Great six games we had last night with a lot of the eastern conference playoff contenders playing against each other to help determine who’s going to play who at the end of the season!
The match up of the night did not disappoint, the Warriors as they always do show up when everybody expects them not to with a great win against the rockets.
The Hawks young core of Trae Young and John Collins are still rolling combining for a whooping 49 points with a big win against the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies will be quite annoyed as they look to win a couple more games to get lower odds of getting a high draft pick. This will allow them to convey their 2020 Pick to the Celtics if its outside of the top 5, with the pick being unprotected next year. So this was definitely no push-over win.
Oklahoma City Thunder vs Brooklyn Nets
The Brooklyn Nets came into Oklahoma shooting lights out, out scoring the Thunder 27-19 in the first quarter. Paul George still seems to be in a really bad slump missing a lot of his shots early on. Dinwiddie on the other hand was driving to the hoop with precision getting every foul call there was.
Things changed quick though as the Thunder is desperate for another win to get them above the rockets and into the 3rd seed. Westbrook was the dominating force for this game as he turned on his MVP mode and not only shot well from three point land going 4 of 8 but became the engine for the team with his rebounds and assists.
Paul George finally started to get into rhythm with help from Russ and ended the night with an efficient 50% shooting percentage and 25 points. The Nets definitely lost this game on the glass though with the Thunder amassing 16 offensive boards giving them a lot of second chance points. Jarrett Allen was boxed out by Adams all night that lead to Westbrook getting easy boards and the triple double.
Thunder Win 108 – 96
Top Scorer: Russell Westbrook – 31 Points
Top Assists: Russell Westbrook – 11 Assists
Top Rebounds: Russell Westbrook – 12 Rebounds
Orlando Magic vs Washington Wizards
The Wizards welcomed the Orlando Magic to their home court to try and keep their slim playoff hopes alive and last night’s performance signaled another heart beat for their chances. It was a tight contest all game, with the final score decided by 10 points but Wizards new addition Jabari Parker was unstoppable while Aaron Gordon was a black hole both on the offensive and defensive end.
Vucevic continues his great season amassing an impressive triple double but his team did not provide much help. Usual energetic Magic bench scorer Terrence Ross just could not get going only shooting 3 of 13 from the field and finishing the game with the worst plus minus score of all players with a -17.
While a simple look at the box score one might think that Bradley Beal helped them win the game with his 22 points, the real difference maker here was the Wizards surprisingly deep bench now. Jabari Parker the former Bucks rookie who was traded to the bulls and traded again earlier in the season to the wizards showed he still has what it takes to be a star player. He ended the night with a crazy 75% field goal percentage going 9 of 12 from the field and helped the Wizards go a nice run in the 2nd quarter that sealed the win for them.
Wizards Win 100 – 90
Top Scorer: Bradley Beal – 23 Points
Top Assists: TIED 7 – Bradley Beal, Tomas Satoransky and D.J. Augustin
Top Rebounds: Nikola Vucevic – 14 Rebounds
Golden State Warriors vs Houston Rockets
The Warriors headed into Houston missing their two time finals MVP in Kevin Durant and coming off another disappointing loss to the Suns. The Rockets on the other hand are red-hot, on a 9 game winning streak and holding on the 3rd seed. Many we’re basically calling this a lock for a Rockets win, Clint Capela even started talking smack on the Warriors claiming that they needed to show that they can play on a championship level. Like the old saying goes though you don’t want to provoke the sleeping dragon.
Stephen Curry got going early as he was splashing down points from everywhere in the 1st quarter, amassing a 10 point lead by the end of it. Chris Paul who always gets up for the Warriors games was not to be counted out either as he was driving to the hoop with ease.
The player of the match though was Demarcus Cousins, the new addition the Warriors core was a force to be reckoned. With Kevin Durant being out, the warriors effectively ran the triangle offense through boogie daring the defender to double team him for an easy kick out. With the shots falling for both Klay and Curry, there was really nothing the Rockets could do to contain them. Capela was no match for Cousins as he scored point after point with relative ease.
The rockets amassed a nice run at the end of the 4th quarter with chances to tie and go-ahead but unfortunately for them the shots did not go in leading to the warriors win.
Warrios Win 106 – 104
Top Scorer: Klay Thompson – 30 points
Top Assists: James Harden – 10 Assists
Top Rebounds: Clint Capela – 13 Rebounds
Detroit Pistons vs Miami Heat
The battle for the 7th and 8th seed in the Eastern Conference is extremely tight with the Pistons only 2 games ahead of the Heat and the Magic only a game behind the heat in the 8th seed. This was a monumental game for both teams and the heat knew this.
They put their foot on the gas early, amassing a 30 – 18 point run in the first quarter. Spoelstra who’s been doing great despite major injuries to his star players this season has run a team friendly offense relying on scoring from everyone. The Pistons replied quick though amassing a 31 – 24 point run in the second quarter.
The 3rd quarter effectively decided the game for both teams. The Pistons were shooting horrible all night but somehow kept themselves in the game, but scored a measly 8 points in the third while allowing 33 points scored on them. Blake Griffin looked like he did not care, barely even shooting the ball (shooting 4-9 for the game in total) while Reggie Jackson kept jacking up shots instead of passing it.
This was a great win for the Heat as they stave off the fast approaching Magic and take the 8th seed to themselves. The heat starting 5 looks like a great unit and Josh Richardson still continues to surprise us with his stellar play.
Heat Win 108 – 74
Top Scorer: Dion Waiters – 14 Points
Top Assists: Josh Richardson – 5 Assists
Top Rebounds: Hassan Whiteside – 11 Rebounds
UTAH JAZZ DEFEAT THE PHOENIX SUNS 114 – 97
ATLANTA HAWKS DEFEAT THE MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES 132 – 111
SportsTips.com PLAYER OF THE NIGHT: Russell Westbrook 31 Points, 11 Assists, 12 Rebounds, 3 Steals.