Kyrie decides to exercise $37 million option to stay with the Nets
(Basketball news) Kyrie Irving has decided to exercise his $36.9 million option in his four contract next season and will remain with the Brooklyn Nets for the time being after being linked to join the Los Angeles Lakers in a sign in trade. The seven-time All-Star averaged 27.4 points and 5.8 assists this past season for the Nets, with whom he has already spent the last three seasons. He's about to enter the final season in a four-year of his major $137 million deal with Brooklyn.
Irving had until Wednesday to inform the Nets about his decision but he ultimately opted to stay and take the money. For the time being it closes one element of the ongoing saga regarding his future, which has been one of the biggest stories as the league prepares for Free Agency on Thursday. However, he may not be a free agent but Irving could still have his contract extended before free agency begins. The Nets could still trade him and in fact, many teams might be more interested in a deal now since Irving is on an expiring contract.
He only appeared in 29 regular-season games this past season, largely because of his decision to not be vaccinated. That made him ineligible to play in Brooklyn, until he was allotted an exemption to the New York City's vaccine protocols. Irving, after the Nets were swept by Boston in the first round, said that he planned on remaining in Brooklyn. He even talked about him and Kevin Durant managing the franchise along with general manager Sean Marks and owner Joe Tsai. Marks later made it clear about Irving's future as they would have to involve discussions about being more available to the team, and he also added that he could not come to an agreement on a long-term extension that could have seen Irving paid an additional $185 million over four years.
Last season the Nets looked on track to reach their first Conference Finals before Irving sprained his ankle in Game 4 of the East semifinals against the Milwaukee Bucks, who rallied on and went on to win the series in seven games. The Nets returned this past season thinking that their title core of Irving, Durant and James Harden might go on to win the NBA Championship but it didn't work out anywhere near as planned. Irving wasn't with the team for the majority of the season and Harden ultimately got traded to Philadelphia. The Nets needed to play the play-in tournament just to make the playoffs, and Nets then got humiliated by the eventual Eastern Conference champions, Celtics.
Durant and Irving have always been close friends as they came to the Nets together in July 2019. Durant signed his extension last summer, but Irving did not. Durant is also thinking about his future at Brooklyn but with Irving back in the mix, and with Ben Simmons, who hasn’t played at all this season is now set to team up alongside Irving and Durant this coming season, Brooklyn could quickly return to contender status if these three superstars can figure out a way to play. Or else both Kevin Durnat and Kyrie Irving will hand in trade requests.
NBA: Lakers appoint Darwin Ham as the new head coach
(Basketball news) It looks like the Los Angeles Lakers have found their next head coach in former Milwaukee Bucks assistant coach Darvin Ham. It has been reported that the two parties have agreed to a four-year deal.The Lakers fired Frank Vogel last season after a miserable 33-49 run for the team in which they failed to make the playoffs. Vogel spent three seasons as the head coach and guided them to the NBA title in 2020 inside the Orlando bubble. Darvin Ham has now been assigned with the work to turn around their fortunes and make them title contenders again
The 48-year-old does not have any prior head coaching experience but has plenty of experience in the league having been an NBA assistant coach for the past 11 seasons, including two seasons with the Lakers in 2011 and 2013. He was with the defending champions Bucks from 2018 but ultimately left them to take the head coach job for the Lakers. Darvin Ham and the Lakers have plenty of problems in a number of different ways including figuring out how to get the best out of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Rusell Westbrook that is if Rob Pelinka decides to trade him. The trio have failed to live up to the hype as Lebron and Davis spent most of the time on the treatment table.
James this season only played in 56 of the Lakers’ 82 games, while Davis played just 40 in another season where he has been plagued with injuries. The Lakers also do not have a Draft pick in next month’s NBA Draft. They had traded their first-round pick to the New Orleans Pelicans in the deal which saw Davis become a Laker; their second-round pick also belongs to the San Antonio Spurs. Darvis Ham now has to sort all of these problems out as the Lakers have better aspirations than making the play-off games given they have previously won 17 NBA titles, 19 conference titles, and 33 division titles.
Ham was a player himself, having played eight seasons in the NBA. He made his debut with the Denver Nuggets in the 1996-97 season after he went undrafted in the NBA draft. He averaged 2.7 points and 2.3 rebounds in 417 career games for the Nuggets, Indiana Pacers, Washington Wizards, Bucks, Atlanta Hawks, and Detroit Pistons.
Ham, 48, in his press conference went on to explain that he once got shot in the face by a stray bullet when he was 14-years-old. He said "I grew up in Saginaw, Michigan," Ham said. "I was shot in the face by accident, April 5, 1988. You go through something like that, it's going to do one of two things: It's going to make you fearful or fearless. It made me fearless. I don't feel any pressure. It's basketball."
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: Bucks take the lead in the series, Grizzlies thump the Warriors
(Basketball news) The Milwaukee Bucks bounced back in emphatic fashion to take the series lead as they beat the Boston Celtics 110-107. For the Bucks, Antetokounmpo had 40 points and 11 rebounds, making 16 of 27 shots as Holiday finished with 24 points, eight rebounds and eight assists and Portis added 14 points and 15 rebounds. For the Celtics, Jayson Tatum scored 34 points and Jaylen Brown had 26. The Bucks trailed Boston by 14 points in a game that could send the defending NBA champions to the brink of elimination but they played some brilliant basketball to take the lead in the series, that's when Jrue Holiday why he was in the top 3 of the Defensive Player of the year. The defending champions are a game away from reaching their second consecutive Eastern Conference final.
''Obviously, in Boston you're down 14 in the fourth quarter, people would say everything's against us. But we came together,'' said Holiday, who also hit the tying 3-pointer with 43 seconds left. ''We live and die like that.''
''Just a great instinctive play by Jrue,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''He's a winner. Jrue Holiday's a winner. You ask any player in this league or any coach in this league. He's a winner.''
'If we box out we win that game,'' Smart said. ''They're the defending champs. They made some championship plays. And now we've got to bounce back.''
''Of course, we're gonna be down. Guys are going to be (upset) about the outcome. We outplayed them for 3 1/2 quarters,'' Celtics coach Ime Udoka said. ''We talked about showing our resolve, and we made it tougher on ourselves now. It'll make it sweeter when we bounce back. But we gave up a golden opportunity tonight.''
The Memphis Grizzlies produced an emphatic win to stay alive in the series as they beat the Golden State Warriors 134-94. For the Grizzlies, Dillon Brooks added 12 points for Memphis. Ziaire Williams and Brandon Clarke had 11 apiece and De'Anthony Melton 10. Steven Adams had 13 rebounds, six offensive as Memphis outscored Golden State 24-5 on second-chance points. For the Warriors, Klay Thompson led the scoring with 19 points, Jonathan Kuminga added 17, Curry had 14 and Damion Lee and Moses Moody each had 10. Memphis created history when they scored 77 points in the first half, the most in franchise postseason history. blowouts in NBA history. With this win the Warriors still lead the series 3-2 and again will have the chance to wrap the series on 13th May.
''We've exceeded expectations ever since I've been here,'' Bane said. ''It almost seems like whenever someone thinks we can't do something, we end up doing it. So I never want to put a limit on this team on what we can do because anything's possible.''
'We knew what was at stake,'' Jackson said. ''We didn't change anything, though. We just calmed down, looked at the film, understand what we had to take away from the last game and just went out there and executed.''
''Obviously, this was a very impressive win for our group, great bounce-back for sure,'' Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said.
''When you spew it out, you've got to be willing to take it and not hide from it and not duck from it and not hide from it. Embrace it,'' Green said. ''So, I appreciated the crowd tonight and the energy they brought to the game. If they want to whoop that trick, we're going to whoop it together.''
NBA: Celtics level the series and Warriors win against the Grizzlies
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics leveled the series as they beat the Milwaukee Bucks 116-108. For the Celtics, Horford and Jayson Tatum scored 30 points. Horford had 16 points and Tatum 12 in the fourth quarter alone to help the Celtics outscore the defending NBA champions 43-28. Both Jaylen Brown and defensive player of the year Marcus Smart had 18 points each. For the Bucks, Antetokounmpo had 34 points, 18 rebounds and five assists as Jrue Holiday scored 16 points but shot 5 of 22. With this result, game 5 becomes very important as both the teams head to Milwaukee on 11th May.
''I usually just kind of go about my business,'' said Horford, who finished with a career playoff-high 30 points. ''I do get excited, but I guess you kind of pick your spots, your moments. This was an emotional game.''
“We love Al,'' said Boston's Marcus Smart. ''Best vet we've ever had. Best vet I've ever had. He comes in, never changes whether things are going bad or good. He's going to be him, and nine times out of 10, it's going to work out in our favor.''
''I played a terrible Game 3 and we almost had a chance to win,'' Tatum said. ''That was really the toughest part, was knowing that. I was really eager to get back and ready to play.''
''I don't really know what he said to me, but the way he was looking at me and the way he was going about it, really didn't sit well with me,'' Horford said. ''At that point, I think something switched with me in the game.''
''We all understood the importance of this game,'' Horford said. ''We felt at the end of Game 3 we were in position to win the game, and we didn't. I was just really locked in. I understood at that moment what we needed to do as a group. I really just did whatever it took tonight. It was one of those types of nights.''
''Down the stretch, they made shots,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''They executed well. They were disciplined.''
The Golden State Warriors are one game away from reaching the Western Conference finals as they beat the Memphis Grizzlies 101-98. For the Warriors, Curry converted eight free throws over the final 45.7 seconds on the way to 32 points as Poole scored 14 off the bench, Andrew Wiggins added 17 points in a well fought victory for them. For the Grizzlies, Tyus Jones had 19 points, six rebounds and five assists as they missed injured All-Star Ja Morant, Dillon Brooks returned from a one-game suspension and struggled mightily, missing a 3-point try with 53 seconds left and finishing 5 for 19 with 12 points, eight assists and five rebounds as Jaren Jackson top scored with 21 points. With this result, the Warriors take a 3-1 lead and have a chance to seal the series on 11th May.
''Obviously there's butterflies, because again you're going into the game with a certain mindset and it's a big game. Every game that we play at this point in the year, it's huge,'' said Brown, who agreed Sunday to become the Sacramento Kings' new coach after this postseason run.
''So to have that kind of thrown at you, you've got to switch gears because I know what my responsibilities are going in as Mike Brown the assistant coach, and it changes.'
''His head coaching record for a Warrior playoff game I think is undefeated,'' Klay Thompson said. ''We did miss Steve a lot, just his voice, his presence, but we've been here before, 2017 when Mike took over and we rolled off a lot of wins, so I reflected on that a lot.''
''Nothing we figured out, it was just don't let the first three quarters influence the fact that we still had a chance to win the game,'' Curry said. ''Shoot the shots you think you can make, play aggressively, and take care of the ball. We did all of those things.''
''It's a tough one. It's a tough pill to swallow. It felt like we were leading the whole game,'' Jones said. ''It felt like we were in a good position. It felt like we put ourselves in a good position to win a ballgame and things didn't go our way down the stretch.''
''He forced a couple. Trying to get his groove back,'' Jenkins said. ''Obviously he's been off for a couple of days. But when he was playing with force under control, I loved the playmaking that he had.''
NBA: Celtics make a comeback in game 2, Grizzlies beat the Warriors
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics made a comeback in game 2 as they beat the Milwaukee Bucks 109-86. For the Celtics, Brown scored 25 of his 30 points in the first half as Jayson Tatum added 19 points and eight assists. Grant Williams finished with 21 points. Al Horford had 14 points and 11 rebounds. For the Bucks, Jrue Holiday added 19 points and seven assists. Bobby Portis chipped in 13 points and eight rebounds as Giannis Antetokounmpo top scored with 28 points. With this result the series is nicely poised at 1-1 as the next game will be on the 7th in Boston.
''It's the playoffs. That's it,'' Brown said. ''We can't let one game kind of dictate how this series goes. We wanted to be aggressive from the gate.''
''We wanted to come and play like our season was on the line and we did,'' Brown said
''We wanted to match their physicality and punch back tonight,'' Celtics coach Ime Udoka said. ''A big message was show them who we are.''
''The ship's got to keep going. Everybody got to do a little bit more,'' Tatum said.
''Strong bodies, being active, being physical -- that's pretty much it,'' he said. ''It's gotten tougher to find your teammates.''Antetokounmpo said
'It's not Wilt Chamberlain down there (in the paint),'' Udoka said. ''We can get downhill and attack.''
The Memphis Grizzlies also made a comeback in game 2 as they beat the Golden State Warriors 106-101. For the Grizzlies, Morant scored 47 points to match his postseason high as Ziaire William hit four 3s and finished with 14 points off the bench. Jaren Jackson Jr. scored 12 points and Brandon Clarke added 10 points. For the Warriors, Stephen Curry finished with 27 points on 3-of-11 shooting outside the arc. Jordan Poole added 20 off the bench but was 1 of 6 from 3. Andrew Wiggins had 16, going 1 of 7 from 3. Klay Thompson finished with 12 points and was 2 of 12 from 3. The Warriors shot just 7 of 38 from 3-point range.
''That loss was on my mind a lot, obviously missing that layup late,'' Morant said of his miss at the end of Game 1. ''But coming into today, I told myself we needed a win, and we were going to get a win. I just took it upon myself to go out there and do that for us.''
''It's not just the plays,'' Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said. ''It's just the force that he plays with, the spirit that he plays with. It's infectious. I've said it since day one. Like, you know he's going to be built for moments like this, and this is super impressive''
''Ja is a very great player,'' Clarke said.
Also read: NBA: Heats overcome the Sixers as Mavs lose to the Suns
NBA: Warriors prevail to the next round as the Bucks overcome the Bulls
(Basketball news) The Golden State Warriors progressed to the next round after they won the series 4-1 when they defeated the Denver Nuggets 102-98 in game 5. For the Warriors, Curry scored 30 points in his return to the starting five as Draymond Green had 11 points and six assists. Klay Thompson and Gary Payton added 15 points. For the Nuggets, Jokic scored 12 of his 30 points in the final 3:46 and finished with 19 rebounds and eight assists as DeMarcus Cousins contributed 19 points off the bench against his former Golden State team, and Aaron Gordon added 15 points and nine rebounds. With this result the Warriors progressed to the semifinals where they will face the winners of Grizzlies vs Timberwolves.
''Tonight was just a weird feeling because we hadn't been there in a while,'' said Curry, last season's NBA scoring champion. ''We wanted it so bad, it kind of made it a lot more difficult on ourselves. But we still remember how to do it, which is a good feeling.''
''I was a witness, letting him cook and creating plays for him. Try to get him open looks and after that, you know what he does,'' Warriors guard Gary Payton II said.
''He was incredible, both ends of the floor, big shots, big plays,'' teammate Draymond Green said.
''That guy is a warrior. I just don't understand the people that find a way to criticize Nikola Jokic. Is he perfect? No, I'm not saying he is,'' Nuggets coach Michael Malone said. ''But the guy is the definition of a warrior - competitive, consistent. He impacts the game in so many ways. Hell of a season. Hopefully he'll win the MVP again. I think rightfully he deserves it.''He's our leader, our longest-tenured player, our MVP,'' Thompson said of his Splash Brother, ''and without him, life is difficult. Steph Curry is one of a kind, and will continue to do the spectacular and make it look effortless.''
''He's our leader, our longest-tenured player, our MVP,'' Thompson said of his Splash Brother, ''and without him, life is difficult. Steph Curry is one of a kind, and will continue to do the spectacular and make it look effortless.''
The Milwaukee Bucks progressed to the next round as they beat the Chicago Bulls 116-110 and took the series 4-1. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo had 33 points and nine rebounds as Pat Connaughton went 6 of 9 on 3-point attempts and scored 20 points, Bobby Portis added 14 points and a career-high 17 rebounds. For the Bulls, DeRozan was held to 11 points while shooting 5 of 10 as Patrick Williams scored 23 points, Nikola Vucevic 19 and Coby White 17 for the Bulls. Vucevic also had 16 rebounds and six assists. With this result the Bucks now face the in-form Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference semifinal playoffs.
“After Game 2, we kind of talked about how we knew what the deal was,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''The team knew what the deal was. We knew what we had to do. We had to be desperate. We had to go out there and compete at a high level, pay attention to detail as much as possible, and help one another defensively. We've got to do it as a team.''
''We've been talking about the depth of the roster, the quality of the roster a lot this season,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''Other guys have gotten opportunities and played well. Our defense has tightened up, and we've learned hard from these three games. We've got depth. We've got a good group.''
''This was a lot of our guys' first rodeo, just understanding what it's like to compete in a playoff series,'' Chicago's DeMar DeRozan said. ''There's so much you can learn from that experience, especially going against the defending champs.''
''It was pretty obvious they were going to load up on DeMar,'' Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. ''I thought he played a great game. I thought he generated good shots. He didn't have a high assist total because we really didn't shoot the ball particularly well, but he would have had an enormous amount of assists if we had shot the ball better.''
NBA: Celtics win again while Bulls make a comeback against the Bucks
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics took a 2-0 lead in the playoff series as they beat the Brooklyn Nets 114-107. For the Celtics, Jaylen Brown scored 22 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter as Jayson Tatum added 19 points for Boston, which held Durant without a basket in the second half. Al Horford had 16 points, Daniel Theis scored 15 and Payton Pritchard had eight of his 10 in the final period. For the Nets, Durant finished with 27 points but struggled from the field for the second straight game, shooting 4 of 17 as Irving had just 10 points on 4-of-13 shooting a day after being fined $50,000 for directing obscene gestures and profane language. Bruce Brown finished with 23 points and Seth Curry added 16. With this result the Celtics will travel to Brooklyn to face the Nets twice in the Barclays Arena.
''This was old-fashioned. old-school playoff game,'' Tatum said. ''You just have to grind it out. That's what we did... we just just stuck with it. Proud of the guys and how we kept responding all game.''
“They're doing a good job trying to cut off my scoring, limit my shot making,'' Durant said. ''It's on me to figure it out.''
''They took the lead and they never looked back in that fourth quarter,'' Irving said. ''We don't really have time to be disappointed, to hold our heads. This is part of playoff basketball.''
“I think we did that,'' Udoka said. ''We want to make him work defensively and offensively, have bodies on him the whole time and try to wear him down.''
''I think our intensity dropped a little bit in the second half. We also didn't convert,'' Nets coach Steve Nash said. ''We had opportunities, we didn't convert.''
The Chicago Bulls made a staggering comeback against the third seed Milwaukee Bucks as they beat them 114-110. For the Bulls, DeRozan scored a career playoff-high 41 points as Nikola Vucevic added 24 points and 13 rebounds, while Zach LaVine had 20 points as the sixth-seeded Bulls beat the third-seeded Bucks for just the second time in their last 19 meetings. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo led the scoring with 33 points, 18 rebounds and nine assists. Antetokounmpo increased his career postseason point total to 1,715 to overtake Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1,692) for the most in Bucks history as Brook Lopez had 25 points for the Bucks. Middleton scored 18 and Holiday 15. With this result the Bucks travel to Chicago for two games as the series is finally poised at 1-1.
''No matter what you did in the regular season, this is a brand new start and new mindset,'' DeRozan said. ''You could see it in all the guys. It doesn't matter if we've lost 20 times to those guys. This is an opportunity for us to compete. We've got to take advantage of it.''
''He's always been positive and he knows the type of team that we are and how resilient we are,'' Bucks guard Jrue Holiday said. ''We just want him to get back as quickly as possible and be healthy so he can come out here and help us win games.''
''We expected those guys to make a run,'' Vucevic said. ''They're a championship team for a reason. They've been there before, so we expected them to make a run.''
''I do think that playing some of these higher-level teams at the end of the year has maybe kind of hardened us, helped us grow,'' Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. ''It's helped us get better. It's helped us be able to have that kind of mentality that we've got to move on to the next play. I think at times this year when we played against good teams, when it started to go a little bit the other direction, we didn't have enough in us to get it back going in our direction.''
The Philadelphia 76ers have one step in the second round of the playoffs after their overtime 104-101 victory over the Toronto Raptors. For the Sixers, Embiid made a 3-pointer with 0.8 seconds left in overtime to give the 76ers their third straight victory as he scored 33 points and 13 rebounds. James Harden had 19 points and 10 assists before fouling out in the closing seconds of regulation as Tyrese Maxey scored 19 points and Tobias Harris had 11 points and 12 rebounds. For the Raptors, Anunoby scored 26 points, Gary Trent Jr. had a playoff-high 24, and Precious Achiuwa had 20 as Pascal Siakam and VanVleet each had 12 points. VanVleet shot 3 for 13, going 2 for 10 from 3-point range. Now the Sixers have a chance to wrap the series on Saturday in Toronto after taking a 3-0 lead in the series.
“Great play call,'' Embiid said. ''Tobias set an amazing screen, Danny threw a great pass. All I had to do was finish, and I'm glad I did.
''For him, that's a high-percentage shot, especially on that wing,'' Harris said of Embiid's decisive basket. ''We got the ball to our best player, somebody who makes plays, makes shots.''
''We've been watching his skill set all year long and how great he's been,'' Harden said. ''Tonight was no different. He did all the right things, and when it was time for him to finish the game off, he did that.''
''There's no room to look around and feel sorry for ourselves,'' VanVleet said. ''We did a lot of good things tonight, we played a lot of minutes of great basketball and we're going to have to do it again.''
NBA: Celtics win the first match as Suns prevail over the Pelicans
(Basketball news) The Boston Celtics won their first match 115 - 114 against the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the NBA playoffs. For the Celtics, Tatum scored 31 points, the last two on the first buzzer-beater of his career as it was Boston's first buzzer beater in the postseason since Paul Pierce in 2010 against the Heat. Brown added 23 points as Horford had 20 points and 15 rebounds, and Smart finished with 20 points, including four 3-pointers. For the Nets, Kyrie Irving finished with 39 points, including 18 in the fourth quarter as Durant added 23 points but shot just 9 of 24. With this result the Celtics take a 1-0 lead in the series as they play their next match on Wednesday.
''When he took that dribble we just kind of made eye contact. He made a great pass,'' Tatum said. ''It doesn't get any better than that. A buzzer-beater in a playoff game at home.''
I've always been told you have more time than you realise you have,'' Smart said. ''I was about to throw it to Al (Horford) off the dribble and I saw JT cut at the last minute.''
''I think that's kind of a microcosm for our season, guys moving the ball being unselfish,'' coach Ime Udoka said.
“They did a good job of forcing me away, then helping in the paint. I just got to be more fundamental in my moves,'' said Durant . ''I feel like some shots went in and out for me.''
The top seed in the Western Conference, the Phoenix Suns made easy work of the New Orleans Pelicans as they won 110-99. For the Suns, Paul scored 19 of his 30 points during a brilliant fourth-quarter scoring display as Deandre Ayton was particularly dominant on the defensive end with four blocks, and had 21 points and nine rebounds and Booker finished with 25 points. For the Pelicans, CJ McCollum led the scoring with 25 points, but struggled with his shooting much of the night as he finished 9 of 25 from the field. Valanciunas added 18 points and 25 rebounds as Brandon Ingram scored 18 points. With this result the Suns take the lead in the series as they play their second in Phoenix tomorrow.
''Classic Chris,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said.
''It's just reading the game,'' Paul said. ''We watch games all day, every day. We got to watch all the games yesterday. We watched the games today. We know in the playoffs, teams aren't going to lay down.''
''That man's a true competitor, a true winner,'' Suns guard Devin Booker said. ''He wants it that bad. You can see it in his demeanour, you can see it in his walk. It shouldn't surprise anybody. He's built for these moments.''
''We figured out a way to play,'' Pelicans forward Larry Nance Jr. said. ''This is the playoffs and there are going to be ebbs and flows, ups and downs. We are in a chess match now.''
The Milwaukee Bucks started their title defence in emphatic fashion as they won 93-86 against the Chicago Bulls. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo had 27 points and 16 rebounds as Brook Lopez scored 18 points, Holiday had 15, Khris Middleton had 11 and Bobby Portis added 10. Portis also had 12 rebounds. For the Bulls, DeMar DeRozan scored 18 points but shot 6 of 25 as Vucevic had 24 points and 17 rebounds but shot 9 of 27. LaVine had 18 points and 10 rebounds while shooting 6 of 19. With this result the Bucks took a 1-0 lead in the series as they both will face each other on Wednesday in Milwaukee.
''We've got to win the ugly games,'' said Jrue Holiday, whose 3-pointer with 5:03 left put the Bucks ahead for good. ''I feel like today was ugly. It was a battle and it was tough, but it was an ugly one.''
''I thought it was a good shot,'' LaVine said. ''We were down three. I got a really clean look.''
''Every shot I took tonight felt good,'' said DeMar DeRozan, ''I guarantee you that me, Zach and Vooch (Nikola Vucevic) aren't going to miss that many shots again.''
''The whole team was kind of out of rhythm,'' said Antetokounmpo, who didn't score in the fourth quarter while dealing with foul trouble. ''We weren't able to find one another as easy as we usually find one another and make shots. We missed a bunch of open shots today. Usually we make those and we get energy.''
NBA: Nuggets sealed the last playoff place as Bucks beat the Celtics
(Basketball news) Denver Nuggets sealed the last playoff place as they beat the Memphis Grizzlies 122-109. For the Nuggets, Jokic became the first player in NBA history with 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 500 assists in a season as he finished the night with 35 points, 16 rebounds, six assists and five steals and Aaron Gordon added 22 points. For the Grizzlies, Desmond Bane had 14 points as both Dillon Brooks and Zaire Williams finished with 12 points each. With this result, the Denver Nuggets clinched a fourth consecutive playoff berth as their current record stands at 48-33 and clinched the last playoff berth in 6th in the Western Conference standings.
“Dude is really great at basketball,'' teammate Bones Hyland said
''The MVP isn't even a competition,'' Nuggets coach Michael Malone declared afterward. ''There's other great players. I'm not saying they're not great players. But what Nikola Jokic has done this year - with this team - everything we've had to go through, is just incredible.
''I think we've been playing good basketball, even the other night against Utah. Tonight, we just didn't have it,'' Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins said.
''We threw a lot at him,'' Jenkins said. ''He's the MVP for a reason. He's nearly impossible to guard. He's going to beat you from inside, outside, playmaking. He played at a really high level tonight.''
''My first thought was Steve Nash in that playoff series and they couldn't stop the bleeding,'' Malone said. ''And I'm saying, `Of all games, Nikola gets a very non-malicious elbow, an inadvertent elbow to the head and he's bleeding.'
''Like, get a staple gun out here,'' Malone said. ''And it finally stopped and Nikola put on another MVP performance.''
The Milwaukee Bucks sealed second place in the Eastern Conference standings as they beat the in-form Boston Celtics 127-121. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jrue Holiday each scored 29 points as Khris Middleton had 22 points, nine assists and eight rebounds and Bobby Portis scored 17 points and Brook Lopez had 15. For the Celtics, Jaylen Brown had a triple double with 22 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds as Marcus Smart shot 7 of 12 on 3-point attempts and scored 29 points, while Daniel Theis had 22 points and Derrick White added 19 points. With this result, The Bucks (50-30) moved a half-game ahead of the Celtics (50-31) and a full game ahead of the Philadelphia 76ers (49-31), who lost their recent match as Miami Heat sealed top spot in the Eastern Conference standings.
''It would be a lot easier if we don't wait until the last quarter or last couple of minutes to get stops, but it happens,'' said Milwaukee's Khris Middleton ''No matter how the game's going, I just love the way we keep competing.''
''We've seen that growth from (Brown) this year,'' Celtics coach Ime Udoka said. ''With certain guys out, he had the ball more and had to make those plays.''
''I guess I just got lucky, really,'' Holiday said. ''I left it short and it came back to me
''Surgery can be season-ending, so you don't want to do that,'' Hill said after the Bucks' Thursday morning shootaround. ''You want to figure out how I can manage to get back out with the guys. It feels a lot better now. I'm just trying to give it everything I have.''
The other results are:
- Hornets 128 - 101 Magic
- Raptors 119 - 114 76ers
- Pelicans 127 - 94 Trail Blazers
- Timberwolves 127 - 121 Spurs
- Warriors 128 - 112 Lakers
Tomorrow’s fixtures are:
- Wizards vs Knicks
- Pistons vs Bucks
- Nets vs Cavs
- Raptors vs Rockets
- Bulls vs Hornets
- Heat vs Hawks
- Mavericks vs Trail Blazers
- Jazz vs Suns
- Lakers vs Thunder
- 76ers vs Pacers
NBA: Bucks edge out the Nets as Lakers drop to 11th in the west
(Basketball news) The Milwaukee Bucks edged out the Brooklyn Nets as they beat them 120-119 in overtime. For the Bucks, Antetokounmpo had 44 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. Jrue Holiday added 19 points and Khris Middleton had 16 before being ejected as Giannis became the all time leading scorer for the Bucks. For the Nets, Kevin Durant had 26 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds but missed a 3-pointer that would have won it. Kyrie Irving scored 25 points and Bruce Brown had 23. With this result the Bucks moved up to 2nd in the Eastern Conference table as they are only one victory away from getting the top spot in the standings, their current record stands at 48-28.
''When I'm done we can talk about it, but now there's no time,'' Antetokoumpo said, looking ahead to Friday's game against the Clippers. ''There's things that have to be done.''
''We just fight, compete, compete and know that obviously it helps to have that big fellow on your team that can literally break a game open for you and make plays,'' Bucks swingman Wesley Matthews said.
''It was just one of those games that got funky at the end, but we've just got to finish it out in regulation,'' Irving said.
''I'm not averse to seeing how they're doing and where they're at, but it's not something that I'm, like I said the other day, refreshing my feed daily,'' Nash said.
''I think it's in a good place,'' Budenholzer said. ''I don't think it's anything that we're concerned about, but there's a daily attention and effort that it takes from the sports performance team and him and what he does to be his best. It's impressive.''
The Los Angeles Lakers lost their fifth straight match and dropped down to 11th in the standings meaning that they are out of the play in positions also as they lost 122-109 against the Utah Jazz. For the Jazz, Donovan Mitchell scored 29 points and Rudy Gobert had 25 points and 17 rebounds as Jordan Clarkson scored 19 points, Mike Conley added 18 and Bojan Bogdanovic 11 in his return from injury. For the Lakers, Russell Westbrook scored 24 points and Dwight Howard had 21 points and 14 rebounds for the Lakers, who were without LeBron James (ankle sprain) and Anthony Davis (foot sprain). With this result the Utah Jazz improved their record to 46-31 and stayed in 5th in the Western Conference standings.
''It was huge to get a win,'' Mitchell said. ''The negativity and the losses and all that pressure was more external, but it was not an ideal time to have a five-game losing streak. So it's nice to celebrate this one tonight.''
''We were finding guys, making the right reads, getting switches, being able to break down the defense, get in the paint and make the extra pass,'' Mitchell said of the Jazz offense returning to its efficient ways with 51 percent shooting and only eight turnovers.
''I know how important these games are down the stretch. I just wanted to get my body and my mind prepared for tonight. Felt really good out there. Just a little bit hurt about not winning the game,'' Howard said.
''For me, personally, it's a big adjustment. You don't know who's playing and who's out. Who's starting and who's not. Something I'm not accustomed to. But like I said, I make no excuses. I own whatever it is, play whoever is playing and try to make the best out of it,'' Westbrook said.
''I really like the way we were able to re-focus together and reconnect. We did a good job closing . and that's big for us,'' Gobert said.
The other results were:
- Pistons 102 - 94 76ers
- Hawks 131 - 107 Cavs
- Bulls 135 - 130 Clippers
Tomorrow’s fixtures are:
- Wizards vs Mavericks
- Magic vs Raptors
- Celtics vs Pacers
- Thunder vs Pistons
- Rockets vs Kings
- Grizzlies vs Suns
- Bucks vs Clippers
- Spurs vs Trail Blazers
- Nuggets vs Timberwolves
- Lakers vs Pelicans
- 76ers vs Hornets
- Knicks vs Cavs
NBA: The Bucks overcome the Bulls while Warriors lose
(Basketball news) The Milwaukee Bucks beat the Chicago Bulls quite comprehensively as Giannis and Jrue Holiday inspired a 126-98 victory. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo had 25 points and 17 rebounds in his return to action Jrue Holiday had a game-high 27 points to go along with seven assists and no turnovers as the Bucks won for the 15th time in their last 16 meetings with the Bulls, including all three matchups this season. For the Bulls, Nikola Vucevic had 22 points as DeMar DeRozan and LaVine added 21 points each as the Bulls lost for the ninth time in 12 games. With this result the Bucks improved their record to 45-27 and moved second in the Eastern Conference standings.
'He took a fall in the Minnesota game, and it was pretty sore and stiff, so we've had it looked at,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said before the game. ''We feel like it's short term, but we'll see how he feels the next day or two.''
''Jrue was being Jrue,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''Jrue was being aggressive, making good decisions, getting downhill, getting everybody involved, guarding Zach (LaVine). Everybody was doing their job. Obviously we knew that Khris wasn't playing, and Khris is a big part of our team and what we do here, but at the end of the day, even with the team that we have, we're a great team.''
''Shots we would want them to take, they made,'' Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. ''It was a night where they really, really had it going. Credit to them. And it was a night we just didn't shoot the ball particularly well.''
''At some point, we've got to get tired of getting our butt kicked like this and flip that switch of understanding, all right, enough is enough,'' DeRozan said. ''Now it's time to turn it around and show that desperation.''
The Golden State Warriors suffered a shocking defeat to the Orlando Magic 94-90. For the Magic, Wendell Carter Jr. led them with 19 points and Wagner had 18 points and a big finish as did Cole Anthony, who had 14 points and five assists. For the Warriors, Jordan Poole scored 26 points, shot 40% for the game and had seven turnovers in the fourth quarter on the way to their third straight loss as Klay Thompson added 15 points and Otto Porter Jr. had 14 points and 15 rebounds. With this result they slipped down to third in the Western Conference standings behind the Memphis Grizzlies as the Magic improved their record to 20-53.
''Franz can play, man,'' said Magic guard Cole Anthony, who had 14 points and five assists. ''He can hoop. I saw it here first hand tonight.''
''I think we're playing soft, I think we're playing stupid,'' Warriors forward Draymond Green said. ''We're just not playing good basketball. We're getting punked, and we're losing a lot of fourth quarters. No disrespect to the Orlando Magic, but they're one of the worst teams in the league.''
“No, Steph's not going to bring a level of physicality to the game,'' he said. ''That's not his job.'
''We have to look at our lineup, we have to address everything,'' Kerr said. '' ... It's like a domino effect. You saw me searching for lineups tonight. But I was really disappointed in the fourth quarter. We did not execute at all in the fourth quarter.''
''But we stayed engaged in the game,'' Anthony said. ''We realized there's four quarters to a game, and we're not going to lose in one moment like that.''
''Fouling 3-point shooters has killed us in the last two games,'' Kerr said. ''I love these guys, but we have to learn how to win. Right now, we don't know how to win.''
The other results were:
- Knicks 111 - 117 Hawks
- Nuggets 127 - 115 Clippers
Tomorrow’s fixtures are:
- Pistons vs Hawks
- Pacers vs Kings
- Hornets vs Knicks
- Grizzlies vs Nets
- Heat vs Warriors
- Celtics vs Jazz
- Timberwolves vs Suns
- Thunder vs Magic
- Lakers vs 76ers
- Trail Blazers vs Spurs
The Heats beat the Bulls and the Bucks steam roll past the Hornets
(Basketball news) The Miami Heats comprehensively beat the Chicago Bulls 112-99. For the Heat, Gabe Vincent and Tyler Herro each scored 20 points as Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo each had 15 points for Miami. Max Strus had all 13 of his points in the fourth quarter for them. For the Bulls, Zach LaVine led the Bulls with 22 points, while Ayo Dosunmu had 18 and Nikola Vucevic added 14 as DeMar DeRozan's streak of 10 consecutive games with at least 30 points ended; he finished with 18. With this result Miami reclaimed the top position in the Western Conference table with their ninth successive win as their record currently stands at 41-21.
''Whatever people want to say about us is cool,'' Herro said.
''I was just playing,'' DeRozan said of the streak. ''Just going out there playing, competing, doing whatever I could. I was just going out there playing. ... I'm glad it's over with so I can stop hearing everything about it.''
''I think the biggest thing for me is we have to get battle-tested in some of these games and we just don't have a lot of guys who have gone into these kinds of experiences,'' Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. ''I think it's really good for us.''
“When the opportunity comes you want to take advantage of it,'' Vincent said. ''We miss Kyle and can't wait to get him back.''
The Milwaukee Bucks steam rolled past the Charlotte Hornets as they beat them 130-106. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo had 26 points and 16 rebounds, Jrue Holiday had 21 points and eight assists, and Bobby Portis added 20 points and 10 rebounds for them. Milwaukee made its first 26 free throws and finished 32 of 37 from the line. Antetokounmpo made all 14 of his free throws. For the Hornets, LaMelo Ball scored 24 points, Terry Rozier finished with 17 points and eight assists. With this result the Bucks improved their record to 37-25 and currently are in 4th place in the Eastern Conference table.
''If we got everybody locked in, giving that effort defensively, who can really score on us at a high level?'' said Jevon Carter, who scored 10 points off the bench. ''And then on the other end, being able to guard us in transition. So, we keep that pace up, sky's the limit.''
''We were in a little bit of an aggressive mindset'' in the second quarter, Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''I thought Giannis quarterbacked in some of those situations, whether it was against the press or against the zone and found shooters. Sometimes we were able to play fast against the zone before it could get set, get some corner 3s.''
The other results were:
- Cavs 122 - 127 Timberwolves
- Magic 119 - 103 Pacers
- Nets 97 - 133 Raptors
- Thunder 110 - 131 Kings
- Grizzlies 118 - 105 Spurs
Tomorrow’s fixture are:
- Wizards vs Pistons
- Raptors vs Nets
- Celtics vs Hawks
- Rockets vs Clippers
- Timberwolves vs Warriors
- Lakers vs Mavericks
NBA: Suns continued their winning streak as Giannis helps Bucks win
(Basketball news) The Phoenix Suns continued their winning streak to 6 games as they beat the Los Angeles Clippers 103-96. For the Suns, Booker scored a game-high 26 points, Paul added 17 points and 14 assists, Mikel Bridges further added 19 points and Deandre Ayton had 12 points and 12 rebounds as the Suns have won six straight games and 17 of their past 18 dating back to Jan. 11. They also pushed their NBA-best record to 47-10. For the Clippers, Marcus Morris Sr. led the scoring with 23 points while Nicolas Batum had 18 as Reggie Jackson had a tough shooting night, making just 7 of 26 shots from the field. With this result the Suns remained on top of the Western Conference standings as the Clippers stayed in 8th place with a record of 29-31.
''We turn it on,'' Booker said. ''I don't want to make it sound like it's an on/off switch like we're not trying the rest of the game, but we've been in those situations, and we understand how much those little plays and 50/50 balls matter.''
''I do think the experiences we've had over the past couple years with this group, with Chris being the point guard, has certainly helped us,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said. ''Chris and Book aren't afraid to take those shots. They're not afraid to have the ball in their hands.''
''They have a team full of guys who can defend and want to defend,'' Clippers coach Ty Lue said. ''That makes them great right there.''
''Knowing it is just 10,000 - some guys get 30,000,'' Batum said. ''I don't know how they do that. It is pretty crazy. It's an achievement. It is a good thing to put that on the resume.''
The Milwaukee Bucks rode on a Giannis 50 point masterful performance as they beat the Indiana Pacers 128-119. For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo scored a season-high 50 points, two off his career best, and pulled down 14 rebounds as this the first time he scored 50 points since the memorable title-clinching game in the NBA Finals last season, along with that Khris Middelton added 19 points and Jrue Holiday further scored 14 points. For the Pacers, Buddy Hield scored a season-high 36 points and Tyrese Haliburton had 17 points and eight assists. With this result the Bucks move within one victory of going on top of Eastern Conference standings as they are currently third with an improved record of 36-23.
'Obviously, it's a nice feeling to have 50, you'll always remember it, but I care about the win. I want to win games,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''We have another one on Thursday. We'll try to finish and go to the All-Star break on a good note. As long as we're winning, I'm good. You do whatever it takes. If you are thinking about let me get to 50, let me get mine, it doesn't work that way. You have to focus on winning games.''
''He's in a good place and good rhythm at the free-throw line,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''You get 14 of those and a couple of 3-balls and it can add up for him. Fifty is never easy. It's great to have him back.''
The other results were:
- Heat 99 - 107 Mavericks
- 76ers 87 - 135 Celtics
- Hawks 124 - 116 Cavs
- Pelicans 109 - 121 Grizzlies
Tomorrow’s matches are:
- Magic vs Hawks
- Knicks vs Nets
- Pacers vs Wizards
- Celtics vs Pistons
- Grizzlies vs Trail Blazers
- Thunder vs Spurs
- Timberwolves vs Raptors
- Bulls vs Kings
- Suns vs Rockets
- Warriors vs Nuggets
- Lakers vs Jazz
Fans vote for the 2022 NBA All-Star game starters
(Basketball news) The NBA All Star is just around the corner and the fans have voted LeBron James as the captain of the Western Conference and Kevin Durant as the Eastern Conference captain. James and Durant, as the leading vote-getters in each conference, will be the captains who draft players for the rosters for the Feb. 20 game in Cleveland. LeBron James began his NBA career with the Cavaliers in 2003 and led them to the 2016 championship during his second stint there and was subsequently chosen as an All-Star for the 18th straight time. He has also been a captain every year since the league went away from the East vs. West format. As for Durant’s availability for the game is in doubt because of a sprained knee ligament. He was voted a starter for the 10th time.
2022 NBA All-Star: Eastern Conference starters
Kevin Durant (Brooklyn Nets)
Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks)
Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers)
Trae Young (Atlanta Hawks)
DeMar DeRozan (Chicago Bulls)
2022 NBA All-Star: Western Conference starters
LeBron James (Los Angeles Lakers)
Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets)
Andrew Wiggins (Golden State Warriors)
Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors)
Ja Morant (Memphis Grizzlies)
As for the rest of the players, fan ballots will account for 50% of the vote, with a media panel and current players each accounting for 25%. As for first timers Ja Morant, the No. 2 pick behind Zion Williamson in the 2019 draft, was rewarded for elevating Memphis to a surprising third in the Western Conference. Averaging 25.8 points, 6.9 assists and 5.9 rebounds, he joins Marc Gasol as the only Grizzlies players voted All-Star starters. Wiggins was the most surprising selection. The No. 1 pick of the 2014 draft has blossomed since being traded to Golden State two years ago and is averaging 18.1 points this season for the Warriors who have the league’s second-best record.
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry makes his 8th appearance for the Western Conference, while reigning Finals MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo makes his 6th appearance representing the Milwaukee Bucks’ for the Eastern Conference.Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young returns to the All-Star game in 2022 after making his first appearance in 2020. Chicago Bulls guard DeMar DeRozan has been rewarded for his amazing season he's having as an All-Star starter, his fifth career appearance and first appearance since 2018. Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid also makes his fifth appearance alongside reigning league MVP Nikola Jokic who will play his fourth All-Star game this year.
The bench players for both conferences will be revealed next week on February 3 after a vote from all the coaches in the NBA. Five more players from each conference will be named to complete the team’s out and there will be an additional wild card player for each conference. The game will take place on 20th February 2022 in the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.
NBA: Lakers snap out of their losing streak and Bucks overcome top seed Bulls
(Basketball news) The Lakers got back to winning ways as they beat the Orlando Magic 116-105. For the Lakers, LeBron James scored 29 points and played exclusively at center in the second half as the Los Angeles Lakers rallied from an eight-point halftime deficit as Carmelo Anthony scored 19 of his 23 points in the second half, Russell Westbrook had 18 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists and Stanley Johnson added 11 points off the bench, this was also Carmelo’s 8th 20 point game. For the Magic, Rookie guard Jalen Suggs scored a career-best 22 points for the Magic while Wendell Carter Jr. added 19 points as Mo Bamba had 11 points and eight rebounds. With this result Lakers improved their record to 23-23 as they moved upto 7th in the Western Conference standings.
''He's the most unique player in the history of the game,'' Vogel said of James. ''We won a championship with him playing point guard two years ago, he's been a ball-handling wing throughout his career and he's been playing center for us. It's pretty remarkable, and for him to be doing it at this stage of his career, it's even more remarkable.''
''I was upset about (not finishing Wednesday's game) and I was more upset that we didn't win the game,'' Westbrook said. ''I've been here doing my job since Day 1 and doing everything asked of me. I want to continue to do that for the betterment of the team.''
''We feel like the first game on an East Coast road trip is always the toughest game, and that first half is usually when you're trying to get your legs back coming off a long flight from LA,'' James said. ''We knew we could play a lot better in the second half.''
''They came out with a level of intensity to try and push it back up,'' Magic coach Jamahl Mosley said. ''The same thing happened when we were in Los Angeles.'
The Milwaukee Bucks displayed why they are the defending champions as they beat the Chicago Bulls 94-90. For the Bucks, Antetokounmpo had 30 points and 12 rebounds as Middleton had 16 points and 11 rebounds, while Bobby Portis added 12 points and 13 rebounds. Jrue Holiday scored 13 points. For the Bulls, DeMar DeRozan scored 35 points but missed a 3-pointer that would have put the Bulls ahead with 23 seconds left as Nikola Vucevic had 19 points and 11 rebounds and Matt Thomas added 11 points and went 3 of 5 on 3-point attempts. With this result it meant that the Bulls dropped out of the top spot after the Nets had won their match, which means that the Chicago Bulls have a record of 28-16 sitting second in the Eastern Conference standings. As for the Bucks, they improved their record to 29-19 and sit in 4th place in the standings.
''At the end of the day, a win is a win,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''We did the right things. We created good habits tonight.'
''For Alex to be in the air like that and for (Allen) to take him down like that, he could have ended his career,'' Donovan said. ''(Allen) has a history of this. That, to me, was really dangerous. I really hope the league takes a hard look at something like that because he could have really, really seriously hurt (Caruso).''
''I think Grayson (did) nothing malicious, went to block the shot,'' Budenholzer said. ''I think it's a close call, and they went with flagrant 2. I'm not going to disagree. It's right on the border and that's the direction they went.''
''We talk about versatility in a lot of different ways,'' Budenholzer said. ''And I think you've got to be versatile in the kind of games you can win. I'm very proud of the guys, for them to find a way to win tonight. We had to earn that.''
The Golden State Warriors won a close encounter with the Houston Rockets as they beat them 105-103. Curry nailed a game-winning 20-foot jumper from the top of the key as the clock hit 0.0 and the buzzer blared, scoring 22 points and sending the Warriors past Houston. For the Warriors, Jordan Poole had 20 points as Andrew Wiggins also chipped in with 17 points, Klay Thompson sat out the second game of the back-to-back games. For the Rockets, Christian Wood had 12 of his 19 points in the first quarter and grabbed 15 rebounds and Kevin Porter Jr. scored 17 points for Houston. With this the Warriors stayed 2nd in the Western Conference with a record of 33-13.
''It felt great,'' Curry said. ''The way the whole last 48 hours have been with the way we played grinding out last night, going overtime, losing, the disappointment with that and then coming into this game, the back and forth, just grind-it-out mentality we had, the resilience we showed to give ourselves a chance the second half was impressive
'I was shocked. I just talked to him. It was his first ever walk off game-winner,'' coach Steve Kerr said. ''Obviously he's had plenty in the final seconds. I didn't know that. A fitting end to a grind-out game that we really needed. I think in some ways we had forgotten how hard you have to play to win in this league.
The other results were:
- Spurs 102 - 117 Nets
- Hornets 121 - 98 Thunder
- 76ers 101 - 102 Clippers
- Celtics 105 - 109 Trail Blazers
- Hawks 110 - 108 Heat
- Wizards 105 - 109 Raptors
- Jazz 111 - 101 Pistons
- Nuggets 118 - 122 Grizzlies
Tomorrow’s fixtures are:
- Bucks vs Kings
- Cavaliers vs Thunder
- Suns vs Pacers
- Knicks vs Clippers
The Bucks win big against the Warriors as Grizzlies made it 11 straight victories
(Basketball news) The Milwaukee Bucks made a statement as they won 118-99 against the in form Golden State Warriors. For the Bucks, Antetokounmpo had 30 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists to help Milwaukee rout the Golden State Warriors as Khris Middleton added 23 points, Bobby Portis 20 and Grayson Allen 15 for the Bucks. For the Warriors, Andrew Wiggins led the team with 16 points. Jonathan Kuminga had 15, Curry 12 and Thompson 11 as no one could really get the grips of the game. Antetokounmpo had his third triple-double of the season and 28th of his career as head coach Budenholzer's return from the NBA's COVID-19 protocols. With this result the Bucks improved their record to 27-17 as they moved to 4th in the Eastern Conference standings.
''I think Coach Darvin did a great job stepping up, leading the team, coaching the team and keeping us accountable,'' Antetokounmpo said. ''But, obviously, it's great to have Coach Bud back healthy, happy and getting us ready to go.''
'I think there was a good focus from us tonight,'' Budenholzer said. ''I think when it starts on the defensive end, usually that's when we're at our best. A team like the Warriors, a player like (Stephen) Curry and (Klay) Thompson, they bring out the best in you. They bring out the highest focus.''
'We just got off to a terrible start where everything went wrong on both ends of the floor,'' Curry said.
''I know we just got our butts kicked, but we're just in a rough patch in our season,'' Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. ''It happens to every team, every year pretty much with very few exceptions. We're in a little bit of a rut and we were playing a team that was ready and played a great, great first half. We're a little out of sorts. We've just got to get back on track, and we will.'
The Memphis Grizzlies made it 11 straight victories as they won 116-108 against the Minnesota Timberwolves. For the Grizzlies, Ja Morant had 16 points, nine assists and eight rebounds, and John Konchar added 15 points and a career-best 17 rebounds as Desmond Bane scored 21 points and Jaren Jackson Jr. added 20 to create history for their franchise. For the Timberwolves, Anthony Edwards led the Timberwolves with 30 points. D'Angelo Russell had 29 points and six assists, and Karl-Anthony Towns added 25 points and nine rebounds. With this result the Grizzlies improved their record to 30-12 and moved up to 3rd in the Western Conference standings.
''It's all about attention to details,'' Minnesota coach Chris Finch said. ''It's all about the small things. It's all about the winning plays. . You're going to be in close games, and that's going to win you games, and that, right now, is not what we're doing.''
''He just does a lot on the floor for us,'' Morant said, adding of Konchar's shooting ''You really can't leave him open. He's just a spark plug for us off the bench.''
''We don't have time to take the Ls that we should have won. Tonight, I definitely feel we should have won this game, and, especially New Orleans,'' Edwards said, adding: ''These games hurt when you don't have everything right and you come down to the very end and you can't get a rebound to finish a possession.''
The other results were:
- Pelicans 113 - 89 Clippers
- Nets 109 - 130 Thunder
- Nuggets 140 - 108 Trail Blazers
Tomorrow’s fixtures are:
- Pacers vs Suns
- Hornets vs Magic
- Pistons vs Raptors
- 76ers vs Celtics
- Bulls vs Warriors
- Heat vs Hawks
- Spurs vs Cavaliers
- Kings vs Rockets
- Grizzlies vs Mavericks
NBA: Bucks and Nets both lose as Terry Rozier shines
(Basketball news) The Milwaukee Bucks lost to the spirited Charlotte Hornets 103-99. For the Hornets, Terry Rozier shined as he scored 27 points, Ball scored 18 of his 23 points in the second half, and Miles Bridges added 17 points and 11 rebounds for the Hornets, who have won six of eight games and improved to 12-5 at home. For the Bucks, Khris Middleton had 27 points and 11 assists, and Giannis Antetokounmpo added 26 points, 13 rebounds. With this result the Bucks stayed in 4th in the Eastern Conference standings with a record of 26-17, as the Hornets improved their record to 22-19 as they moved 8th in the standings.
“That is a highly difficult shot, but he makes it look effortless,'' Hornets coach James Borrego said. ''Melo has that uncanny ability to be going 100 mph, get off-balance and still be poised when he raises up. ... That's tough to do for a player who has been in the league 15 years, let alone a guy who has been in the league two years.''
''You are definitely concerned anytime you lose four out of five,'' Middleton said. ''And you never want to lose two in a row. You understand what the circumstances are (with players being out) and you never want to use that as an excuse. We understand what we're going through and everybody is going through. But we still have to go out there and compete.'
The Brooklyn Nets lost to the Portland Trail Blazers 114-108. For the Nets, Kyrie started his second game as he could only manage 22 points as Kevin Durant led all scorers with 28 points and 10 rebounds for them as it was his 19th straight game with 20 or more points, the second-longest streak of 20-point games in Nets history.. For the Trail Blazers, Anfernee Simons had 23 points and 11 assists, as Robert Covington had 21 points, including five 3-pointers and McLemore had 20 points and five 3s. for the Blazers, who saw all five starters score in double figures. The Blazers were again without their star backcourt of Damian Lillard out with lower abdominal tendinopathy and CJ McCollum was out for 14 games after a collapsed lung. With this result the Blazers improved their record to 16-24 as they stayed 10th in the standings on the other hand the Nets stayed 2nd in the Eastern Conference with a record of 25-14.
''I think RoCo did a good job of playing him in the second half,'' Simons said. ''So that was big for us to slow him down and just kind of play team defense. We've been playing very hard, we've been making a lot less mistakes on defense. That's been helping us.''
''Certainly nobody in the world thought that we would win this game with the guys that we have missing, even though they're missing some important players too,'' Portland first-year coach Chauncey Billups said. ''I'm more happy than anything for our team, to be honest. We've suffered a lot of losses in this building, a lot of bad losses.''
''It felt like I made a few good moves, but now it's just getting back in that NBA action of that athleticism and catching up to that speed, that's really what it is at this point, I feel,'' Irving said.
''Second half, they hit 3s in that third quarter, they hit 3s in that fourth quarter. You gotta give them credit for knocking down shots but I thought we were there, intentions were good,'' Durant said. ''We've just got to finish it a little better, finish plays a little better.'
The other results were:
- Pistons 126 - 116 Jazz
- Knicks 111- 96 Spurs
- Celtics 101 - 98 Pacers
- Rockets 91 - 111 76ers
- Kings 108 - 109 Cavaliers
Tomorrow’s matches are:
- Wizards vs Thunder
- Raptors vs Suns
- Grizzlies vs Warriors
- Bulls vs Pistons
- Pelicans vs Timberwolves
- Clippers vs Nuggets
NBA: Warriors extended their winning run as the Rockets hand the Brooklyn Nets a shock defeat
(Basketball news) The Golden State Warriors won their 21st match of the season with a 104-94 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. Curry scored 22 points and moved within nine 3s of tying Ray Allen's record, Steph Curry is closing in on Allen's mark of 2,973 regular-season 3s made from 1996-2014. Draymond Green had 10 rebounds, eight assists and five points, and Jordan Poole scored eight of his 20 points in the third quarter as Golden State started to pull away. Otto Porter Jr. contributed 15 points and six rebounds off the bench as the Warriors improved to 21-4. For the Trail Blazers Jusuf Nurkic had 12 points, 13 rebounds and six assists before fouling out late. Nassir Little scored 18 points for the Blazers, Norman Powell scored 26 points but went 1 for 7 from deep, and the Blazers made just 8 of 30 on 3-pointers as the Trail Blazers missed injured allstars Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. With this result Warriors move to the top of the Western Conference.
''To make that many 3s in one game obviously has never been done before, so it was just a routine night,'' coach Steve Kerr said of the 16 Curry needed coming into the game to top Allen. ''He made six, which is nothing for him. I don't think I ever did that in my entire career one time.''
''I feel like it will be special no matter what because I'll make it special and it will be an amazing experience for me and my teammates,'' Curry said this week
The Brooklyn Nets suffered a shock 114-104 loss to the Houston Rockets, who subsequently are showing an uprise in form. Eric Gordon scored 21 points before being ejected in the fourth quarter and Garrison Mathews added 19 as the Houston Rockets extended their winning streak to seven and one of the in form teams in the NBA. Although James Harden had 25 points for the Nets, NBA leading scorer Kevin Durant and LaMarcus Aldridge both sat out for this match, Cam Thomas had 18 points for Brooklyn and Mills added 12 points. The loss snapped a six-game road winning streak for the Nets, whose nine road wins are tied with the Suns for most in the NBA. With this result Nets still remained on top of the Eastern Conference with a record of 17-8.
“The adversity that we went through prior to this point has made it even sweeter,'' coach Stephen Silas said. ''We're feeling pretty good about ourselves.'
''When you beat a team like that it means something,'' Mathews said. ''This streak's been a huge boost to our confidence. It's been a huge boost to our morale.''
The Miami Heat finally snapped their losing streak with a 113-104 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks. Caleb Martin scored a career-high 28 points, he shot 9 of 12 from the field, including 6 for 8 on 3-pointers, as the Heat tied a franchise record with 22 3s against the defending NBA champions. Kyle Lowry had 22 points and 13 assists, and Max Strus scored all 16 of his points in the fourth quarter for Miami, which snapped a three-game home losing streak. For the Bucks Jrue Holiday scored 27 points and Khris Middleton finished with 20 for the Bucks. Two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo had 15 points. With this result the Heat’s improved their record to 15-11 and are currently in 4th position and as for the Bucks their record stands at 16-10.
The other results were:
- Pistons 116 - 119 Wizards
- Hornets 106 - 110 76ers
- Cavaliers 115 - 92 Bulls
- Pacers 122- 102 Knicks
- Raptors 109 - 110 Thunder
- Grizzlies 96 - 104 Mavericks
- Timberwolves 104 - 136 Jazz
- Pelicans 114 - 120 Nuggets
- Kings 142 - 130 Magic
- Clippers 114 - 111 Celtics
The fixtures for tomorrow are;
- 76ers vs Jazz
- Grizzlies vs Lakers
- Spurs vs Nuggets
NBA: Phoenix Suns and Golden State Warriors became the first teams to win 20 matches this season
(Basketball news) Phoenix Suns became the first team to reach 20 wins as they won 108-104 against San Antonio Spurs. Paul had a few clutch plays late in the fourth and finished with 21 points and 10 assists, Jae Crowder added a season-high 19 points for the Spurs all five San Antonio starters scored in double figures, led by Murray's 17 points. Bryn Forbes added 15 points off the bench. Phoenix was playing its first game since having its franchise-record 18-game winning streak snapped against Golden State on Friday. The Suns didn't appear fazed by the setback and won for the 19th time in 20 games which meant that they improved their record to 20-4 and are joint first in the Western Conference with the Warriors.
''He's real crafty,'' Suns forward Cam Johnson said. ''There's a reason he's one of the all-time steals leader. ... He's smart, quick with his hands and when you watch him do it, it's pretty impressive.''
'We still fought and made it a game,'' McDermott said. ''We had a chance to win against one of the best teams in the league. Unfortunately, we lost, but I think we will learn a lot from this one.''
The Golden State Warriors continued their marvellous start to the season with a comprehensive 126-95 victory over the Orlando Magic. Steph Curry had seven more 3s on the way to his 31 points and eight assists, Andrew Wiggins hit a career-high eight 3s and finished with 28 points as they both combined for 59 points. Curry swished a half-court shot to beat the first-quarter buzzer and wound up shooting 8 of 16 as now he has 2,958 career regular-season 3s, 15 from tying the great Ray Allen's 2,973. For the Magic Gary Harris scored 17 points to lead the Magic, Wendell Carter Jr. added 14 points and 12 rebounds for Orlando. With this result the Warriors improved their record to 20-4.
''I know what the situation is, yeah,'' Curry said, smiling. ''I always just play the game but obviously know I'm closing in. But try not to let it creep in to how you play and just enjoy the journey to get there `cause it does mean a lot to me as I do get closer. ... I'll talk about it when it happens.''
''He's Steph Curry, so anything's possible,'' Kerr said. ''He made half-court shots in back-to-back games.''
The Milwaukee Bucks won their 10th match out of a possible 11 as they beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 112-107. Giannis Antetokounmpo came back from a two-game absence and scored 27 points on his 27th birthday, the two-time MVP made all three of his 3-point attempts and also had 12 rebounds in his return from injury, he also scored 15 points in the fourth quarter to take his team to victory. The Bucks had more contributions as Holiday had 20 points, eight assists and seven rebounds. Khris Middleton provided 21 points and eight assists. Pat Connaughton scored 12, and Bobby Portis had 10 points and 16 rebounds. Jarrett Allen led the Cavaliers with 25 points and nine rebounds while shooting 10 of 12. Lauri Markkanen scored 20, Kevin Love 15, Evan Mobley 12 and Darius Garland 10. With this result the Bucks improved their record to 16-9 and are currently in fourth place in the Eastern Conference.
“Guys are playing with confidence, playing together,'' said Antetokounmpo, who went 6 of 7 on free throws. ''We're guarding together. We're in a very, very good spot right now.''
''I thought that pass and that shot might have been the biggest kind of swing because it was hanging there at two for a while,'' Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. ''We needed a play from somebody.''
''We're going to fight till the end,'' Allen said. ''That's the main thing I learned about this team, about the guys. No matter how we start the game, no matter who's in front of us, big or small, we're going to go out there and fight till the end. You look at these last two games, we came out flat in both of them. We could have just rolled over and gave the game up easily, but we came back and tried to stay in it till the end.''
The other results were :
- Pistons 103 - 114 Thunders
- Pacers 116 - 110 Wizards
- Hornets 124 - 127 76ers
- Heat 90 - 105 Grizzlies
- Bulls 109 - 97 Nuggets
- Timberwolves 110 - 121 Hawks
- Trail Blazers 90 - 102 Clippers
The fixtures for tomorrow are:
- Mavericks vs Nets
- Spurs vs Knicks
- Lakers vs Celtics
NBA: Phoenix Suns extend their winning run to 18 wins as Memphis Grizzlies create NBA history
(Football news) Phoenix Suns defeated the Detroit Pistons 114-103 as they went onto win their 18 consecutive victory. Cam Johnson and Cameron Payne both scored 19 points to lead the Phoenix Suns to victory as the Suns bench finished with 48 points, Deandre Ayton had 17 points and 12 rebounds and Chris Paul finished with 12 points and 12 assists as Phoenix improved to 19-3 for the season. For the Pistons, Jerami Grant had 34 points which fell to 2-10 on the road. Cunningham, No. 1 overall draft pick, scored 19 points on 8-of-15 shooting. The Suns still haven’t lost since Oct. 27, when Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes hit a 3-pointer as time ran out for a 110-107 victory.
“It is hard to win in this league and we are not satisfied but it is special,'' Williams said. ''To do it in front of our fan base, in a special city like this with the history of this franchise is pretty cool and I want our guys to enjoy it.''
''I haven't talked about streaks of any kind just because we have been so focused on improving,'' Suns coach Monty Williams said of the run that's lasted more than a month. ''But it is really cool to be a part of something like that.''
The Memphis Grizzlies created some NBA history as they defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder by 73 points as the final score was 152-79. Their 152-79 win over the Thunder shattered the NBA record for the largest margin of victory. The 73-point margin easily topped the previous mark, which was Cleveland's 68-point win over Miami. The Cavaliers topped the Heat 148-80 on Dec. 17, 1991. Memphis used 12 players and nine of them reached double figures in scoring, with Jaren Jackson Jr. leading the scoring with 27 points for the Grizzlies. Memphis was also without its injured guard and best player Ja Morant. The Grizzlies set a franchise record for shooting, making 62.5% of their shots. De'Anthony Melton scored 19 points, Santi Aldama scored 18 and John Konchar scored 17 for the Grizzlies and none of those three players even started. With this result the Grizzlies improved their record to 12-10 as they moved to 5th in the Western Conference.
“Franchise records are obviously great. Obviously proud of our guys that they don't think about that,'' Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said. ''We're just motivated by what our standards are every single night. Tonight was on pretty full display both offensively and defensively.''
''Obviously, it was a combination of things,'' Daigneault said. ''They played with great force and pace. They made some shots. We didn't shoot it well early and just really couldn't get a grip on the game. Any part of the game
The Chicago Bulls won 119-115 against the New York Knicks as it was a close encounter. DeRozan scored 34 points, Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic each added 27. For the Knicks, Julius Randle had 30 points, 12 rebounds and six assists but missed two free throws in the end as the Knicks (11-11) fell to .500 for the first time this season after starting 5-1, Alec Burks, Evan Fournier and Derrick Rose all had 16 points for the Knicks. With this result the Bulls improved their record to 15-8 as they moved up to 2nd in the Eastern Conference.
''It's fun when we go out there and compete. We face adversity at times and it felt good when we come out of that on top,'' DeRozan said.
“It helps our team tremendously, especially if we're frantic,'' LaVine said. ''I think it just gives the whole team a sense of, like, a deep breath.''
“We started slowly. I thought there was frustration and so it's hard to play when you're playing frustrated and we can't get wrapped up with that,'' Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. ''Sometimes there's tough calls that go against you and that's just the way it is.''
The other results were:
- Raptors 97 - 93 Bucks
- Spurs 114 - 83 Trail Blazers
The fixtures for tomorrow are:
- Heat vs Pacers
- Cavaliers vs Wizards
- 76ers vs Hawks
- Timberwolves vs Nets
- Magic vs Rockets
- Pelicans vs Mavericks]
- Celtics vs Jazz
- Suns vs Warriors
- Clippers vs Lakers
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: Warriors win their 8th straight game as Lakers bounce back with a victory over the Detroit Pistons
(Basketball news) The Golden State Warriors continued their fine start to the season as they won 105-90 against the LA Clippers. He scored 11 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter as the Warriors extended their winning streak to eight. Otto Porter Jr. added 18 points and 10 rebounds and Jordan Poole scored 17 points for the Warriors. They improved their NBA record to 18-2 heading into a showdown Tuesday night in Phoenix against the Suns who are 17-3 after winning 16 straight. Paul George led Los Angeles with 30 points, Eric Bledsoe and Marcus Morris added 13 apiece. The Clippers came into the game with wins in eight of their last 10 home games, Bledsoe reached 10,000 career points with a 3-pointer during the first quarter. With this result, the Warriors lead the Western Conference and will be looking to match their 2015-16 start.
“It was just an accumulation of all types of weird stuff. All that led into where I thought I got a foul,'' said Curry, who also had a season-high six steals to go with five rebounds and six assists. ''It definitely fired me and the team up. After that it was time to direct my energy into putting the ball in the basket
“That was as upset as I've seen him and that I have been in a long time. He clearly got fouled,'' Kerr said. ''When he knows he got fouled on a play like that and he doesn't call, the competitor will come out on him and he will lose his mind a little bit. But it will spur him like it did in this instance.''
The Lakers bounced back after their disappointing loss to the Sacramento Kings as they defeated the Detroit Pistons 110-106. James had 33 points, nine assists, Russell Westbrook had 25 points and nine assists and Anthony Davis added 24 points and 10 rebounds. The Lakers returned to .500 with their second win over Detroit in eight days. Grant scored 32 points and No. 1 pick Cade Cunningham had 15 points and 11 rebounds in the Pistons' sixth straight loss. The Lakers trio combined for a combined 82 points as they improved their record to 11-11 and currently stand 8th in the Western Conference.
“We were mad as heck the other night after that Sac loss,'' James said. ''We made it a point to come in today very focused on our game plan, learning from our mistakes, and we got better. Right there lets me know we're a team that cares and wants to get better.''
“That Sac game lingered with us for a couple of days, giving that game away,'' Davis said. ''I think we did a good job defensively tonight, getting this kick-start to a winning streak.''
The defending champs Milwaukee Bucks extended their winning streak to seven as they rout past the Indiana Pacers 118-110. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 26 points and 13 rebounds, Bobby Portis scored 15 points, Khris Middleton and Pat Connaughton each had 14 and Indianapolis native George Hill added 13 for the Bucks. Caris LeVert led the Pacers with a season-high 23 points. Malcolm Brogdon had 16. Much like the surging Bucks, Holiday has been averaging 19.7 points in the last four victories. He also had nine assists and seven rebounds against Indiana. With this victory they improved their record to 13-8 as they moved upto 4th in the Eastern Conference.
''Being able to go through the things we went through last year was huge,'' Holiday said of winning the NBA title. ''We know we can make a run at any time.''
When you look at the depth chart and look at how we're subbing, depth at the big position is something that we could use,'' Budenholzer said.
The tomorrow's fixtures are:
- 76ers vs Magic
- Heat vs Nuggets
- Rockets vs Thunder
- Timberwolves vs Pacers
- Bulls vs Hornets
- Spurs vs Wizards
- Mavericks vs Cavaliers
- Jazz vs Trail Blazers
- Clippers vs Pelicans
NBA: Lakers prevail over Miami Heat as Warriors continued their winning start to the season
(Basketball news) Lakers won a second straight game in overtime as they beat a strong Miami Heat 120-117 in what was a rematch of the 2020 NBA finals. Malik Monk scored five of his season-high 27 points in overtime, and the Lakers rallied late in regulation before surging in overtime. Russell Westbrook had his second triple double in consecutive matches 25 points, 14 assists and 12 rebounds for the Lakers, Anthony Davis also impressed with 24 points and 13 rebounds. Adebayo scored 28 points before fouling out and Kyle Lowry had 18 points and 11 assists for the Heat, who lost Butler for the night after he scored seven points while playing the entire first quarter. Tyler Herro scored 27 points, but missed two three pointers in the final nine seconds of the overtime. With this result the Lakers improved their record to 7-5 as they moved to 7th in the Western Conference.
Malik Monk after the match said, “I had this role a couple of times in Charlotte when a lot of guys got hurt, who has turned in three of the five highest-scoring performances of his career against Miami. I had to come in, play big minutes and facilitate and do all the things I normally don't do. I work on my game a lot, so I was really prepared for this moment.”
Davis said, “After that Portland loss, we took that personally .These last two games have definitely been fun. Guys are starting to realize how good of a team we are, and we just have to take that mindset to the floor.''
Golden State Warriors continued their fine start to the season with a 123-110 victory over the Timberwolves. With the help of a season high scoring performance from Andrew Wiggins as he dominated his former team with 35 points, Steph Curry also scored 25 points to go with six assists coming off a 50 point masterpiece Monday night against the Hawks. Last year's number one pick Anthony Edwards scored a career-high 48 points for Minnesota, hitting seven 3-pointers in the Timberwolves' sixth straight loss. With this result Warriors improve their record to 10-1 as they stay on top of the Western Conference
Steve Kerr after the match said, “Andrew was just fantastic, the aggression from the beginning of the game, loved his energy, Obviously he was pretty excited to play against his old team. We needed everything he brought us tonight. I thought Kevon Looney was just amazing. That's one of the toughest matchups in the league in Towns,''
Milwaukee Bucks late 3 point barrage helped them get a 112-110 victory over the New York Knicks. Pat Connaughton scored a season high 23 points, making three late 3 pointers to completely change the tie around, Jrue Holiday scored 18 points and Antetokounmpo had 15 points, 15 rebounds and eight assists for the Bucks, who had just enough to win for the second straight night. Derrick Rose had 22 points and seven assists and Immanuel Quickley scored 18 points as they tried their level best to get an unlikely victory over them, but the Bucks blew a 24 point lead before beating them. With this result, Bucks improve their record to 6-6 as they move to 8th in the Eastern Conference and the Knicks have somewhat lost their way over the past few weeks after getting off to an amazing start, Knicks have a record of 7-5 and currently stand 7th.
'It was good to be in a hostile environment, good to face some of the same things we faced against them last week and good to be able to come out victorious,'' Connaughton said
We kept our composure and that's who we are and it feels good,'' Giannis Antetokounmpo said.
Also read: NBA: Steph Curry erupts with a 50 point point performance against the Hawks as Lakers win against Hornets
The other significant results were:
- Cavaliers 94 - 97 Wizards
- Magic 90 - 123 Nets
- Celtics 104 - 88 Raptors
- Grizzlies 108 - 118 Hornets
- Bulls 117 - 107 Mavericks
- Nuggets 101 - 98 Pacers
The fixtures for tomorrow are:
- 76ers vs Raptors
- Jazz vs Pacers
- Clippers vs Heat
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
NBA: Lakers and Nets both lose their first match of the season as Giannis and Steph Curry both shine on the opening day.
(Basketball news) Steph Curry lit up the night with his first triple double since January 2016 as he scored 21 points 10 rebounds and 10 assists for Golden State Warriors who came back from 10 points to stun Lebron James and the new Los Angeles Lakers by 121-114 in the season opener.
The Lakers were dominant all throughout the first three quarters as LeBron James and Anthony Davis showed the world why they are the best duo in the league, James scored 34 points and 11 rebounds while Davis had 30 points and 11 rebounds. Ultimately it was the fourth quarter that proved to be decisive as they got out scored 38-29, no other Laker players even scored in double figures as Frank Vogel and his coaching team will try to get the best out of this roster. Newly added star player Russell Westbrook couldn’t make a big impression as he shot 4 of 13 for 8 points in his Lakers debut.
Giannis and the Milwaukee Bucks didn’t let their first title in their history distract them from their title defence as they breezed past the Nets in the opening night. Although Kevin Durant and Patty Mills scored 32 and 21 points respectively, the bucks were too strong in the end as they won 127-104. Although Bucks won the game, it came at a cost as their star player Jrue Holiday got injured with a bruised right heel and subsequently sat out the second half of the game.
Nets were missing star guard Kyrie Irving after his refusal to take the Covid-19 vaccine, James Harden had to step up but couldn’t deliver up to his expectations as he scored 20 points making 6 of 16 shots. On the other hand after Holiday’s injury, Khris Middleton and Pat Connaughton stepped up their game and each scored 20 points to secure a comprehensive victory over the Brooklyn Nets.
“We can’t give a team 20 more shots than us. Imagine coming to a game and saying, here, take the ball 20 times on offense before we get an offensive position. This is one game out of 82 of them. We’ll look at it that way. Every team will look at it that way. The Bucks won today, but they are still trying to fine-tune what they do, too. I think every team in the league is going to look at their first few games, first few weeks and see where their team is going and then make adjustments” said Kevin Durant after the loss to the bucks.
Antetokounmpo said. ''I'm excited. But now it's over with. We've got to focus on building good habits, keep moving forward and keep playing good basketball and hopefully we can repeat this again this year, next year and all the years that we're going to be here down the road.''
Brooklyn coach Steve Nash said. ''We weren't very good, If you're not playing at a high level against the champs, you're not going to win.''
In tomorrow’s matches we will see last year’s finalist Phoenix Sun take on Denver Nuggets as just one of the marquee fixtures tomorrow. The Nuggets will most likely be without last year's MVP Nikola Jokic as he is recovering from an ankle injury as they will have to heavily rely on Aaron Gordon to score the majority of the points to get a win over the rampant Suns who will head into the match with a fully fit squad. The New York Knicks take on the Boston Celtics in their opening fixtures, the Knicks last season were a surprise package making the playoffs after 10 years but this season after the acquisition of Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier they will be hoping to make the conference final at least. As for the Celtics they are going through a transition period as they will heavily rely on their young players Jason Tatum and Jaylen Brown to produce the goods.
The other fixtures for tomorrow are:
- Hornets vs Pacers
- Pistons vs Bulls
- Raptors vs Wizards
- Timberwolves vs Rockets
- Pelicans vs 76ers
- Grizzlies vs Cavaliers
- Jazz vs Thunder
- Trail Blazers vs Kings
- Spurs vs Magic
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.
Basketball player Pau Gasol announces retirement after 23 year long playing career
(Basketball news) Spanish basketball player Pau Gasol has retired from the sport after a long and successful career that has spanned 23 years. The 41 year old won two NBA Championships and three Olympic medals in his illustrious career. Speaking from an opera house in Barcelona, Gasol said “I'm going to retire from professional basketball. It's a difficult decision after so many years, but it's a decision that I really thought over." In attendance were his former teammates and family members, including his wife, his brother Marc and his young daughter.
Gasol made his professional debut in 1998 for Barca as a centre after which the 7 foot 1 inch player was signed by the Memphis Grizzlies in 2001. The Spaniard was selected in the All-Star team on six occasions and won the NBA title with the L.A Lakers in 2009 and 2010. He has also played for Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs, Milwaukee Bucks and spent four months at Portland Trail Blazers despite not playing due to injury.
Gasol had a successful playing career for his country, winning the World Championship in 2006 and European titles in 2009, 2011 and 2015. He helped Spain win a silver medal at the Olympic Games in 2008 and 2012 and guided his country to a bronze medal in 2016. Despite being injured for almost two years, Pau Gasol made a full recovery to participate in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics where Spain was eventually knocked out of the quarter-finals to eventual winners USA.
While announcing his retirement, Gasol spoke about his battle to overcome the stress fracture he suffered on his left foot in 2019. "Not many doctors thought I'd be able to recover but I'm a person who likes challenges and I wanted to fight to do the improbable. I got to the point where I was relaxed about my career ending, I was at peace, but, when things went well, I took the decision to sign for Barcelona, which wasn't in my plans. I managed to win the league with the club where it all began and where I made my debut. It's been very special."
The 41 year old also paid tribute to the late Kobe Bryant with whom he won two NBA titles. “I'd have liked him to have been here today but sometimes life is unfair. He taught me to be a better competitor, a real winner, I considered him like an older brother.”
Los Angeles Lakers vs Brooklyn Nets: The battle between two superteams
(Basketball news) As the new NBA season draws closer and the majority of the free agents found respective homes, the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets emerged as the strongest teams without a shadow of a doubt. Even though last year's NBA champions Milwaukee Bucks and finalist Phoenix Suns remain relatively unchanged from last season, both teams don’t possess the historical talent that the Lakers and Nets have.
The Lakers last season got eliminated in the 1st round of the playoff series by the Phoenix Suns but this season Rob Pelinka (General Manager) made sure that the same thing isn't repeated. At the end of last season, Lakers managed to pull off a blockbuster trade where they managed to get 9 times NBA all star and 2016-17 MVP Russell Westbrook from the Washington Wizards. With Lebron James and Anthony Davis already in the team, adding Westbrook makes them the team to beat in the Western Conference. With the Lakers adding former NBA all stars Carmelo Anthony, Dwight Howard and Rajon Rondo in free agency their roster looks more dangerous than before.
The Brooklyn Nets last season pulled off the trade of the decade by getting James Harden from Houston Rockets, adding to a roster which already contained Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. Last season, according to all experts, the Nets should have the NBA Championship but were beaten by the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference final, although injuries hampered the squad which eventually led to their downfall last season. This season Steve Nash (Coach of Nets) will be hoping that his stars remain fit as they have already added former all stars LaMarcus Aldridge and Paul Milsap to an already staked roster.
With both teams' ambition of winning a NBA championship last year not being fulfilled, the teams will be even more hungry to reach the NBA final this season. The Los Angeles Lakers have got back the championship core which won the NBA 2 years ago but the key advantage that the Lakers have over the Nets is the championship experience they have in their roster. On the other hand, the Nets have arguably the best trio in American sports history as on any given day James Harden, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Iriving can beat any team just based on their talent. As the fans eagerly wait for the start of the new season the NBA finals looks destined to be between these two teams unless and until injuries hamper them both. This is a site that not only the basketball fans want to watch but the sports fans in general will also tune in.
Also read: Virtual development program launched by NBA Academy for top female prospects from outside the US
The Los Angeles Roster:
Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, Marc Gasol, Trevor Ariza, Rajon Rondo,Dwight Howard, Wayne Ellington, DeAndre Jordan, Russell Westbrook, Kent Bazemore, Anthony Davis, Kendrick Nunn, Malik Monk, Talen Horton-Tucker.
The Brooklyn Nets Roster:
Kevin Durant, James Harden, Kyrie Irving, Joe Harris, Patty Mills, Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge, Paul Millsap, Nic Claxton , Bruce Brown, Cam Thomas, James Johnson, DeAndre Bembry, Jevon Carter, Day’Ron Sharpe.