The Dallas Mavericks are trembling to an overtime win in San Antonio. Maxi Kleber can breathe a sigh of relief after a dropout. The Los Angeles Lakers, on the other hand, are embarrassed without Anthony Davis with another basement kid.
The Philadelphia 76ers win in Cleveland and De’Aaron Fox sinks another game winner in Chicago.
Cleveland Cavaliers (44-28) – Philadelphia 76ers (46-22) 109:118 (BOXSCORE)
- In the direct duel for third place in the East, the Sixers fended off the Cavs’ attack. This was possible thanks to a good final phase and an important challenge from coach Doc Rivers. 4:30 minutes before the end, Joel Embiid fouled out after an alleged foul against Evan Mobley, but a little later the refs reversed their decision. Embiid stayed in the game and the Sixers rocked it home.
- The Cavs then attacked the center consistently and came back to -3 before Tyrese Maxey took the air out of the game with a deep three. James Harden, who recorded 13 of his 28 points (8/18 FG, 12 assists) in the final section, finally made everything clear with four converted free throws. The Sixers also secured the tiebreaker against the Cavs (2-1).
- Cleveland missed Jarrett Allen again, even as the hosts tried their best against Embiid. Mobley (13, 12 rebounds) hardly had a chance in a one-on-one, instead Embiid was doubled or even tripled. It didn’t help much, the MVP candidate scored 36 points (12/19), grabbed 18 rebounds and blocked 4 throws. The 6 turnovers were the only flaw.
- Maxey (23) converted five threes, and Shake Milton (11, 3/3 3P) from Downtown also played well. For the Cavs, Donovan Mitchell (21, 9/19) was the best scorer of the starters, the day before in Charlotte the guard had been suspended. Caris LeVert contributed 24 points from the bench, while Darius Garland (15, 6/17) missed the shot.
Miami Heat (38-33) – Memphis Grizzlies (41-27) 138:119 (BOXSCORE)
- The Heat needed a win like that again. Against Memphis, the Heat got down to business in the third quarter and led by up to 28 points. It was only the sixth time this season that the Heat won in double figures. Bam Adebayo led his colors with 26 points (10/15) and 8 rebounds.
- Miami moves up to sixth place (Brooklyn) in two games and knew how to convince collectively. Seven players scored in double digits, including Tyler Herro (24) and Jimmy Butler (23, 6/11 FG, 11/12 FT, 8 rebounds). Kyle Lowry got 8 points in 20 minutes as a reserve.
- The Grizzlies, on the other hand, are 3-3 without Ja Morant but had no chance this time. Jaren Jackson Jr. led the visitors with 25 points and 9 rebounds, while Desmond Bane (11, 4/11, 5 TO) lagged behind. Luke Kennard (14) sank four threes coming from the bench.
Chicago Bulls (31-37) – Sacramento Kings (41-27) 114:117 (BOXSCORE)
- What a closing phase in Chicago and in the end it was once again De’Aaron Fox who got the coals out of the fire for the Kings in the end. With the buzzer, the point guard sank the last shot with a stepback three-pointer over Ayo Dosunmu of the game and crowned the strong last twelve minutes, in which he scored 15 of his 32 points (12/17 FG, 4/6 trebles).
- But that wasn’t even the best value in the final section, because DeMar DeRozan also threw everything into the balance on the other side. It was also the forward who leveled the game with 13 seconds to go after Kessler missed Edwards’ free throw. At 114-110, Harrison Barnes committed the cardinal sin of fouling DeRozan in a three-pointer. This even fell in and DeRozan completed the four-point game shortly thereafter.
- DeRozan scored 16 of his 33 points in the last twelve minutes, with support from Zach LaVine (25, 7/22) and Nikola Vucevic (20, 8/22, 14 rebounds), who were inefficient. In general, the Bulls still hit 39 percent from the field, but also forced 20 turnovers. Domantas Sabonis (14, 17 rebounds, 10 assists) set up another triple-double for the Kings, while Malik Monk contributed 19 points from the bench to the win.
Houston Rockets (17-52) – Los Angeles Lakers (34-36) 114:110 (BOXSCORE)
- Yesterday, after the win in New Orleans, the Lakers emphasized that it was worth nothing if you did your homework in Houston and the Lakers actually lost their feathers in Texas without the rested Anthony Davis. Kevin Porter Jr. led the Rockets with 27 points (11/16), 9 rebounds and 6 assists.
- The Rockets pulled away in the first quarter and at times led by up to 18 points, as the Lakers completely lacked ring protection without Davis. The Rockets scored 78 points in the zone and pulled to the basket almost at will. At the beginning of the final period, the Lakers reduced again to -4, but two threes in a row by Jabari Smith Jr. (18, 6/17) took the wind out of the sails of the comeback.
- With 7 seconds left, Houston led by +10 but then conceded a three from Malik Beasley (16) as Austin Reaves (24, 6/14 FG, 11/13 FT) managed a steal and flagrant fouled Porter Jr. It didn’t matter in the end though.
- Alperen Sengün marked 13 points and 9 rebounds, Kenyon Martin Jr. had 16 points. D’Angelo Russell (18, 5/17, 7 assists) hit little for the Lakers, it looked similar for ex-rocket Dennis Schröder (16, 3/10 FG, 10/12 FT).
Minnesota Timberwolves (35-35) – Boston Celtics (48-22) 102:104 (BOXSCORE)
- It wasn’t nice again, but the Celtics are certainly happy to take this win with them. Jaylen Brown led Boston to a narrow away win with 35 points (12/24, 10 rebounds), despite the Celtics scoring just 40 percent from the field. In the end it was Jayson Tatum (22, 4/16 FG, 14/16 FT, 12 rebounds) who secured victory with a few free throws.
- But it could have ended differently and the Wolves foamed over the controversial final phase. With 2.2 seconds remaining, Grant Williams won a jump ball against Rudy Gobert at 101-99 in favor of the Celtics, but this didn’t look very clean. Anthony Edwards and Kyle Anderson felt the same way, both complained so bitterly that they were ejected by refs.
- Boston was already leading by 14 points in the third quarter, but the Wolves were getting closer. Edwards had 28 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists, while Rudy Gobert (15, 6 rebounds) did well defensively. Besides the Jays, only Al Horford (11) and Malcolm Brogdon (12) scored double digits for Boston, while Rob Williams was still missing.
San Antonio Spurs (18-51) – Dallas Mavericks (35-35) 128:137 OT (BOXSCORE)
- So the Mavs can still win without Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving. In San Antonio, however, the Mavs again didn’t cover themselves in glory and also needed an overtime against the basement kid from the West. In OT, the strong Christian Wood (28 points, 13 rebounds) made everything clear. However, the Mavs should have closed the sack sooner.
- Not entirely uninvolved was Maxi Kleber (3, 1/4), who threw a throw-in across the field at +2 with 1.8 seconds to go. Spurs took advantage of this and equalized with a fine alley-oop play by Keldon Johnson (27, 11/25) for overtime. There, the Mavs played it down seriously, Reggie Bullock (20, 6/10 3P, 13 rebounds) converted two three-pointers, among other things.
- Anyway, scoring wasn’t the problem for the Mavs, who hit over half of their attempts. Josh Green (21, 9/18, 7 assists) showed good approaches again, Dwight Powell (22, 8/8) got some easy shots. Rookie Jaden Hardy (22, 5/17) improved greatly in the second half, helping Dallas close a nine-point deficit in the last four minutes of regular time.
- The key, however, was Powell’s offensive rebounds, which the Spurs couldn’t get a grip on. For the hosts, rookie Malaki Branham added 20 points from the bench, Romeo Langford scored 17 points.