The Celtics began the week with Jekyll and Hyde performances in an unsightly loss to the Wizards and a “holy sh–” dismantling of the Bucks. Boston confirmed that after they’re making photographs, they could possibly be unattainable to beat. Jayson Tatum appears to be on the right track because the playoffs strategy, averaging 36 factors this week on you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me 65/60/96 capturing splits.
After wins over the Pistons and Pacers, the Bucks shook off an embarrassing 41-point residence loss to the Celtics by dominating the 76ers on Sunday, with Giannis Antetokounmpo placing up 33 factors and 14 rebounds. Jrue Holiday scored a career-high 51 factors in Wednesday’s win over the Pacers.
Nikola Jokic solely performed in a single sport this week, a win over the 76ers with out Joel Embiid (boo!), and the Nuggets went 1-2 with out him. The win got here on Sunday towards the Warriors, when Michael Porter Jr. put up 29 factors and 11 rebounds on 4-for-8 3-point capturing.
The Sixers misplaced to the Nuggets in what would have been an MVP showdown if Joel Embiid had performed, then beat the Mavs and Raptors earlier than shedding to the Bucks on Sunday. Tyrese Maxey averaged 23 factors for the week on 54% 3-point capturing.
The Knicks obtained again on the profitable monitor with an undefeated week regardless of an harm to Julius Randle, highlighted by a 48-point efficiency from Jalen Brunson in a street win over the Cavs. Immanuel Quickley and Quentin Grimes have stepped up offensively with Randle out of the lineup.
It’s all occurring for the Suns, who noticed Kevin Durant return to the lineup en path to 4 straight wins this week (5 total). They nonetheless have not misplaced with Durant on the court docket, and he shook off a rusty return towards Minnesota to common 32.5 factors on 67/50/92 splits in his subsequent two video games. Yep, he is again.
The Grizzlies beat the Magic and Clippers this week, whereas additionally struggling blowout losses to the Clippers and Bulls. Ja Morant averaged 21 factors, however shot simply 40% from the sphere, as Desmond Bane led the best way with 25 factors per sport.
The Cavs misplaced to the Hawks and Knicks (with out Julius Randle) to start out the week, earlier than letting the depleted Pacers cling round just a little too lengthy in an eventual win on Sunday. Donovan Mitchell is gearing up for the playoffs, averaging 42 factors within the three video games this week on 55/47/85 splits.
The excellent news is the Kings lastly ended the longest energetic playoff drought in U.S. sports activities. The unhealthy information is, they completed the week by permitting 142 factors in a loss to the bottom-dwelling Spurs. De’Aaron Fox voiced considerations in regards to the protection after the loss, saying that it is one thing they’ve wanted to handle all season lengthy.
LeBron James is again and the Lakers look legit, taking down the Bulls, Wolves and Rockets this week. Anthony Davis scored no less than 38 factors in every sport, and shook off an ankle harm towards Minnesota that had Lakers followers fearing the worst. LeBron averaged 20 factors, 9 rebounds and 7 assists for the week.
The Warriors beat the Pelicans and Spurs to start out the week, however missed a chance for a win towards the Nuggets with out Nikola Jokic on Sunday. Instead, Klay Thompson’s potential go-ahead 3-pointer caromed off the again rim and Golden State suffered yet one more street loss. Thompson averaged 24 factors for the week on 42% 3-point capturing, whereas Steph Curry put up 31 per sport on 43% capturing from deep — Splash Brothers, certainly.
Despite a troublesome schedule, the Pelicans proceed surging towards the postseason, profitable seven of their final eight. They beat the Nuggets (with out Nikola Jokic) in Denver this week, and withstood an onslaught from Kawhi Leonard in Saturday’s victory over the Clippers. Brandon Ingram is solely on one other planet, placing up 30.5 factors, 7.3 assists and seven.3 rebounds per sport this week on 55/50/90 capturing splits.
The spotlight of the Clippers’ week was a formidable street victory over the Grizzlies with out the providers of Kawhi Leonard, by which Russell Westbrook put up a throwback 36-point efficiency because the staff shot 22 for 37 from 3-point vary. Overall they went 2-2 for the week, and are holding regular with out Paul George.
An enormous week for the Nets when it comes to probably avoiding the play-in, as they beat the Rockets, Hawks and Jazz. Mikal Bridges put up 33 factors per sport on 46% 3-point capturing, whereas Cam Johnson added 22 factors per sport.
The Hawks beat the Cavs and Mavs this week (too unhealthy they could not discover one other staff that rhymes), whereas falling to the Nets. Trae Young solely had 10 factors in 32 minutes within the loss, a complete head-scratcher contemplating the Hawks are combating for essential play-in positioning.
The Raptors handily beat the Heat and Hornets this week, with a loss to the 76ers in between. The offense was spectacular, placing up 124 factors per 100 possessions, led by 25 factors per sport from Pascal Siakam. Fred VanVleet dished out a franchise-record 20 assists in Sunday’s win over Charlotte, to go together with 20 factors.
After shedding to the Clippers and Lakers to start out the week, the Bulls bounced again with blowout wins over the Hornets and Grizzlies. Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan every averaged 24 factors per sport, whereas Nikola Vucevic put up 21 factors and 9.5 rebounds per sport.
The Heat prolonged their shedding streak to a few video games after defeats by the hands of the Raptors and Knicks to start out the week, and Jimmy Butler wasn’t about to allow them to lose 4 straight. He went off for 36 factors and 12 assists on 12-for-16 capturing in Saturday’s win over the Mavericks to get Miami again on monitor.
A poorly timed sickness is working via the Wolves locker room, leading to three straight losses this week, together with a disastrous effort towards the tanking Blazers on Sunday. If there’s an upside to a tough week, it is that Anthony Edwards lastly obtained on monitor within the loss to Portland, placing up 37 factors on 15-for-30 capturing.
Orlando beat the Wizards and Pistons this week, whereas shedding to the Grizzlies, to make it 5 wins of their final six video games. Rookie of the Year front-runner Paolo Banchero stored up his current streak of environment friendly play, averaging 23 factors for the week on 43% 3-point capturing.
Making the play-in is probably not the precedence for the Thunder, however it will put a ribbon on a formidable season. Going 1-3 this week did not assist their trigger — fortunately the Mavericks aren’t doing something to realize floor. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander solely performed in two of the video games, however he averaged 39 factors on 50% capturing.
The Jazz went 1-3 this week, with their solely win coming towards the lowly Spurs. Talen Horton-Tucker went off for a career-high 41 factors on 6-for-11 3-point capturing within the win.
Well, the Wizards shocked the world with an enormous victory over the Celtics with out Bradley Beal and Kyle Kuzma, however then they sat Kristaps Porzingis and misplaced to the Magic and Knicks. Corey Kispert put up 24 factors per sport on 52% capturing for the week.
There was a quick glimmer of hope for the Mavs after they blew out Indiana to start out the week, however that was shortly squashed with losses to the 76ers, Heat and Hawks. Kyrie Irving mentioned Dallas’ playoff scenario was ‘a little bit of a clusterf—‘ and it is exhausting to place it every other approach.
The Pacers are in a little bit of operation shutdown, as Tyrese Haliburton and Myles Turner missed all 4 video games this week. Indiana was capable of pull out a win towards the Thunder, nevertheless, with seven of the 9 gamers who obtained in scoring in double-figures, led by a near-triple-double of 21 factors, 9 rebounds and eight assists from TJ McConnell.
Just whenever you suppose the Blazers are going to lose each sport by 30 for the remainder of the season, they pull out a gritty, miraculous street win over the Wolves on Sunday. Rookie Shaedon Sharpe has thrived because the skeleton crew’s predominant offensive possibility, placing up 24 factors, six rebounds and 5 assists per sport this week on 38% 3-point capturing.
It regarded like one other winless week for the Spurs, after which BOOM! They dropped 142 factors in a street win over the Kings on Sunday, with out Keldon Johnson or Devin Vassell within the lineup. Doug McDermott led the staff with a 30-piece, whereas Julian Champagnie added 26 and Dominick Barlow had a double-double with 12 factors and 10 rebounds (I promise these are actual NBA gamers).
The Hornets continued taking part in spoiler with a win over the Thunder to start out the week, however got here again all the way down to Earth in losses to the Bulls and Raptors by a mixed 50 factors. Svi Mykhailiuk has been a pleasant story, averaging 20 factors this week on 47% 3-point capturing with all the additional alternative. James Bouknight scored 20 factors or extra in consecutive video games for the primary time in his profession.
The Rockets beat the Pistons this week, however the different three video games did not go so properly. Kevin Porter Jr. has come on of late, placing up 27.5 factors per sport this week on 50% 3-point capturing.
The Pistons misplaced all 4 video games this week, together with one to the Rockets which — on paper no less than — ought to have been winnable. Jaden Ivey scored a career-high 32 factors within the loss to Milwaukee, and shot 40% from 3-point vary this week.
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