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BBNBA: Booker, Bledsoe Lead Teams to Blowout Wins

(NBAE | Getty Images)

(NBAE | Getty Images)

Good morning, folks. Devin Booker and Eric Bledsoe would like to make the All-Star team. Let’s talk NBA.

“Be sad. Be mad. Be frustrated. Scream. Cry. Sulk. When you wake up you will think it was just a nightmare only to realize it’s all too real. You will be angry and wish for the day back, the game back THAT play back. But reality gives nothing back and nor should you.” — Kobe Bryant

A friendly reminder, the NBA All-Star reserves will be announced on Thursday ahead of the Warriors-Celtics matchup on TNT. There’s a good chance that Bam Adebayo, Devin Booker, and possibly a third member of the BBNBA (KAT, Bledsoe?) make the final cut. Tune in.

RECAP

Big nights for Booker and Bledsoe

Both Devin Booker and Eric Bledsoe led their respective teams to blowout victories on Tuesday night. As previously mentioned, both players are viable All-Star candidates (although voting officially ended before Tuesday night’s games) and made one final statement before the rosters are announced.

Booker posted 32 points, six rebounds, nine assists, and two steals for the Phoenix Suns, who railed the Dallas Mavericks by a final score of 133-104 in the team debut for Willie Cauley-Stein. Booker shot 12-20 from the floor in a game that the Suns never trailed. It was Booker’s third consecutive game with at least 30 points. The former ‘Cat dropped 20 of his 32 points in the third quarter as Phoenix outscored Dallas 48-22 in that frame to secure the team’s 20th win of the season. The Suns won 19 games all of last season. Booker should be an All-Star this season for the first time in his career.

”It’s exciting just to be in this situation,” Booker said after the game about a potential All-Star bid. ”Every time I go out on the floor, I try to represent Phoenix, represent my last name in the best way possible and I think making All-Star would amplify that and give something that this city’s been waiting on for a long time.”

Cauley-Stein appeared in 12 minutes during his first game with the Mavericks, registering four points, three rebounds, one assist, and two steals.

As for Bledsoe, the Milwaukee Bucks guard led the BBNBA with 34 points in a hellacious beating of the Washington Wizards. The former ‘Cat was an efficient 11-20 from the field, adding six rebounds and 10 assists to his stat line. Milwaukee dropped 151 points on the Wiz while giving up 131 as Khris Middleton recorded a career-high of 51 points for the Bucks.

Milwaukee’s 88 first-half points and 151 total were both season-highs for the NBA’s league leaders.

Hornets win a doozy against Knicks

It wasn’t exactly a barnburner, but the Charlotte Hornets found a way to hold off the New York Knicks for a 97-92 victory. Trailing by as many as 13 points late in the second quarter, the Hornets found a way to come back and prevent the team’s ninth straight loss. The win ended the franchise’s longest losing streak since the 2014-15 season.

P.J. Washington struggled for the second game in a row, posting three points, eight rebounds, and four assists on a poor shooting clip of 1-9 from the floor (a common theme in this game). The rookie scored just three points in his previous outing, as well. Malik Monk – coming off two impressive scoring games – went for 13 points on 4-12 shooting in addition to two rebounds and two assists.

For the Knicks, Julius Randle came out on fire, scoring 12 of his 24 points in the first quarter of action. He finished with five rebounds and two assists while shooting 10-19 from the floor. If you didn’t know, Randle and Kobe were close friends. Randle grew up idolizing Kobe from an early age and played two seasons with him in Los Angeles.

Kevin Knox added just two points and one rebound on a 1-5 shooting mark. He also missed a dunk. Ugh…

Other notes

  • The Miami Heat and Boston Celtics went head-to-head on TNT with the latter coming out on top and earning an important win. Boston took down Miami, 109-101, handing them their first Eastern Conference loss at home. The Heat were 13-0 prior to the loss. Bam Adebayo went for 16 points and 10 rebounds on 7-10 shooting from the field while Tyler Herro added six points, five rebounds, and two assists.

Check out the full stat sheet below.

STATISTICS

PlayerResult PointsFG (3FG)Reb.Ast.StealsBlocksTOs+/-Mins.
Eric Bledsoe (MIL)151-131 W vs. WAS3411-20 (2-5)610102+2230
Devin Booker (PHX)133-104 W @ DAL3212-20 (2-4)69201+3630
Julius Randle (NYK)92-97 L @ CHA2410-19 (0-3)52103+336
Bam Adebayo (MIA)101-109 L vs. BOS167-11 (0-0)101112-433
Malik Monk (CHA)97-92 W vs. NYK134-12 (0-2)22001+523
Tyler Herro (MIA)101-109 L vs. BOS63-13 (0-4)52111-2028
Willie Cauley-Stein (DAL)104-133 L vs. PHX42-4 (0-0)31200+512
P.J. Washington Jr. (CHA)97-92 W vs. NYK31-9 (0-3)84111+230
Kevin Knox (NYK)92-97 L @ CHA21-5 (0-3)10010-511
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA)97-92 W vs. NYKDNP-CD----------------
Jarred Vanderbilt (DEN)96-104 L @ MEMDNP-CD----------------
Enes Kanter (BOS)109-101 W @ MIADNP-Hip----------------
Jamal Murray (DEN)96-104 L @ MEMDNP-Ankle----------------
Brandon Knight (CLE)111-125 L vs. NOPDNP-Knee----------------
John Wall (WAS)131-151 L @ MILDNP-Foot----------------
Darius Miller (NOP)125-111 W @ CLEDNP-Achilles----------------

TONIGHT IN THE NBA

7:00: Bulls @ Pacers

7:30 (ESPN): Pistons @ Nets

7:30: Grizzlies @ Knicks (Knox, Randle)

8:30: Jazz @ Spurs (JohnsonLyles)

10:00 (ESPN): Rockets @ Trail Blazers (Gabriel, Labissiere-out)

10:00: Thunder (Diallo, Gilgeous-Alexander, Noel) @ Kings (Fox)

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Covering all things NBA and UK Hoops. Follow me on Twitter: @ZGeogheganKSR