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BBNBA: Booker Exits With Ankle Injury, Randle Scores 34

(Photo by Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE via Getty Images)

(Photo by Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE via Getty Images)

Good afternoon, folks. Can we please put a lifetime ban on injuries? Let’s talk NBA.

RECAP

  • Before we get into what happened to Devin Booker, let’s run through the recaps from a 12-game Wednesday night in the NBA.
  • Starting with Kevin Knox, who dropped 21 points and four rebounds on 7-13 shooting as his New York Knicks fell to the playoff-hunting Orlando Magic, 100-114.

  • In sad news, Isaiah Briscoe was waived by the Magic earlier on Thursday, preferring to sign Michael-Carter Williams for the remainder of the season. It’s a shame, honestly, considering Briscoe was playing the best basketball of his career before knee surgery cost him his season. But I would absolutely be shocked if Briscoe doesn’t find his way back onto an NBA roster next season, despite the injury concerns. He was a legitamite NBA role player in 39 games this season on a playoff team. Ban injuries (part 1).
  • The Miami Heat fell to the Boston Celtics 112-102 in what would have been a massive boost in its playoff odds had they been able to win in South Beach. Bam Adebayo posted a 12-point, 12-rebound double-double in addition to four assists and two blocks in 26 minutes.
  • In New Orleans, the Charlotte Hornets earned a must-win victory over the Pelicans, 115-109, despite Julius Randle going off for a BBNBA-high of 34 points in addition to his 11 rebounds and three assists. Anthony Davis (back) and Darius Miller (thigh) both sat out for the Pels.

  • Michael Kidd-Gilchrist started only his second game of the season for the Hornets, posting five points and five rebounds in 20 minutes while Malik Monk added nine points and six rebounds in 17 minutes. Now, let’s take another look at where the Eastern Conference playoff standings currently sit at. Also, keep in mind that the Pistons (without Blake Griffin) lost to the Pacers 89-108 in Detroit.

(Photo via NBA.com)

  • Let the race for mediocrity BEGIN! Winner gets the grand prize of being swept by the Bucks/Raptors/Sixers in round one.
  • Moving along, Karl-Anthony Towns overcame a rough four-game stretch (where he averaged 19.3 points on under 35 percent shooting from the field) with a 28-point performance and a Timberwolves win over the Dallas Mavericks. Towns shot 12-15 from the field while pulling in 13 boards, dishing out three dimes, and blocking three shots.

  • In Denver, the Nuggets dominated the San Antonio Spurs in a 28-point blowout after Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich was ejected 63 seconds into the game – the quickest ejection in NBA history. His postgame interruption of Nuggets head Mike Malone was “Classic Pop”.

  • As for the Cats involved, Jamal Murray posted 14 points, six rebounds, and 11 assists in 30 minutes. With the victory in hand, Trey Lyles and Jarred Vanderbilt saw some court action, as well. Lyles got the most out of his five minutes, scoring seven points on 3-5 shooting to go along with two boards while Vando was scoreless in four minutes, contributing one rebound and one assist.
  • In Phoenix, Devin Booker played only eight minutes before landing sideways on his ankle and simultaneously filling my tear ducts with a sad, watery substance. I won’t share the injury here, but Google it if you so choose. The good news is the X-rays came back negative, according to Shams Charania, and it looks to be just a sprained ankle. Phew. Ban injuries (part 2).
  • The Trail Blazers made light work of the Memphis Grizzlies in Portland behind 21 points and 15 rebounds from Enes Kanter. The former Kentucky big has averaged 17.6 points and 11 rebounds per game in five starts since the injury to Jusuf Nurkic. He also posts a defensive rating of 96.2 in those games with an offensive rating of 116.5 for a net rating of plus-20.3, which is… insanely good….? The Blazers are 4-1 in those games, albeit four of those five games have come against non-playoff teams and the one loss was against the Pistons, so I remain skeptical that Kanter is really helping the Blazers this noticeably, especially on the defensive end. We’ll see what happens come playoff time when the opposing team hunts Kanter on mismatches every other trip down the court.
  • And lastly, the Clippers were rung up by the Houston Rockets, 135-103, in L.A. Chris Paul even drilled a 60-foot jumper at the third-quarter buzzer just to rub in what was already decided. But Shai Gilgeous-Alexadner went out and did his thing, registering 20 points, four rebounds, four assists, and two steals on 8-16 shooting.
  • Check out the full stat sheet below.

STATISTICS

PlayerResult PointsFG (3FG)Reb.Ast.StealsBlocksTOs+/-Mins.
Julius Randle (NOP)109-115 L vs. CHA3412-19 (3-5)113214034
Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)110-108 W @ DAL2812-15 (0-0)133031+736
Kevin Knox (NYK)100-114 L @ ORL217-13 (3-5)41212-634
Enes Kanter (POR)116-89 W vs. MEM2110-15 (0-1)150302+2325
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (LAC)103-135 L vs. HOU208-16 (1-3)44203-832
Jamal Murray (DEN)113-85 W vs. SAS146-14 (1-4)611113+1630
Bam Adebayo (MIA)102-112 L vs. BOS125-9 (0-1)124121-526
Malik Monk (CHA)115-109 W @ NOP94-8 (1-4)60010+1017
Devin Booker (PHX)97-118 L vs. UTA83-4 (0-1)01000+97
Trey Lyles (DEN)113-85 W vs. SAS73-5 (1-2)21000+15
Jodie Meeks (TOR)115-105 W @ BKN52-4 (1-1)02000-611
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA)115-109 W @ NOP52-7 (1-2)51000-820
Jarred Vanderbilt (DEN)113-85 W vs. SAS00-1 (0-0)11000-14
Skal Labissiere (POR)116-89 W vs. MEM00-1 (0-0)1001004
John Wall (WAS)114-115 L vs. CHIDNP-Foot----------------
Anthony Davis (NOP)109-115 L vs. CHADNP-Back----------------
Darius Miller (NOP)109-115 L vs. CHADNP-Adductor Strain----------------
Alex Poythress (ATL)130-122 W vs. PHIDNP-Ankle----------------
Isaiah Briscoe (ORL)114-100 W vs. NYKDNP-Waived----------------

TONIGHT IN THE NBA

8:00 (TNT): Bucks (Bledsoe) @ Sixers

10:00: Cavaliers (Knight) @ Kings (Cauley-Stein, Fox)

10:30 (TNT): Warriors (Cousins) @ Lakers (Rondo)

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Recruiting reporter for KSR. Follow me on Twitter: @ZGeogheganKSR