LeBron-less Lakers fall in New York
The Lakers were down by as much as 25 against the Knicks, but entered the fourth quarter only down 83-81. They couldn’t hold onto their momentum, though, and failed down the stretch. Westbrook was pivotal in their third quarter run, scoring 18 points, making three triples, and dishing out three assists in that period alone. He finished with 31 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists.
However, Westbrook went cold down the stretch and made some bad decisions, like taking a quick three while the Lakers were down six with 30 seconds left, while the Knicks had no timeouts out remaining. The Lakers never led in the game, which they eventually lost 106-100.
Anthony Davis had 20 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists, but Talen Horton-Tucker had an awful night, finishing with 0 points and going 0 of 8 from the field. Carmelo Anthony had 12 points, but shot 3 of 14.
Julius Randle was the Knicks’ key man as usual, finishing with 20 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists, and he was backed up by Evan Fournier, who shot 8 of 14 and 6 of 9 from deep on the way to 26 points.
Tyler Herro almost outscores the Pistons in the fourth quarter in Heat comeback
I almost had to do a double-take on the box score for the day, because Kyle Lowry, Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo had such similar stats. They combined for 45 points, 24 rebounds and 18 assists.
The Heat’s star of the night, though, was Tyler Herro, who finished with 31 points, 8 rebounds and 3 assists off the bench. He made 12 of 21 shots and 4 of 8 from deep. He was instrumental in Miami’s comeback victory against the Detroit Pistons, who outscored them in each of the first three quarters. Herro almost single-handedly outscored the Pistons with 14 points in the fourth quarter as the Heat finished the final stanza 33-16 on the way to a 100-92 win.
With the way Herro’s been contributing off the bench, he’s going to get paaaaaaaaaaaid.
Luke Doncic comes back to provide Kristaps Porzingis with the help he needed for a W
Luka Doncic finally came back for the Mavericks, and quickly showed why they missed him during their rough three-game losing streak. Doncic had 26 points, 9 rebounds, 9 assists, a steal and 2 blocks. He caught fire in the third quarter, scoring 15 points to bring Dallas right back in the game.
Kristaps Porzingis finished with 30 points and 7 rebounds on 9 of 16 shooting. He was aggressive in attacking the basket, and made 10 of 10 free throws. He finished the game with a big red mark on on his face, but he’ll be happy with his performance.
Unselfish basketball continues to develop between Porzingis and Luka Doncic, which bleeds to the rest of their team. In a great possession in the fourth quarter, Porzingis got the ball at the free throw line, dished it out to Doncic, who then threw the touch pass to Dorian Finney-Smith for a three-pointer to give them a 100-92 lead.
The Mavericks played excellent defense down the stretch, and made it tough for the Clippers to score in the paint, either altering shots or just straight-up blocking them. Porzingis and Maxi Kleber were key cogs of that defensive performance. Unfortunately, they couldn’t continue that to end the game.
The Clippers still made it a game until the end, and Kleber split a pair of free throws to give the Clippers a chance to take their final timeout with 1.1 seconds left in the game. Paul George again showed that he was a big-time player as he made a long shot after getting the inbounds pass, and after review, the three ball counted to force overtime.
The Mavericks went on a 7-0 run to start the overtime period, and Porzingis made key contributions on both ends of the floor in that time. He showed the full repertoire, passing the ball, going after offensive rebounds, and scoring in the paint. The only point the Clippers scored was a technical free throw from Paul George.
Reggie Jackson had two weird played in OT, having two layups end up in wedgies on the opposing basket.
For the Clippers, George and Jackson combined for 57 points in the loss, but couldn’t produce any offence in overtime.
Porzingis was effusive in his praise for Doncic after the game, and if the Mavericks’ Euro Duo can continue to build their chemistry after a rather difficult first couple of season together, this could become a dangerous team by the potseason.