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BBNBA: The Skal Game

(Photo via Bruce Ely / Trail Blazers)

Good afternoon, folks. Skal Labissiere waited until the very last game of the regular season to finally show out. Let’s talk NBA.

RECAP

  • Welcome to the final regular season BBNBA recap post. The season is far from over with the playoffs tipping off on Saturday, but there was still plenty to talk about on the final day of the 2018-19 season. There were several notable names who were held out for rest/health reasons, such as Karl-Anthony Towns, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Bledsoe, and Enes Kanter, but the reserves more than picked up the slack.
  • Before we get into the monster performance Skal put up on Wednesday, let’s start from the top.
  • Starting in Atlanta, where Isaac Humphries played in his fifth consecutive game to end the Hawks season. Unfortunately, he only saw a little over one minute of action but still managed two points and a rebound. Humphries ends his stint with the Hawks averaging 3.0 points and 2.2 rebounds in over 11 minutes per game.
  • Bam Adebayo played only 18 minutes for the Miami Heat, who decided to roll with veteran Udonis Haslem to cap off their season. The former Kentucky big still managed 10 points and six rebounds. Dwyane Wade finished off his NBA career with a 25-point triple-double.
  • The rookie season for Kevin Knox ended the same way it began – with a poor shooting game. Knox shot 3-12 from the field and 0-6 from deep for nine points to go along with seven rebounds. Knox needed the offseason to get here A.S.A.P.
  • Jamal Murray and the Denver Nuggets can officially prepare for the franchise’s first playoff appearance since 2013 after finishing off the Minnesota Timberwolves at home. Murray posted 17 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists for Denver.
  • The Los Angeles Clippers apparently didn’t want the regular season to end, as they needed overtime to knock off the Utah Jazz, 143-137. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander registered eight points, two rebounds, three assists, and two steals to complete an outstanding rookie season. And even though I don’t want to mention it, I will, because Grayson Allen scoring 40 points is… surprising. Not because it took him 30 shots to get there or because he shouldn’t even be on an NBA roster, but because he managed to go an entire basketball game without overextending his foot and chopping it into someone else’s ankles like an out-of-control Razor scooter. Now that is impressive. Shoutout to Grayson.
  • But now for the game of the night. The Portland Trail Blazers emptied the bench against the Sacramento Kings and it was… awesome. De’Aaron Fox still put up 17 points and nine rebounds on 8-10 shooting in a mere 16 minutes because there literally wasn’t a single member of the Blazers on the court who could stop him. Seriously, this was a borderline G League game at times. Willie Cauley-Stein put up eight points and five rebounds in only 17 minutes. The real fun, however, was the 40 minutes of Skal Labissiere I’ve eagerly been waiting to see. Skal led the BBNBA with 29 points, which somehow wasn’t a career-high (he posted 32 against the Suns in March of 2017), and added 15 rebounds, which tied a career-high. This was the first time Labissiere has seen real minutes since, well… last season. He shot 12-17 from the field against the Kings, drilled two threes, had a couple of insane putback dunks, and looked like the best version of himself I’ve seen since he was a rookie. The Kings also blew a 30-point lead after sitting the starters. But I honestly can’t even properly describe Labissiere’s play because it was something I haven’t seen from him all year. He was posting up, driving to the basket, draining stepbacks. The confidence was oozing. Now, he was going up against defenders such as Nemanja Bjelica and Caleb Swanigan – who did not look flattering in the Kings uniform – and his rookie teammate Anfernee Simons put up 37 points, as well. I still don’t know how good Skal is yet and all this game did was build up some hype, but he played a great game. Maybe he can sneak in for some playoff minutes.

  • Check out the full stat sheet below.

STATISTICS

PlayerResultPointsFG (3FG)Reb.Ast.StealsBlocksTOs+/-Mins.
Skal Labissiere (POR)136-131 W vs. SAC2912-17 (2-2)151212-940
De'Aaron Fox (SAC)131-136 L @ POR178-10 (1-1)19001+1916
Jamal Murray (DEN)99-95 W vs. MIN176-12 (3-7)87012+1634
Bam Adebayo (MIA)94-113 L @ BKN104-7 (1-2)60102-1018
Kevin Knox (NYK)89-115 L vs. DET93-12 (0-6)71003-2628
Willie Cauley-Stein (SAC)131-136 L @ POR83-3 (0-0)50000+1617
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (LAC)143-137 (OT) W vs. UTA83-6 (0-0)23201+524
Nerlens Noel (OKC)127-116 W @ MIL21-3 (0-0)22110+39
Malik Monk (CHA)114-122 L vs. ORL21-4 (0-2)23001-917
Isaac Humphries (ATL)134-135 L vs. IND21-1 (0-0)10000-11
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA)114-122 L vs. ORL00-000000-41
Alex Poythress (ATL)134-135 L vs. INDDNP-Ankle----------------
Hamidou Diallo (OKC)127-116 W @ MILDNP-CD----------------
Patrick Patterson (OKC)127-116 W @ MILDNP-CD----------------
Eric Bledsoe (MIL)116-127 L vs. OKCDNP-CD----------------
Jarred Vanderbilt (DEN)99-95 W vs. MINDNP-CD----------------
Trey Lyles (DEN)99-95 W vs. MINDNP-CD----------------
Enes Kanter (POR)136-131 W vs. SACDNP-CD----------------
Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)95-99 L @ DENDNP-Knee----------------
DeMarcus Cousins (GSW)117-132 L @ MEMDNP-Load Management----------------

TONIGHT IN THE NBA

None! The playoff bracket is officially set, too. I’ll have a detailed post outlining each matchup later in the day. Playoffs begin Saturday.

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Covering all things NBA. Follow me on Twitter: @ZackGeoghegan

3 Comments for BBNBA: The Skal Game



  1. Cats N Pats
    3:35 pm April 11, 2019 Permalink

    Skal is still my least favorite cat of the Cal era. Dude was an all-time softy.



  2. CatBlue in LR
    5:18 pm April 11, 2019 Permalink

    Zach–congratulations on not saying the playoffs kick off on Saturday. Many of your colleagues would have written that, sad as that is.



  3. bluecrowe
    6:06 pm April 11, 2019 Permalink

    I am glad the kids who went to UK will never have to get a job for the rest of their lives, but quite frankly none of care for these updates. Why would Skal do anything different than he did at UK. He played one passable game at the end of season one after months of frustration. It is amazing he does not fall down more.