The Memphis Grizzlies had no mercy for Oklahoma City, signing in passing a points gap never seen in the NBA.
Memphis topped Oklahoma City 152-79, with a 73-point gap the biggest in NBA history, the North American Basketball League, on Thursday.
For his part, Phoenix also set a record. Never before have the Suns signed eighteen consecutive victories. They inflicted on this occasion an 18th defeat in 22 games to the worst student in the Detroit class (114-103) and have the best current record of nineteen wins and three losses. Phoenix will have a whole other challenge to meet Friday on the floor of Golden State, second in the West (18 v-3d), in search of revenge after defeat Tuesday in Arizona.
The Grizzlies became the first team to win an NBA game with a more than 70 point advantage. The previous record was a 68-point difference (148-80), set by the Cleveland Cavaliers against the Miami Heat on December 17, 1991.
American Jaren Jackson Jr led the assault with 27 points, helped by strong Spanish winger Santi Aldama, author of 18 points and 10 rebounds.
In total, nine Grizzlies players scored more than ten points, in front of the more than 18,000 spectators, in heaven, gathered at FedExForum in Memphis.
The Grizzlies, who led 72-36 at the break, were up to 78 points in the game (145-67), the biggest gap recorded in the NBA since the 1996-1997 season.
As for the Thunder, this new record for the most heavily beaten in the NBA is added to the equally inglorious one for the heaviest gap recorded at home (57 points, on May 1 against the Indiana Pacers 95-152) .
OKC apologizes for having played without injured star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. The Thunder have six wins in twenty-two games and recorded an eighth loss in a row. In his seven previous defeats the average margin was only 13 points.
Toronto created a surprise by defeating defending champions Milwaukee 97-93. The Bucks played without Giannis Antetokounmpo (calf pain), double MVP in 2019 and 2020 and MVP of the 2021 Finals. Jrue Holiday’s 26 points, Khris Middleton’s 22 and Bobby Portis’ 15 could not compensate for the joint efforts of Fred VanVleet (29 pts), Pascal Siakam (20 pts) and Scott Barnes (13 pts) and the defense of the Raptors (10 interceptions and 7 blocks). Milwaukee’s winning streak ended at eight wins and Toronto’s negative streak ended at five.
By beating New York 119-115, Chicago (15 v-8 d) grabbed second place in the East (behind Brooklyn (15 v-6 d), in a meeting marked by 34 points of DeMar DeRozan, and Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic’s 27. The Knicks may have regrets, closing a 21-point gap to tie at 111-111 before losing.
San Antonio took full advantage of the absence of Blazers All-Star Damian Lillard and largely dominated a Portland team that was quickly resigned 114-83. The Spurs won their third straight game but their record of seven wins and thirteen losses puts them only twelfth in the West.