Good morning everybody happy Sunday and welcome back to another edition of Last Night In The NBA where we bring you up to speed on everything that went down from the night before in the Association. Chances are you’re good and hung over this morning which why this blog is the perfect thing to help you get to kickoff. There were 8 total games last night which means you'll have plenty of highlights to watch while you sit on the couch or toilet as you attempt to just get back to neutral. Saturday night gave us a little bit of everything in terms of NBA history, tight finishes, brilliant offensive performances, it pretty much had it all. If you were out and missed any of the action that's OK, here's what happened.
Brooklyn Nets (5-7) 117 vs Chicago Bulls (4-9) 117
With Kyrie Irving sitting out and the Nets finally winning, many people are saying this team is maybe better without him. I won't say it, I won't point out how they had lost 3 straight with him and suddenly look like the team we saw last year without him. I'm just happy for the Nets that they finally got to experience what balance and winning looks like. The starters were great, with nobody taking more than 15 FGA, four of the five had at least 10 and their 43 points in the fourth was why they won this game
things may have gotten a little iffy for them when they blew their early lead in that second quarter, and maybe you don't love how close things were against a rebuilding CHI team, but when you're 4-7 and were 1-5 on the road, you take any win you can get as you attempt to climb back to .500
For CHI, the good news is Zach LaVine looks like a beast and someone who could very well earn an All Star nod if he keeps scoring like this (yes, even players on bad teams make the all star team)
he led everyone with 38 points, and while Coby White is definitely a little sad today about his 3-13 performance off the bench and brutal late foul that may or may not have sealed their fate, how about the play of Wendell Carter Jr? Not bad!
it's just tough if you're CHI and you are trying to survive on 35/23% shooting with 19 TOs. For it to come at home isn't great, but hey young teams are gonna young team every once in a while.
Milwaukee Bucks (9-3) 102 vs Indiana Pacers (7-6) 83
On the bright side, the Pacers held Giannis to under 35, which seems like something nobody has been able to do lately. The downside is he had 26/13/6 on 10-17 shooting, hit 3 threes, and pretty much got whatever he wanted
The Bucks are one of those teams that can lose a major rotation player in Khris Middleton and just keep trucking along blowing teams out because of their depth. Guys like Brook Lopez and Eric Bledsoe step up
and they wait for that one quarter where they get their separation, tonight it was the 2nd where the defense tightened up and only allowed 14 points, and then the next thing you know MIL is up 10 and it's very rare they blow 10+ point leads. Plus you factor in the whole Giannis thing and it's no surprise this team took care of a middle of the East team while also improving to 6-2 on the road. Their shooting is still a little bit of a concern with Middleton out, another 11-39 performance from deep, but as you can see if they defend like this that won't matter one bit.
For IND, no Malcolm Brogdon which was unfortunate seeing as how this was his old team and I'm sure he would have balled out, and a rough 3-13 from Sabonis so what do you expect to happen. You're a smart stoolie, you know that you have to fire on all cylinders to beat this MIL team. Even with Myles Turner back
there simply wasn't enough offensive firepower. Just 32/35% splits is not going to cut it and neither is scoring under 23 points in 3 of the 4 quarters. Maybe it's just an off night, this team is 5-2 at home, but they certainly have some work to do now with guys back.
Charlotte Hornets (6-7) 103 vs New York Knicks (3-10) 102
The Knicks just can't get out of their own way can they. It's pretty remarkable actually. Look awesome playing DAL because revenge is a hell of a drug but once you get back to playing literally any other NBA team, even the worst of the worst they are back to being super pathetic. So weird you almost have to respect it. But hey, since it's officially tanking season in NYC, why not ignore the losses and spend more time focused on RJ Barrett who is turning into a legit beast
Say what you want, but that pick has worked out. Certainly better than the Kevin Knox pick last year I think we can all agree there. You also have to give a shoutout to Mitchell Robinson, who definitely fucked up his goot/ankle but powered through with a nice 17/12 off the bench
There is a lot of dysfunction with this team we all know that, but those two young pieces are legit and that should have Knicks fans excited. In terms of this game though, can't be losing to CHA at home. Be better.
For CHA, you may not have known the name heading into the season, but it's time you familiarize yourself with Devonte Graham
9 more threes, the game winner, this dude is single handedly the reason why the Hornets somehow have 6 wins. He's been their best player since the start of the season, they rightfully made him a starter and he's proving he can be a legit NBA scoring option given the opportunity.
They also got a great night from rookie PJ Washington
and not even Rozier's 6-16 could shoot them out of this one. It feels weird to say, but could this CHA team fuck around and snag an 8 seed or something? That's how things are trending and that sort of goes against everything we thought coming in.
New Orleans Pelicans (3-9) 94 vs Miami Heat (9-3) 109
I mean the Pelicans were 1-4 on the road coming in so I don't know what you expected considering MIA has been one of the best teams all year. It's just a tough time for them with no Brandon Ingram, no Josh Hart, no Lonzo, no Zion, and no Redick. That's basically their whole team outside of Jrue Holiday
So I was actually surprised this was even somewhat close at any point in this game. They did get a great performance off the bench from their prized rookie NAW
but a down third quarter really was too much for them to overcome which isn't their fault due to who was active but it was their reality.
For MIA, listen buy all the stock you can before it's too late. This team is legit, and not just because they beat NO but because it's been more of the same with them since the season started. Lock down defense, balanced scoring, and great play from their two young rookies
They've also had a huge leap season from Bam both as a defender and a playmaker. You knew he could dunk and rebound, but his passing is very much real as is his much improved defense. He's been just a big a part of this great start as anyone on this roster. MIA is now 5-0 at home and look like a team that is gunning for a top 3 seed.
Houston Rockets (10-3) 125 vs Minnesota Timberwolves (7-6) 105
Without Westbrook in the lineup, you knew James Harden was going to feast on this pathetic MIN defense and boyyyyy did he ever
you can hate his style if you want, but he only took 11 FTA in this game and still nearly dropped a 50 burger. Don't be a salty idiot and appreciate the historic offensive production you are witnessing, because it's pretty fucking insane
WILT! We are now in Wilt territory and anytime you do that it's impressive as hell.
Now because the Wolves can't stop a nosebleed other guys showed out as well
and just like that the Rockets are keeping pace with LAL and LAC as the best teams in the West. A run like what Harden is on is why Rockets fans will feel slighted when he still isn't talked about in the MVP conversation (it's mostly just been Giannis so far), and I think they have a point. What we are seeing is historic and sure it's ridiculous that he took 41 shots last night but man if nobody can stop you why not keep going to that well.
For MIN, no Wiggins which matters even if that feels weird to say, but KAT did bust out and dominate any big HOU threw at him
he finished with 27/15 on 9-15 shooting and Jake Layman who was filling in for Wiggins more than did his job
but in the end it's the same old story with this MIN team. They can't defend to save their lives. The lowest HOU ever scored was 29 points in the third quarter, and it doesn't matter what your shooting looks like if you turn it over 18 times and don't stop a nose bleed. To do it at home just makes it sting that much more.
Toronto Raptors (8-4) 102 vs Dallas Mavericks (7-5) 11
Now this was a fun matchup. Both sides going on big runs and it looked like both were going to have separation only to then immediately give that lead back. For the Raptors to hang around like this despite a 6-24 performance from Siakam was a surprise, but then you see that they got 50 from Norman Powell and FVV and it makes some sense
without them the Raptors get blown out and honestly after their big 2nd quarter to go from down 10 to up 7 you thought maybe they found a way to sneak this win out. But then to come out and score just 42 points in the second half, well they pretty much ran out of gas. Siakam most likely won't have too many more games where he has just 1 more FGM (6) than TOs (5), plus it's not like Dallas stinks so this was just one of those weird off nights in my opinion.
For DAL, stop me if you've heard this before but Luka and Porzingis were awesome
I could go on, but that pretty much sums it up nicely. Some good bench scoring from Wright and some efficient production form Curry at 5-7, but at the end of the day this team revolves around Luka/KP and if you can't stop one of them you most likely won't win.
Portland Trail Blazers (5-8) 121 vs San Antonio Spurs (5-8) 116
Did the Basketball Gods reward POR with this win since they signed Melo? It's hard to say. You could argue it was because Dame/CJ shook their dicks
you could argue that part of it was Whiteside matching LMA's production
you could also point to their fourth quarter defense, holding SA to just 20 points which allowed them to seal the deal. I mean it wasn't great that they blew their 18 point lead and were actually down 6 heading into the final quarter, but that's basically been their season. Very, very inconsistent. Nobody needed a win more than POR right now, so good for them for snagging it on the road. Now if they could just figure out how to win in their own building they may have something here.
For SA, this is starting to get troubling. Sure LMA had 30 and DeRozan had 16/7/5
but they were once again a combined -18. I cannot think of another pairing like this where the two best players cannot stop being negatives on the floor together. Nothing else about this team matters. They need to make a tough choice because this pairing is not working and hasn't for some time now. Do they flip DeRozan since they don't want to give him an extension? Their season is slipping quick, it's very un-Spurs like but that's the truth.
Atlanta Hawks (4-8) 101 vs Los Angeles Clippers (8-5) 150
That is not a typo. I did not forget to add the F/OT to that score. This 49 point beatdown and 150 piece happened in regulation in a real life NBA game. I won't cause you to vomit by showing you all the Hawks, just watch Trae
but dear god have some fucking professional pride for me one time ATL. How is your defense this nonexistent? I didn't even know this was possible to achieve in a 48 minute game but here we are. Just let Paul George & Co all up in that ass. Sprinkle in some 37/25% with 19 TOs and woof that's how this disaster happens.
For LAC, holy shit what an offense bukkake. Not just the 150 points, but the 53/51% shooting, the 17 3PM, the 30 assists on 50 FGM, just an unreal performance from everyone involved.
None more impressive than Paul George though, who made himself some NBA history with his 37 points in 20 minutes
no, you didn't read that wrong. He had 37 points in 20 minutes
Oh right, a healthy PG13 is an MVP and All NBA talent, people forget that. Just think, the Clippers didn't even have Kawhi for this game! Just imagine what this shit looks like when both of those dudes are on the floor together. Add in the depth
and this team is terrifying. Their record may not be great, but now that they are back to full strength I think we see the dominance everyone predicted this summer. 150 burger, holy moly.
And that's it! You are now all caught up with everything that went down last night in the NBA. We're back today with 6 more games today including some afternoon tips which is always nice. Hopefully this blog helped your hangover, have yourself a great lazy Sunday!