Three nights, two games, two incredible finishes for Suns & Jazz, while James puts Lakers on his back and more.
Happy Monday ☀️
Holiday week in the U.S. Let’s get you started right.
THE LINEUP 🏀 ph646
- Monday must-see 🔥
- KD, LBJ get clutch wins 🥶
- Sunday whiparound 🌪️
- Weekend rewind ⏪
- Ant-Man rising 🐜
📲 Knicks-Wolves, 8 ET, NBA App
📲 7 More Games In NBA App
🏆 Tournament Returns Tues.
- MONDAY MUST-SEE
- Another Suns-Jazz thriller: Phoenix beat Utah by three for the second time in three nights. Kevin Durant had 39 points and a game-clinching block on Lauri Markkanen’s potential game-tying 3 at the 2OT buzzer, thanks to a Suns challenge
- KP joins KD with a game-winning block: Kristaps Porzingis hit the go-ahead dunk, then sealed the Boston win with a block on Ziaire Williams’ potential game-tying jumper
- King Me: LeBron’s emphatic dunk got the L.A. crowd hyped as he scored 13 points in the fourth quarter. None was bigger than the last one from the free throw line
- Sometimes 4 beats 5: Check out Lonnie Walker IV’s dunk against the entire Sixers squad … from the overhead angle
- Tatum on Spin Cycle: If Jayson Tatum’s spin move isn’t on opposing scouting reports already, it will be after Sunday’s pair of spin moves to driving dunks
- OKC makes history: The Thunder became the first team ever to shoot 60+% from the field, 60+% from 3 and 100% from the line in a single game
- KD, LEBRON DELIVER CLUTCH WINS
☀️ Suns 140, Jazz 137 (2OT)
▶️ Recap | PHX 7-6, UTA 4-9
Three nights. Two games. Two incredible finishes.
Two three-point wins for Phoenix. This one in two overtimes.
- Phoenix nearly won it in regulation, but Markkanen recovered a Jordan Clarkson’s blocked 3-pointer (by KD) and converted the layup to tie it
- Phoenix nearly won it in overtime, but Collin Sexton hit the putback off Keyonte George’s missed runner to force a second OT
- Phoenix finally won it in double overtime, on a game-sealing block by Durant on Markkanen
- Durant (39 pts, 8 reb, 10 ast) and Markkanen (38 pts, 17 reb) shared an embrace after the deciding play
- KD scored eight of Phoenix’s 13 points in 2OT, but it Grayson Allen’s 3 that proved to be the game-winner
🌇 Lakers 105, Rockets 104
▶️ Recap | LAL 8-6, HOU 6-5
- L.A. got a pair of clutch 3s from LeBron and Austin Reaves, the latter with 23.7 seconds left to put L.A. up three
- Houston kept answering, with Alperen Sengun hitting a game-tying hook over LeBron with four seconds left
- LeBron iced the game with a free throw with 1.9 left
- Milestone: LeBron passed Clyde Drexler for eighth all-time in steals
🏆 What’s next?
Back to West Group A action in the In-Season Tournament for the Suns, Lakers and Jazz on Tuesday.
- Utah (2-1) and L.A. (3-0) meet in their Group Play finale. The Lakers lead the Group, but the Jazz would take first with a win (based on tiebreakers)
- Phoenix (1-1) has a must-win game against Portland to stay in contention
- SEVEN MORE GAMES IN 90 SECONDS
🍀 Celtics 102, Grizzlies 100
▶️ Recap | BOS 11-2, MEM 3-10
- Kristaps Porzingis delivered in the clutch to lift Boston to its sixth-straight win. First, the go-ahead bucket on a cutting two-hand jam. Then, sealing the win in the final second with his sixth block. Watch the final 6:07
🔔 Sixers 121, Nets 99
▶️ Recap | PHI 10-3, BKN 6-7
- Philly is the only team with two players on the Kia MVP Ladder – No. 3 Joel Embiid and No. 8 Tyrese Maxey, who both posted double-doubles
🦖 Raptors 142, Pistons 113
▶️ Recap | TOR 6-7, DET 2-12
- It was a game for the record books for the Raptors – they scored the third-most points in franchise history and set a franchise record with 44 assists, with eight players with 3+ dimes
👑 Kings 129, Mavericks 113
▶️ Recap | SAC 8-4, DAL 9-5
- In a matchup of All-Star duos, Sacramento’s Domantas Sabonis (32) and De’Aaron Fox (30) combined for 62 to outpace Dallas’ Luka Doncic (25) and Kyrie Irving (23)
⚔️ Cavs 121, Nuggets 109
▶️ Recap | CLE 7-6, DEN 9-4
- Donovan Mitchell missed his second-straight game, but Cleveland still got its third-straight win, defeating Denver behind 26 from Darius Garland
⛈️ Thunder 134, Blazers 91
▶️ Recap | OKC 10-4, POR 3-10
- The Blazers scored the game’s first bucket, but it was all OKC from then on. SGA scored 28 as the Thunder led by as many as 47 points in their fifth-straight win
🔮 Magic 128, Pacers 116
▶️ Recap | ORL 8-5, IND 7-5
- The Magic jumped on the Pacers from the opening tip, scoring the game’s first 11 points, then cruised to their third-straight win. Paolo Banchero had 24 points, including this steal and poster dunk
- THE WEEKEND IN 90 SECONDS
Lodi646 review Between Daylight Savings Time ending and the holiday season starting, we’re entering that time warp phase of the calendar.
So, in other words, it’s not just you.
Get your bearings this Monday by catching up on what you might have missed.
5 BIG THINGS FROM FRIDAY
- Group Play past halfway point: Just three Group Play nights left. The In-Season Tournament Knockout (aka single-elimination) Rounds start in just two weeks. Catch up on standings before games pick back up Tuesday
- Lakers first to 3-0: L.A. has sole possession of first in West Group A, but they’ll need to beat the Jazz on Tuesday to keep it.
- Jokic nabs and NBA first: Though the Nuggets took their first Tournament loss, the Joker put up a 26-pt, 16-reb, 18-ast statline that hadn’t happened in NBA history
- Harden’s 4-point play wins it: Down three late, the Beard drilled a step-back hoop & harm to break the Clippers’ six-game losing streak and earn their first Tournament win
- Drake on the call: Drizzy joined the Raptors-Celtics broadcast to call the closing minutes
5 BIG THINGS FROM SATURDAY
- Clutch buckets everywhere: Four of the six games saw big time buckets down the stretch, from Chet Holmgren tying it at the buzzer, to KAT’s winner, to Giannis and DeRozan icing it
- Chet in rare company: Chet became the second rookie in franchise history to go 35-10-5, joining Kevin Durant. He and SGA also became the last Thunder teammates under 26 since KD and Russ to have 35+ in a game
- 1st time for the Wolves: Minny’s tied for first in the West at the 12-game mark for the first time in history
- Giannis passes Garnett: Antetokounmpo became the youngest player in NBA history to reach 16,000 points, 7,000 rebounds and 3,000 assists, passing Kevin Garnett – a player Giannis idolized because he had “fire in his eyes”
- More Wemby history: Victor Wembanyama’s 8 blocks (!) made him the fourth Spur with 15+ pts, 10+ reb & 8+ blks in a game. The others? David Robinson, Tim Duncan and Artis Gilmore
- EDWARDS: FROM ‘THAT’S ALL YOU GOT?’ TO ‘THE GUY’
Steve Kerr wasn’t impressed.
When Anthony Edwards worked out for the Warriors before the 2020 Draft, Kerr made his feelings known.
- “Before he came I thought I was working hard,” Edwards said earlier this fall. “I was going through the drills and he kept stopping them like, ‘that’s all you got?’
- “I’m like ‘bruh I’m going as hard as you want me to go. What you want me to do?’” Ant said. “I’m sweating crazy. He’s like ‘you gotta see Steph and KD and Klay work out.’”
Later that night, Kerr and Warriors staff went out to dinner with Edwards and told him that they wouldn’t have taken him No. 1 if they had that pick.
It changed Ant from that day on.
- Said Edwards: “Me and my trainer were home after dinner. We were just talking like ‘we gotta pick it up. I don’t know how, I don’t know what we gotta do, but we gotta pick it up.
- “I think after that, man, I became a madman in the gym.”
Kerr got another front-row seat this summer, coaching Edwards at the FIBA World Cup. As Ant routinely stole the show, Kerr said, simply:
- “He’s unquestionably the guy. He knows it. Now the rest of the team knows it.”
That’s becoming more and more true in Edwards’ NBA career, with AntMan starring for a red-hot Wolves team.
- How It Started: Drafted on a Zoom in 2020, Ant came into the league as a well-known athlete
- How It’s Going: He’s improved in virtually every stats category in each of his four years. Scoring more, and more efficiently. Going from 33%to 39% from 3-point range. Better in free throws, rebounding, assists
- Preseason Hype: Ant had a huge wave of anticipation around his 2023-24 season, with NBA GMs picking him as the player most likely to break out
- He’s On His Way: Currently sixth in the NBA.com MVP Ladder, Edwards ranks 12th in the league in scoring – and 12th in NetRtg among players with 30+ mpg. The Wolves are 19 points better per 100 with him on the floor vs. off. 19!
Said Charles Barkley on Inside the NBA last week: “He is a star. And he is ascending.” Lodi646 app
Catch him today when the Wolves take on the 8-5 Knicks at 8 ET in the NBA App
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