Excellent individual performances highlight a busy night in the NBA
It was a night in the NBA filled with so many memorable moments, it’s hard to keep track of them because the obvious headline was Warriors’ guard Stephen Curry making it rain from 3-point land (11-13 fgs) en route to a 54 point game. Oh yeah, he also added 7 assists and 3 steals into the mix. What is it about playing in MSG that when a player gets hot, the result is always scorching? It was no different for Curry last night, who looked absolutely unstoppable but unfortunately for Warriors fans, that only meant winning the battle as the Knicks took the victory 109-105. Part of that reason was Knicks’ center Tyson Chandler grabbing a career-high 28 rebounds (ten of them offensive) to go along with 16 points and a couple of steals. Curry will grab the headlines but it’s not easy to withstand a 50+ point game so credit to the Knicks for a much deserved victory.
MVP candidate Kevin Durant had a triple double (18 pts, 11 reb, 10 ast) and although it was relatively quiet, what was most impressive is that Durant had that stat line in only 27 minutes of play. Very impressive. The Thunder had dominant performance over the Hornets so no signs of slowing down for OKC. Last night featured two of the most unorthodox buzzer beaters that you will see this season. First we have Monta Ellis getting the roll on a ridiculous turn around 3-point shot in Houston to win the game. Then there’s Wesley Johnson hitting a 3 after being open on a cross court pass from Jermaine O’Neal against the Spurs to send then game into OT in San Antonio. Ellis clearly had the crazier shot but who would’ve guessed that Jermaine O’Neal would out-duel Tim Duncan down the stretch and be the key factor in the Suns victory on the road.
Some of the less attention grabbing headlines included a couple of players hitting career highs in points. Al Hortford (34 pts, 15 reb, 5 blk) set his mark during a Hawks victory over the Jazz. Lesser known but just as effective, the Pistons’ Brandon Knight set his career-high with 34 points against the Wizards so big ups to him. If you managed to stay up a bit, i’d have to say the most entertaining game of the night was the Nuggets taking down the Blazers 111-109 in Portland. Andre Iguodala had the best stat line (29 pts, 7 reb, 8 ast) but watching guards Ty Lawson and Damian Lillard go at each other in the back court was excellent basketball to watch. Something not excellent to watch was my Mavericks losing a 25 point lead (mostly in the 3rd) against the Grizzlies on the road. My eternal fanhood is the only reason that i’m watching the Mavs, hoping for some sort of miracle even as the mathematical probabilities of playoffs slowly dwindle away.
Top 10 plays in the NBA from last night: