas coach Jason Kidd said. ''In the third quarter, LeBron put on a show, but we didn't lose our composure. That's one of the things we've gotten better at, and in the fourth quarter we got back to what we've done at Golden State. We held them to 17 points, and that's pretty good.''
''We stayed together and just executed the game plan, played the game,'' Doncic said. ''My mentality is to close the game with the best shot possible. We executed down the stretch.''
''I don't know if you can do a better job on Luka than we did tonight,'' Lakers coach Frank Vogel said. ''Our guys really competed. Our helpers really competed, but he had that stretch in crunch time where he scored a few buckets in a row. Not good enough. ... It hurts. All these guys are hurting there. We're putting in the work.''
“We still have games to play,'' James said. ''Until you stomp me out, cut my head off, bury me 12 feet under, I've got a chance. So that's my confidence. We've got to come here and win ball games and play better, but as long as we've got ball games to play, we've got a chance.''
''I hit my head (on the rim),'' Doncic said with a laugh. ''We're not going to talk about that. Let me enjoy the moment.''
The Golden State Warriors lost to the Timberwolves 129-114. For the Timberwolves Karl Anthony Towns had 39 points and nine rebounds he went 14 for 22 from the floor and D'Angelo Russell pitched in 22 points, and Malik Beasley added 20 points on 6-for-9 shooting from 3-point range for Minnesota. For the Warriors, Stephen Curry led them with 34 points and Gary Payton II added 14 points. With this result the Timberwolves improved their record to 34-29 and sit comfortably in 7th place in the Western Conference table.
''Nights like tonight where you just don't play a good brand of basketball defensively to give yourself a chance to win on the road against a team that you allow to have life all night, you're not going to win a lot of games that way,'' Curry said.
''We're going to be fine long-term. I'm excited about our team and excited about where we can go, but we've just got to weather this storm,'' coach Steve Kerr said.
''He played hard, played to exhaustion,'' coach Chris Finch said. ''At one point he had to ask to come out. Super inspirational for his guys tonight.''
The other results were:
- Wizards 116 - 113 Pistons
- Raptors 109 - 108 Nets
- Celtics 107 - 98 Hawks
- Rockets 100 - 113 Clippers
Tomorrow's fixtures are:
- Magic vs Pacers
- Cavs vs Hornets
- 76ers vs Knicks
- Pelicans vs Kings
- Bucks vs Heat
- Rockets vs Jazz
- Nuggets vs Thunder
- Suns vs Trail Blazers
The NBA All Star week is set to kick off as Team LeBron take on Team Durant
(Basketball news) The NBA All Star week is all set to kick off as Team LeBron take on Team Durant in Cleveland. Like every year the NBA All-Star Weekend will bring fun, frolic as well as new and exciting game events that will enthrall every spectator all over the world. There will be some for Indian fans to cheer for as Ranveer Singh will participate in the celebrity All Star game also.
LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Stephen Curry, DeMar DeRozan, Nikola Jokic, Luka Doncic, Darius Garland, Chris Paul, Jimmy Butler, Donovan Mitchell, Fred VanVleet, James Harden
Joel Embiid, Ja Morant, Jayson Tatum, Trae Young, Andrew Wiggins, Devin Booker, Karl-Anthony Towns, Zach LaVine, DeJounte Murray, Khris Middleton, LaMelo Ball, Rudy Gobert
The 71st NBA All-Star Game is all set to be the star attraction of the NBA All-Star event will be this iconic encounter between Team Durant vs Team Lebron which will take place on the 20th February. The all star game is unlike a traditional game of basketball as the rules of this game will be a bit different. The winning team will have to hit the target score to achieve as there will be no time limit assigned. The target score is assigned on the basis of the team’s performance and also scoring based on the first three-quarters of the game. This system was brought into play in the 2020 season after a lot of criticism was received for the All Star games not being competitive.
Another star attraction every year in the All Star week is the dunk contest as this year Cole Anthony, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Obi Toppin and Jalen Green will compete in the competition. The Dunk contest consists of four competitors who take part in this Slam Dunk contest. Each individual gets the chance of two dunks for the first round as the top two players in terms of with the most points after two dunks move on. Then in the final two finalists will get two dunk each, and ultimately the player with the highest combined dunk score in the final will be adjudged as the winner but the competition continues even if the scores are levelled as a winner is mandatory.
The NBA three point contest also takes place as this year CJ McCollum, Trae Young, Zach LaVine, Desmond Bane, Karl-Anthony Towns, Fred VanVleet, Luke Kennard and Patty Mills will participate. This special event is an individual event. Each player will get the chance to score a maximum of 40 points. In the allotted 70 seconds, a player will have to shoot that 27 balls. The aggregate highest of the three scorers of the rounds will then move ahead into the championship round. Finally, the highest scorer of this round will be judged as the winner of this competition.
James Harden moves to the 76ers as lot players move on the NBA trade deadline
(Basketball news) The NBA trade deadline was a full-on fire drill from start to finish with landscape-altering blockbusters, under-the-radar fringe moves, conflicting reports by NBA insiders, and the deafening silence from a couple of marquee franchises in disarray. A lot of marquee players made unexpected moves for big, so let us take a look at these season defining deals:
Sixers receive: James Harden, Paul Millsap
Nets receive: Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, two first-round picks
The move comes after an unexpected turn of events as James Harden wanted to move out of the struggling Nets and join Doc Rivers Philadelphia 76ers. On the other hand the Nets received a world class young point guard in the form of Ben Simmons who hasn’t played a single match this season. The Nets run a switch-heavy defence as Simmons should fit in like a glove in the offence. He is one of the very few players who can guard every position and might be the most versatile defender in the league. The Nets have badly missed a strong point of attack defender, and Simmons excels there too.
The Sixers have added some more juice in their offence especially in the playoff games, so Harden will obviously help them offensively. Doc Rivers will have to find some balance between Embiid and Harden, but an overabundance of quality isolation players is certainly a better problem and some one who can create his own offence is better than a player who didn't want to play for their franchise. Defensively, Harden's reputation speaks for itself but teams have to manage his off field antics as Dayerl Morey is familiar on how to handle him.
Dallas gets: Spencer Dinwiddie, Davis Bertans
Washington gets: Kristaps Porzingis, 2022 second-round pick
The Porzingis trade represents a major power shift for the Mavericks. They had acquired Porzingis from the New York Knicks in a trade deal in 2019 with the hopes that he would be a co-star alongside Luka Doncic. Porzingis has always been dealt with a series of injuries, including surgeries on both knees, but he still managed to average 20.0 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in 134 games for the Mavericks over three seasons. Porzingis, who subsequently missed the past five games, has two seasons remaining on his five-year, $158 million contract.
Dinwiddie, 28, provides the Mavericks a scoring and playmaking boost. He signed a three-year, $54 million contract with the Wizards last offseason and has career averages of 12.9 points and 5.1 assists. Having Dinwiddie also gives the Mavericks insurance in case guard Jalen Brunson leaves Dallas as an unrestricted free agent this summer, although sources say the team remains optimistic that it will re-sign the 25-year-old.
"Kristaps is an All-Star player whose unique talents will fit well within our system and allow him to impact the game for us in multiple ways," Wizards general manager Tommy Sheppard said. "He will get a fresh start with our team and provide us with the opportunity to play multiple lineups that feature size, versatility and shooting ability."
Boston receives: Derrick White
San Antonio receives: Josh Richardson,Romeo Langford, 2022 first-round pick (protected)
For Boston, White, 27, should fit in nicely alongside Boston's star wing tandem of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. The 6-foot-4 guard, averaged 14.4 points and 5.6 assists per game this season and is a strong two-way player who has familiarity with Celtics coach Ime Udoka, whom he played under when Udoka served as an assistant coach in San Antonio. White also played alongside Tatum, Brown and Marcus Smart with Team USA in the World Cup in 2019.
Richardson, 28, has had a nice comeback season with the Celtics after his horrible seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers and Dallas Mavericks. Richardson is shooting 39.7% from 3-point range after being traded to Boston in the offseason and agreeing to a one-year contract extension shortly thereafter. Langford was the 14th pick in the 2019 NBA draft but injuries have limited him to only 94 games over three seasons and he is averaging 4.7 points in 44 games this season as the Spurs receive a good young player.
The other trades that took place were:
Detroit receives: Marvin Bagley III (via Sacramento)
LA Clippers receive: Semi Ojeleye (via Milwaukee),Rodney Hood (via Milwaukee),Draft rights to Vanja Marinkovic (via Sacramento)
Milwaukee receives: Serge Ibaka (via LA Clippers),Second-round pick (via Sacramento),Second-round pick (via Detroit),Cash considerations (via LA Clippers)
Sacramento receives: Donte DiVincenzo (via Milwaukee),Josh Jackson (via Detroit), Trey Lyles (via Detroit), Draft rights to David Michineau (via LA Clippers), Draft considerations (via Detroit)
Toronto receives:Thaddeus Young, Drew Eubanks,2022 second-round pick (via Detroit)
San Antonio receives:Goran Dragic, 2022 first-round pick (protected 1-14)
NBA: Nets win as Kyrie Irving makes a comeback, Mavericks stun the Warriors
(Basketball news) The Brooklyn Nets welcomed back Kyrie Irving as they won 129-121 against the Indiana Pacers. Kyrie Irving was ineligible to play home games because he is not vaccinated which is compulsory in New York City and the Nets had decided against allowing him to just play road games for most of the season but they changed their mind last month as he scored scored 22 points to rally the Nets to a much needed victory. For the Nets, Kevin Durant had 39 as they recovered from a 19 point deficit as LaMarcus Aldridge scored 13 points in 16 minutes. For the Pacers, Domantas Sabonis had 32 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists and Lance Stephenson, who had previously played for the Pacers scored 30 points in his first home game with the Pacers after signing a 10-day contract. With this result the Nets improved their record to 24-12 as they stayed second in the Eastern Conference standings.
''He looks like himself, not that that's a surprise,'' Nets coach Steve Nash said.''It came down to defense and effort, and the second half was night and day to the first,'' Nash added . ''It took us getting in a deep hole before we showed them the respect the game and them the respect they deserved.''
''He didn't act nervous, he has a nice poker face,'' Durant said. ''He's a quiet guy. He plays with energy and passion.''
Irving said he was nervous, “it was different from any previous debut in his basketball career. This meant a little more, taking eight months off and so much uncertainty,'' he said ''I settled down closer to the second half. Whatever the team (needs), I'll do.''
''Just working out for two years, waiting for this moment,'' Stephenson said. ''I'm so happy to be here, it's home. It's like playing in front of family.''
The Dallas Mavericks stunned the number 1 seed in the west as they won 99-82 on a night when Dallas Mavericks retired Dirk Nowitzki's number. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic dominated the proceedings as he scored 26 points, the 22-year-old sensation played aggressively and was 10 of 12 on free throws with 8 assists and 7 rebounds.to his name, Dorian Finney-Smith scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half and had nine rebounds and two blocks. For the Warriors, Andrew Wiggins scored 17 points as Steph Curry again had a rough night with 14 points to his name. At 29-8, the Warriors dropped into a tie with the Phoenix Suns for the best record in the NBA. With this result the Mavericks improved their record to 15-16 as they moved to 8th in the Western Conference standings.
''The body of work over the course of this year's been pretty solid,'' said Curry, who scored 14 points and made just five of 24 shots coming off his worst shooting night of the season. ''This stretch has not been great, not up to my standards. So you've just to stick to the program. It'll come around.''
''There are so many things going through your head,'' said Jason Kidd ''You know the Warriors are going to score. Steph is going to make 3s. We just tried to make it as tough as possible and on offense take care of the ball. And our defense did a great job in giving us a chance to win.
“Everyone's throwing everything at him,'' coach Steve Kerr said. ''Their best defender. Their double teams. They're trying to make it as difficult as possible. I thought tonight he pressed a little bit. He's trying hard to get out of it.''
''An icon,'' Curry said when asked about Dirk Nowitzki. ''He did it his way, playing with the same franchise for 21 years. Just what he meant to the city, to this organization. He opened up the gates for international players to believe they could have amazing careers in the NBA and give them confidence.''
The other results were:
- Hornets 140 - 111 Pistons
- Wizards 111 - 114 Rockets
- Magic 106 - 116 76ers
- Celtics 97 - 99 Spurs
- Timberwolves 98 - 90 Thunder
- Bucks 111 - 117 Raptors
- Nuggets 109 - 115 Jazz
- Trail Blazers 109 - 115 Heat
- Kings 102 - 108 Hawks
Tomorrow's fixtures are:
- Knicks vs Celtics
- Pelicans vs Warriors
- Grizzlies vs Pistons
- Suns vs Clippers
Suns go joint top as the Nets extended their lead in the Eastern Conference
(Basketball news) Phoenix Suns beat the in-form Washington Wizards 118-98. For the Suns, McGee scored 17 points and Ayton added 15 as the combo dominated the interior, pushing the Suns to 58 points in the paint. All five starters and eight total players scored in double figures. Landry Shamet had 16 points and made four 3-pointers and Paul had 12 points and six assists. They have won 22 of 24 games dating to Oct. 27. For the Wizards, Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 26 points on 11-of-18 shooting but the rest of the team couldn't muster much offense. With this result the Suns go level with Warriors at the top of the Western Conference with a record of 23-5 as Wizards move to 7th in the Eastern Conference with a record of 15-15.
'We were ready,'' Williams said. ''That was pretty cool. The outcome was the residual of the focus and determination we showed on defense, holding that team to 98 points and having eight guys in double figures.''
''We are in a rut right now,'' Wizards forward Montrezl Harrell said. ''Nobody is going to feel bad for us, brother. We've got to figure it out.”
The Brooklyn Nets continued their good start to the season with a 114-105 over the Philadelphia 76ers. Durant scored 34 points, making a four-point play with the game tied and 1:46 left as that turned to the turning point in the game. The Nets were missing seven players because of coronavirus health and safety protocols. Blake Griffin and Nic Claxton both added a season-high 17 points as Patty Mills scored 14 points for them. For the 76ers, Joel Embiid had 32 points, nine rebounds and six assists in the 76ers' third straight loss as Seth Curry scored 29 points to lead a valiant effort from Doc Rivers' side. With this result the Nets improved their record to 21-8 as they comfortably lead the Eastern Conference
'It's a challenge knowing how you're going to come into the games because a lot of these teams, they scheme for me a little differently,'' Durant said.
'We can all hoop,'' Claxton said of the young players forced into extended action. ''A lot of attention is going to KD so we're just making plays.''.
So is it better to be over the threshold than to not be playing until you have a healthy roster?'' Nash said. ''Or is it better to have enough to play but to be short-handed and the burden and the toll it takes on these guys and knowing that you're going to have guys coming back who haven't been able to practice or play basketball. So it is definitely tricky to navigate.''
The Lakers won dramatically against the Dallas Mavericks as they defeated them 107-104. Rookie Austin Reaves swished a 3-pointer with 0.9 seconds left in overtime to give the Los Angeles Lakers a much needed victory. For the Lakers, James scored 24 points, Westbrook added 23 and Davis had 20 points and 12 rebounds after missing two games with a sore left knee. For the Mavericks, Jalen Brunson scored 25 points and Kristaps Porzingis had his eighth double-double this season with 23 points and 12 rebounds for the Mavericks, who played their third straight game without All-Star guard Luka Doncic. With this result the Lakers improved their record to 16-13 as they lie 6th in the Western Conference.
“There was about one second left, and I didn't have anything to do but shoot it,'' said Reaves, who played two seasons each at Wichita State and Oklahoma, signing a two-way contract with the Lakers in August that was converted to a regular contract in September. ''Great pass, and I made a shot.''
''We've got a lot of trust in whoever's on the floor, including the rook,'' James said. ''Obviously, it showed on that last possession.''
''We were going to foul within 10 seconds, make them reset and give us a chance to reset, too,'' said Mavericks coach Jason Kidd, who was a Lakers assistant during the past two seasons. ''And we just didn't get to the foul.''
The other results were:
- Pacers 122 -113 Pistons
- Rockets 103 - 116 Knicks
- Jazz 124 - 103 Clippers
Tomorrow’s fixtures are:
- Magic vs Heat
- Celtics vs Warriors
- Hawks vs Nuggets
- Pelicans vs Bucks
- Jazz vs Spurs
- Timberwolves vs Lakers
- Kings vs Grizzlies
- Trail Blazers vs Hornets
- Pistons vs Rockets
NBA: Lakers beat Celtics and Nets extend their winning run against the Dallas Maverick
(Basketball news) Lakers beat the Boston Celtics 117-102 in the latest chapter of the NBA's most heated rivalry. LeBron James scored 30 points, Westbrook added 24 points and 11 assists, Anthony Davis had 17 points and 16 rebounds for the Lakers, who produced one of their best recent performances in their fourth victory in six games overall. Los Angeles made 56.5% of its shots in the first three quarters and shut down Jayson Tatum's with their defense. For the Celtics Jason Tatum scored 34 points as he scored 14 of his 34 points in an incredible early first-quarter blitz for the Celtics, who dropped to 1-2 on their four-game West Coast trip, Jaylen Brown sat out his third straight game with a strained right hamstring, as Robert Williams III's 13 points for Boston was the second most. With this victory the Lakers improved their record to 13-12 as they moved up to 6th in the Western Conference.
''As a player like myself, you want to make sure you approach all games the same while also understanding the significance of this particular game,'' Westbrook said. ''That makes it a good win for us.''
''I just like the way we competed tonight on both sides of the floor,'' James said. ''We had a lot of intensity, a lot of ball movement. Guys were attacking the rim. I think defensively, besides the first 14-point avalanche on Tatum's part, we locked in from that point forward.''
“I think at the beginning of the year, Russ was a little bit passive,'' Davis said. ''He was trying to get guys involved, pass the ball. ... We told him, 'The more you're aggressive, the more it will open up for everyone else.' The last seven to 10 games, he's been very, very aggressive, and when he does that, it opens up the floor for everyone else as far as shooting. He's just been in attack mode. That's why we brought him here, to be Russell Westbrook and not anybody else but that.''
The Brooklyn Nets defeated the Dallas Mavericks 102-99 as they made a 17 point comeback in the second half. Kevin Durant scored 24 points, Harden had 23 points and 12 assists as they handed the Mavericks their fifth consecutive home loss. For the Mavericks, Luka Doncic scored 28 points but had another rough night from 3-point range, Kristaps Porzingis had 17 points and 12 rebounds. In three games since setting a franchise record by shooting 68.7% in a 32-point victory at New Orleans, Dallas is down to 38% shooting from the arc. With this result the Nets improved their record to 17-7 which is subsequently the best in the Eastern Conference.
''We've been in this league long enough to know it's winning time. It's go time,'' said Harden, who also had nine rebounds. ''Throughout the course of the game, I feel like we got good shots. We just missed them. We just kept sticking with it and kept sticking with it. You've got to just keep shooting, especially if that's what you do.''
''We had a lot of open looks there in the fourth quarter that just didn't go down,'' Dallas coach Jason Kidd said. ''And then Timmy has a wide-open look. You couldn't ask for a better look to tie up the game.''
''It's a character win where you just want to make the right plays to get back in the game and you want to turn the momentum to your side,'' said Durant, who was 10 of 22 from the field and had seven rebounds. ''I think we did that tonight”.
The tomorrow's fixtures are:
- Pistons vs Wizards
- Hornets vs 76ers
- Cavaliers vs Bulls
- Pacers vs Knicks
- Heat vs Bucks
- Raptors vs Thunder
- Grizzlies vs Mavericks
- Timberwolves vs Jazz
- Pelicans vs Nuggets
- Rockets vs Nets
- Kings vs Magic
- Warriors vs Trail Blazers
- Clippers vs Celtics
NBA: The Milwaukee Bucks rally past the Hornets as Dallas Mavericks keeping their winning run intact
(Basketball news) The Milwaukee Bucks rallied past the Charlotte Hornets as they defeated them 127-125. Antetokounmpo had 40 points and 12 rebounds and Khris Middleton added 21 points for the Bucks as Giannis Antetokounmpo scored on a driving layup with two seconds left to give Milwaukee their eighth consecutive victory. For the Hornets, Ball had a career-high 36 points for the Hornets, followed by Kelly Oubre Jr. with 25 and Miles Bridges with 22 points. Ball hit 12 of 22 shots including 8 of 15 from beyond the arc along with nine assists. Milwaukee signed veteran free agent DeMarcus Cousins who played 4 minutes and scored seven points. With this result Bucks improved their record to 14-8 as they are currently 4th in the Eastern Conference with similar records to the Bulls, Wizards and the Heats.
“Giannis is just great. Reading the defense, attack mode,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''Any time we can get him the ball in that type of situation, we feel like he's going to make a good play”.
''I haven't seen the play, but I knew in the position I was in, there were two different routes,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''Float it up or try to sneak it in, and when you try to sneak it in, you've got to spin on. If you just go normal, most likely you're going to get it blocked”.
“People talk about him just being dominant, but on that shot, you can see the skill that he has,'' Middleton said. ''He's not always dunking over people, not always using the jump hook. That's a tough layup even for guards, and he's a 7-footer coming down to end the game. Going over, then under an arm, then flipping it with a little bit of spin off the glass, that just shows you the type of skills he has as a player.''
Dallas Maverick beat the New Orleans Pelican 139-107 as Luka Doncic scored 18 of his team-high 28 points in the first quarter and dished out 14 assists in 27 minutes to power the Dallas Mavericks to convincing victory. Dallas set a franchise record by shooting 57 of 83 from the floor (68.7%), beating the previous high of 67.7% from March 24, 1983. Kristaps Porzingis added 20 points and 10 rebounds for Dallas as they snapped out of their five match losing streak. Doncic went 7 of 8 from the floor in the Mavericks' 41-point first quarter - their highest-scoring period of the season in which they shot 73% from the floor (16 of 22). For the Pelicans, Brandon Ingram scored 29 points as Devonte Graham added 13 points. With this result Dallas improved their record to 11-9 and are currently 4th in the Eastern Conference.
“That's pretty cool,'' Dallas coach Jason Kidd said. ''To break a record like that with so many great offensive teams that the Dallas Mavs have had just shows the carryover and the response that this team has had after the last two outings. I thought everybody touched it. We got wide-open looks, that we've been getting, but they started to go down for us.''
''Luka was phenomenal tonight,'' Porzingis said. ''He started off the game hot himself, and then he was sharing the ball. Our energy was there right from the beginning because we shared it. It was a chain reaction, starting from him, and we got great looks.''
''It was a great game,'' Doncic said. ''We came out with a lot of energy, and I think we moved the ball pretty well. Those shots were open, so we knocked them down.''
The other results were:
- Pacers 111 - 114 Hawks
- Magic 108 - 103 Nuggets
- Wizards 115 - 107 Timberwolves
- Celtics 88 - 87 76ers
- Heat 85 - 111 Cavaliers
- Thunder 110 - 114 Rockets
- Clippers 115 - 124 Kings
The fixtures for tomorrow are:
- Raptors vs Bucks
- Knicks vs Bulls
- Grizzlies vs Thunder
- Suns vs Pistons
- Trail Blazers vs Spurs
NBA: Giannis drops 47 points against Lakers as Warriors continued their astounding start with a victory over the Nets
(Basketball news) The Lakers suffered their eight loss of the season as Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 47 to win 109-102. Khris Middleton came back from COVID 19 and broke the franchise record for the most 3 pointers made, Middleton made three consecutive 3 pointers in the fourth quarter to put the Bucks ahead.The second of those 3s was his 1,051st with the Bucks to match Ray Allen for first place on the team's all-time list. For the Lakers, Talen Horton Tucker scored 25 points, Russell Westbrook had 19 points as Anthony Davis also couldn’t impact the match with his 18 points. LeBron James missed an eighth straight game for the Lakers due to an abdominal strain. The Lakers have gone 3-5 during that stretch. Los Angeles also is missing Trevor Ariza and Kendrick Nunn, who haven't yet appeared in a game this season. With this result, the Bucks improve their record to 7-8 and as for Lakers their record stands at 8-8.
'That's a very, very special place to be,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''I think we all just admire what Khris does every night, his ability to shoot, the different ways he gets 3's and his kind of consistency and longevity here
It's a part of the game,'' said Anthony Davis, who scored 18 points for the Lakers. ''Same thing with the team we just played. They've been hit with injuries as well. It kind of goes with the league, the business of the game. You go out there and put your body on the line every night, God forbid, something is going to happen in the course of a season. Someone's going to get hurt. We've got to adjust and continue to fight until we get everybody back
'I wanted to be the aggressor out there,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''I wanted to initiate the contact, get in the paint, make the right play and just play with an edge out there.''
Warriors continued their fine start to the season with a comprehensive 117-99 victory over the Nets. Curry showed why he’s leading the MVP charts after scoring 37 points, easily winning the matchup between the NBA’s top scorers when Kevin Durant had his worst nights this season. Andrew Wiggins added 19 points as Draymond produced a defensive masterclass over Kevin Durant, he managed only 19, the first time all season he didn't hit 20. He shot 0 for 8 in the decisive third quarter and finished 6 for 19 after sitting the fourth. James Harden scored 24 points as it was not enough for the Warriors to go 12-2 in the NBA, which is the best record in the whole of NBA.
''So it's not the playoffs, but there's an intensity that you have to show up to beat a team like that,'' Curry said. ''You thrive off that competitive atmosphere, knowing that there's a lot of talent on the floor.''
'They got long defenders, guys that can help, so seeing bodies all the time when I had the ball, that's what great defenses do. And then some shots I wish I could've had back,'' Durant said. ''I rushed a few once we got down 15, 20. I'm trying to get it back so fast you end up taking bad shots and rushed shots.''
It was the Phoenix Suns’ 10th straight victory after they beat the in-form Dallas Maverick 105-98, a 37 point outburst helped them secure the victory as it was a shooting slog from the Phoenix Suns. Booker scored 24 points, DeAndre Ayton had 19 points and 13 rebounds as last year’s finalist went on their longest winning streak since 2009-10. The Mavericks were playing their first game this season without star guard Luka Doncic, who suffered sprains to his left knee and ankle in the waning moments of a victory over Denver on Monday. Even without their star they almost won the fixture as Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 22 points, Kristaps Porzingis added 21 and Jalen Brunson had 18. With this victory the Suns improved their record to 11-3 as they stand 2nd in the Western Conference.
We didn't shoot a great number tonight but when we needed it, guys just stepped up,'' coach Monty Williams said. ''We have the mentality of, `Let it fly.'
That wasn't the play,'' Booker said with a grin. ''But we made it work. That's the name of the game, figuring out a way
The guys played hard, gave us a chance to win on the road against the Western Conference champs, who also have won nine in a row,'' Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said. ''Everyone in that locker room executed the game plan. We just missed some shots down the stretch and they didn't.''
The other results were:
- Jazz 120 - 85 76ers
- Clippers 106 - 92 Spurs
- Pistons 97 - 86 Pacers
- Hornets 97 - Wizards
- Hawks 110 - 99 Celtics
- Heat 79 - 70 Pelicans
- Trail Blazers 112 - 107 Bulls
The fixtures for tomorrow are:
- Heat vs Wizards
- Cavaliers vs Warriors
- Timberwolves vs Spurs
- Grizzlies vs Clippers
- Nuggets vs 76ers
- Jazz vs Raptors
NBA: Lakers lose to the spirited Bulls as Washington Wizards continued their fine form with a victory over the Pelicans
(Basketball news) Lakers continued their poor form as they suffered their seventh loss of the season, DeMar DeRozan scored a season-high 38 points and Zach LaVine had added 26 in the Chicago Bulls' 121-103 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers. Former Laker Lonzo Ball put in a statement performance with a season high 27 points, 7 rebounds and 8 assists as the promising Bulls made it four wins out of five. For the Lakers, Talen Horton Tucker had a career high scoring 28 points against his hometown team, Anthony Davis scored 20 points before getting ejected in the third quarter after an altercation with the referee, Westbrook scored 25 out of which he scored 19 points in the first half. For the Lakers, who wrapped up a five-game, eight-day homestand with three narrow wins and two embarrassing defeats.
With this result the Bulls improve their record to 10-4 and occupy the second position in the Eastern Conference, for the Lakers their record stands at 8-7, currently in 7th place in the Western Conference. Ball said,” I think we are one of the top teams in the NBA. We've still got a lot to improve on and a long way to go, but I think we're moving in the right direction.''
“Every night you've got to find some type of extra motivation, We've got a couple of guys that played here, (others who are) from here. Just having that extra juice, that energy to go out there and compete, is always beneficial”. said DeRozan.
Talen Horton-Tucker, who had a career-high 28 points said, “Coming out with (James) out, you always know you've got to play hard and make up the slack for a big piece of our team,''against his hometown team. We've all got to bring our games up to another level”
The Washington Wizards continued their fine start to the season as they 105-100 against the Pelicans, with this victory it also meant that the Wizards extended their best start in 47 years. Spencer Dinwiddie scored 19 of his 27 points in the second half, and the Wizards erased a 19-point deficit to beat the New Orleans Pelicans for their fifth consecutive victory, The Wizards were without Bradley Beal, who missed a second consecutive game mourning the death of his grandmother but without Beal they are 3-0 this season. With this result the Wizards improve their record to 10-3 and lead the Eastern Conference also.
We never want to be without Brad. 'No one wants to be without their best player. But the fact that we can withstand some stretches is great.'' said first-year coach Wes Unseld Jr
We just woke up - I think we flipped a switch,'' said forward Deni Avdija, who scored 11 and contained New Orleans' Brandon Ingram in the fourth quarter. ''When we play together and we have that right energy, it's very hard to stop us.''
The Dallas Mavericks slowly but steadily are going about their business with a 111-101 victory over the Denver Nuggets. Kristaps Porzingis had 29 points and 11 rebounds and Tim Hardway scored 13 of his 19 points in the fourth quarter and the Dallas Mavericks rallied behind a small-ball lineup to get their fifth victory in six games. Luka Doncic added 23 points and 11 assists and Jalen Brunson added 17 points off the bench to rally them to a well deserved victory. For the Nuggets Nikola Jokic tried his best to get a victory as he scored a season high 35 points and 16 rebounds which had their five match winning run snapped. With this result the Mavericks improve their record to 9-4 as they stand 3rd in the Western Conference
''We felt that was a lineup that could get going, give us some energy, some physicality,'' Kidd said. ''And that's what they brought
'I think it was funky,'' Hardaway said. ''We knew going into the fourth we wanted to get the pace going real high.''.
The other results were:
- Cavaliers 92 - 98 Celtics
- Knicks 92 - Pacers
- Hawks 129 - 111 Magic
- Thunder 90 - 103 Heat
- Timberwolves 96 - 99 Suns
- Trail Blazers 118 - 113 Raptors
- Grizzlies 136 - 102 Rockets
Tomorrow's fixtures are:
- Nets vs Warriors
- Jazz vs 76 ers
- Clippers vs Spurs
NBA: Last years finalist Phoenix Suns lose to Denver Nuggets as both the Bulls and Knicks win
(Basketball news) The match between the Suns and Nuggets was a story of two halves, ultimately the Denver Nuggets came out on top as they used lockdown defence and clutch 3 point shots to start off their campaign with a 110-98 victory. Last year's MVP Nikola Jokic started off the campaign with 27 points and 13 rebounds on 13 of 22 shooting from the field as he was too much for the Suns defence to handle, on the other hand Mikal Bridges top scored with 16 points as Chris Paul and co couldn’t get themselves in a groove in the second half
Knicks edged out Celtics 138-134 after playing two overtimes, in what was an enthralling game between these two historical franchises. Evan Fournier in his first match for the New York Knicks scored a career high with 32 points and also hit the game winning three pointer with 56 seconds left in the second overtime. Earlier Jaylen Brown scored 46 points to inspire his team to make a comeback in the fourth quarter as they were down by 11 points, subsequently Brown broke the franchise record for the highest number of points scored on the opening night but ultimately his efforts went in vain as they lost by 4 points in the end. Last year’s most improved player Julius Randle top scored for the Knicks with 35 points, 9 assist and 8 rebounds to help inspire them to a historic victory.
The Chicago Bulls won 94-88 against the Detroit Pistons, this season the Bulls have made significant changes to their roster adding the likes of DeMar DeRozan and Lonzo Ball. These players made their debut and did not disappoint as they scored 17 and 12 points respectively but all the headlines were grabbed by their franchise cornerstone for years Zach Lavine who top scored with 34 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assist. Jerami Grant did his best to inspire a comeback but his 24 points wasn’t enough for them as the Bulls defeated the Pistons for the eight consecutive time.
In tomorrow's matches, the two next generation superstars Trae Young and Luka Doncic go head to head as Hawks take on the Mavericks. Last year's surprise package Hawks will be looking to continue from where they left off from last season as they made it to the Eastern Conference finals under coach Nate McMillan in his first full season. For the Mavericks they will be heading into a new era as coach Rick Carlisle will not be in there for the first time since the 2007-08 season as they have appointed former Dallas player Jason Kidd as their new head coach.
The Miami Heat will play their first match against defending champions Milwaukee Bucks. The Heat will have a renewed vigour and passion to make this year's final after a disappointing season last year, this season Miami have added some extra firepower in the form of former NBA champion Kyle Lowry and also Victor Oldapio who was added to their roster last season will come back from a recurring injury. Miami mainstays Jimmy Butler and along with Bam Adebayo will be hoping that they inspire them to go all the way and win a NBA championship together. This season the Heats have been portrayed as the dark horse for the Championship by the former players and experts.
Last year's Western Conference Finalist LA Clippers will take on Steph Curry’s Golden State Warriors. The Warriors are coming off good form after beating the Lakers and will hope to repeat the same against their city rivals. For Clippers, the task in hand will be difficult as their talisman Kawhi Leonard will be out for quite some time as he suffered an ACL injury in the Western Conference Finals. All the onus will be on Paul George to lead the franchise before Kawhi Leonard comes back.
The other significant results were:
- Trail Blazers 121 - 124 Kings
- Jazz 107 - 86 Thunder
- Spurs 123 - 97 Magic
- Grizzlies 132 - 121 Cavaliers
- Pelicans 97 - 117 76ers
- Raptors 83 - 98 Wizards
- Hornets 123 - 122 Pacers
- Timberwolves 124 - 106 Rockets
Everything to know about the 75th NBA season as Lakers and Nets start as favourites for the Championship
(Basketball news) The 75th NBA season is starting with the new trend of super teams in fashion as the likes of Lakers and Nets just added more superstars to become outright favourites to go all the way to the final. This year, teams will be back to playing a full 82 game season with full capacity stadiums as 30 teams will be participating, divided into the Western and Eastern Conferences.
A lot of historical records can be broken this season as Golden State Warriors star player Stephen Curry is set to become NBA’s all time leading three point shooter, he needs only 143 threes to overtake the legendary Ray Allen. Gregg Popvich, the manager of San Antonio Spurs begins his 26th year as a coach, needing only 26 wins to pass Don Nelson for the most victories in NBA history. LeBron James keeps on breaking records as he is going to start in his 19th season, with a total of 35,367 points as he's on the cusp of breaking Karl Malone (36,928) to become the second highest scorer in NBA history.
The Eastern Conference this season is packed with talent and will be an interesting watch to see how teams will adjust to their relatively new roster. Last season's champions Milwaukee Bucks will again win the Conference as well as the Championship this season but their task won't be easy especially teams like Brooklyn Nets, Philadelphia 76ers and Miami Heat all having improved significantly this season. Some of the dark horses from last year like the Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks also added all star calibre players in their roster to make the Eastern Conference even more competitive than last season.
The Western Conference was full of surprises last season as the Phoenix Suns made the NBA playoffs after 11 years and shocked everyone when they reached the finals. This gives an indication on how tough the Eastern Conference is, at least 12 teams are eyeing the 8 spots in the NBA playoffs. This season again Lakers will be favourites to come out of the Western Conference as they probably have the best roster on paper but the likes of LA Clippers, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, Portland Trailblazers, Dallas Mavericks can cause an upset and go to the NBA final. The unpredictability and the world class players present in the Western Conference tends to be more in the limelight and this season with each roster stacked the competition is going to be tougher.
The race for this year's MVP will be an intriguing watch as last year's winner Nikola Jokic will be looking to make it 4 consecutive MVPs for players from Europe. The likes of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Steph Curry and LeBron James will all be looking to retain the trophy this season. Some new aged superstars like Luka Doncic, Trae Young and Ja Morant can also be in the MVP reckoning as they have consistently been their franchise cornerstone in the recent years.
The 75th NBA season tips off tomorrow with two mouthwatering fixtures between Brooklyn Nets vs Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers vs Golden State Warriors at 5 am and 7.30 am respectively. The two championship favourites will battle it out with two former champions is quite a first day matchup for basketball fans. Brooklyn Nets arguably have the best offensive players in Kevin Durant and James Harden in their ranks and will be looking to avenge their loss they had in the Eastern Conference final last season. For the Milwaukee Bucks, their roster remains the same and will be looking to repeat last year's feat by beating the mighty Brooklyn Nets as Ginnas and Khris Middleton will be the key players to look out for if they are to cause an upset.
The LA Lakers are coming off a pretty terrible preseason having lost all their six matches as they will be looking to start the season fresh with their new big three of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook who will be playing for the first time together against the Golden State Warriors. As for GSW all eyes will be on Steph Curry as he will have to wait 2 or more months for his partner in crime Klay Thompson to return to the court after a 2 year long injury. Lakers have mostly got their 2020 winning squad back as LeBron looks to equal Michaell Jordan's six championship rings.