Good morning, folks. Jamal Murray and Malik Monk can’t miss a shot right now. Also, is Devin Booker about to make the All-Star roster? Let’s talk NBA.
“I create my own path. It was straight and narrow. I looked at it this way: you were either in my way, or out of it.” — Kobe Bryant
Lakers try to cool down a red-hot Jamal Murray
Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray came into Wednesday night’s matchup against the Los Angeles Lakers playing his best basketball of the season. A mild ankle injury that forced him to sit out for 10 consecutive games gave him an opportunity to reflect on what he was doing right and what he was doing wrong. In the five games since his return, he’s been on a scoring rampage.
The former ‘Cat dropped in 32 points on 13-25 shooting to go along with 10 assists for just his second double-double of the year. Over the last five outings, Murray is averaging 29.0 points and 6.2 assists on shooting splits of 57.1/46.2/75.0. The Nuggets had ripped off four wins in a row thanks to the efforts of Murray before facing the Lakers.
Behind a BBNBA-high of 33 points from Anthony Davis, the Lakers pulled out an overtime victory, 120-116, over the Nugs. Davis added 10 rebounds, two assists, two steals, and two blocks to his impressive stat line as the Lakers improve on its NBA-best road record of 23-5. Rajon Rondo added two points, one dime, and one board in 14 minutes for L.A.
Monk shines again in win over KAT-less Wolves
The only former Kentucky player in the NBA on a hotter scoring streak than Jamal Murray is easily Malik Monk of the Charlotte Hornets. Stay on the lookout later today for a more in-depth overview of what Monk has been doing the last few weeks, but we’ll cover the important facts for right now.
Monk posted 25 points on a 10-20 shooting clip to go along with four rebounds and three assists. His last 10 games have wihtout a doubt been the best stretch of his three-year NBA career. He’s scoring at will, attacking the rim with a purpose, and looking as confident as he’s been since his time in Lexington. Oh yeah, he also helped his Hornets squad steal a road win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday, 115-108.
P.J. Washington dropped in two points, nine rebounds, and three assists on a 1-8 shooting mark. While Monk has been impressing, Washington is in the midst of his rookie slump.
The Wolves were without Karl-Anthony Towns, who sat out due to a wrist injury and is expected to be re-evaluated after the All-Star break. Wolves head coach Ryan Saunders said before the game he did not know how or when Towns injured his wrist, which is awesome news to hear from a head coach. Minny led by as many as 18 points in the first half before the Hornets rallied back in the second half thanks to a 12-2 run to open the fourth quarter that gave them its first lead since the game opened at 2-0. Charlotte had lost 14 out of its last 15 games coming into Wednesday night.
Jarred Vanderbilt appeared in four minutes for Minnesota, recording two points and one rebound.
Booker in the All-Star game?
Devin Booker went for 27 points, five rebounds, and eight assists in the Phoenix Suns 112-106 win over the Golden State Warriors. However, he turned the ball over five times and shot just 8-22 from the floor. But the real story happened outside of this game. Late in the Portland Trail Blazers 111-104 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, point guard Damian Lillard suffered a groin injury that he already said will hold him out of the All-Star weekend festivities.
Booker was notoriously snubbed from making the All-Star roster for the first time in his career and Lillard actually mentioned Booker as the guy who should get a strong look as his replacement.
Damian Lillard injured his groin in the final minutes of the Blazers loss to the Grizzlies on Wednesday. Deciding to put his health first, Lillard confirmed in the postgame locker room that he will not participate in the All-Star Game or 3pt contest. #RipCity pic.twitter.com/PNOTtXoMbG
— NBC Sports Northwest (@NBCSNorthwest) February 13, 2020
At this point, I would be SHOCKED if Booker doesn’t get the nod to replace Lillard. We should be hearing an announcement on that front sometime soon.
- Well, it was fun while it lasted, but the New York Knicks are back to being the New York Knicks. Following their first four-game win streak of the season, they’ve now dropped two in a row, the most recent coming against the Washington Wizards in a 114-96 loss on Wednesday. Julius Randle registered 21 points and 13 rebounds on 9-18 shooting while Kevin Knox played just 10 minutes, scoring two points for New York.
- De’Aaron Fox and the Sacramento Kings fell to the Dallas Mavericks, 130-111. Fox posted 16 points, three rebounds, and four assists. Dallas was without Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who they recently picked up after he was waived by the Charlotte Hornets. He’ll join the team after the All-Star break. Willie Cauley-Stein saw the court for a mere three minutes for the Mavs, posting four points and one rebound.
- We’ll end today’s recap with the Milwaukee Bucks, who lost its first game of the season without Giannis Antetokounmpo (they were 5-0 prior to Wednesday) to the Indiana Pacers, 118-111. Eric Bledsoe added 15 points, six rebounds, and four assists for the Bucks. Milwaukee trailed by 25 in the first half and nearly rallied all the way back to steal the win, but former Buck Malom Brogdon iced the game away down the stretch for Indy.
Check out the full stat sheet below.
|Anthony Davis (LAL)||120-116 (OT) W @ DEN||33||12-23 (3-6)||10||2||2||2||2||+5||41|
|Jamal Murray (DEN)||116-120 (OT) L vs. LAL||32||13-25 (3-8)||3||10||0||0||2||-4||44|
|Devin Booker (PHX)||112-106 W vs. GSW||27||8-22 (2-8)||5||8||2||1||5||_17||37|
|Malik Monk (CHA)||115-108 W @ MIN||25||10-20 (3-7)||4||3||1||2||3||+10||31|
|Julius Randle (NYK)||96-114 L vs. WAS||21||9-18 (1-3)||13||1||0||1||4||-15||37|
|De'Aaron Fox (SAC)||111-130 L @ DAL||16||5-16 (0-3)||3||4||1||1||1||-26||30|
|Eric Bledsoe (MIL)||111-118 L @ IND||15||4-11 (0-3)||6||4||1||0||5||-24||26|
|Bam Adebayo (MIA)||101-116 L @ UTA||9||4-10 (0-0)||11||5||4||2||1||-23||33|
|Willie Cauley-Stein (DAL)||130-111 W vs. SAC||4||2-3 (0-1)||1||0||0||0||0||-1||3|
|Kevin Knox (NYK)||96-114 L vs. WAS||2||1-1 (0-0)||0||0||0||0||0||-3||10|
|P.J. Washington Jr. (CHA)||115-108 W @ MIN||2||1-8 (0-3)||9||3||1||0||3||+6||30|
|Jarred Vanderbilt (MIN)||108-115 L vs. CHA||2||0-1 (0-1)||1||0||0||0||0||-11||4|
|Rajon Rondo (LAL)||120-116 (OT) W @ DEN||2||1-2 (0-1)||1||1||0||0||0||-5||14|
|Wenyen Gabriel (POR)||104-111 L @ MEM||0||0-0||1||0||0||0||0||-2||1|
|Brandon Knight (DET)||112-116 (OT) L @ ORL||DNP-CD||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Michael KIdd-Gilchrist (DAL)||130-111 W vs. SAC||DNP-Not Yet With Team||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)||108-115 L vs. CHA||DNP-Wrist||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Tyler Herro (MIA)||101-116 L @ UTA||DNP-Ankle||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Skal Labissiere (ATL)||105-127 L @ CLE||DNP-Knee||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|John Wall (WAS)||114-96 W @ NYK||DNP-Foot||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
TONIGHT IN THE NBA
8:00 (TNT): Clippers (Patterson) @ Celtics (Kanter)
8:00: Thunder (Diallo, Gilgeous-Alexander, Noel) @ Pelicans (Miller-out)