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BBNBA: SGA Goes Off For A Career-High 32 Points

(Zach Beeker | OKC Thunder)

(Zach Beeker | OKC Thunder)

Good afternoon, folks. SGA is good and maybe the Thunder are now too? Let’s talk NBA.

RECAP

SGA’s career-high and Booker’s return

Devin Booker’s return to the Phoenix Suns’ rotation was spoiled by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s career night. SGA’s Oklahoma City Thunder squad made light-work of the Suns, 126-108, as the former Kentucky guard posted a career-high of 32 points on 13-18 shooting (2-2 from deep) to go along with four rebounds, three assists, one steal, and zero turnovers.

OKC had a habit in the last few games of pitfalling into early-game deficits by 20-points or more but somehow rallying to come back and steal a win. Against Phoenix, the Thunder controlled the game from the opening tip and cruised to its third consecutive win (and eighth of its last 11) with an even 14-14 record. Nerlens Noel contributed 10 points, five rebounds, and two steals in the win for OKC.

After sitting out the last three games with a forearm injury, Booker made his reappearance in the Suns’ lineup by playing 28 minutes to go along with 18 points, four rebounds, and three assists. Phoenix lost all three games Booker was out and with another L on Friday, they extend that skid to four games in a row.

Murray leads Denver to 5th straight win

The Denver Nuggets seem to be putting the pieces together on offense a little bit more every game. In a 109-100 win over the Karl-Anthony Towns-less Minnesota Timberwolves (KAT has missed two straight games now with a knee sprain), Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic powered the Nugs to its fifth straight win and back-to-back excellent showings from the former Wildcat.

Murray went off for 28 points – just one game after dropping 33 – on 9-19 shooting and a 3-6 clip from beyond the arc. He stuffed the stat sheet, too, with six rebounds, five assists, and three steals as the Nuggets never once trailed in this game.

Denver recently went four of six games without topping the 100-point threshold, losing all four of those outings. Since then, the Nuggets offense has produced a five-game average of 111.4 points per game with a perfect 5-0 record. Granted, none of those opponents currently possess winning records, but we’ll find out if Denver has turned a corner when they face the Lakers on Sunday.

Heat embarrass Knicks

Ready for a surprise? The New York Knicks are, in fact, not a playoff team. All it took was a good, ole’ fashioned ass-kicking from the Miami Heat to bring them back down to earth. Miami led by 20 or more points throughout the majority of the evening as Goran Dragic made his return from injury, rejoining the already-stacked Heat lineup. Miami led by as many as 34 and beat New York by a score of 129-114.

Bam Adebayo continues to play like a man possessed by a basketball demon, going off for another stocked stat line of 20 points, eight rebounds, three assists, and one steal on 6-9 shooting from the field. Miami improved to 21-8 with the win and the outcome could have looked far worse as the Heat starters were staying warm on the bench for the entire fourth quarter. Tyler Herro added 12 points on 5-10 shooting.

For the Knicks, Kevin Knox shot 4-10 from the field for 11 points, three rebounds, and two assists in 21 minutes while Julius Randle recorded 13 points and eight rebounds although it came on an ugly 3-11 shooting mark.

Other notes

  • De’Aaron Fox came off the bench for the second straight game as the Sacramento Kings continue to slowly work the star point guard back into game form. Fox played 24 minutes in the Kings 119-105 loss to the Pacers, and only managed eight points but with five rebounds, six assists, and three steals.
  • Enes Kanter hauled in a season-high of 18 rebounds in just 22 minutes in the Boston Celtics 114-93 win over the Detroit Pistons, adding eight points in the process.
  • Ja Morant dunked all over Kevin Love.

Check out the full stat sheet below.

STATISTICS

PlayerResult PointsFG (3FG)Reb.Ast.StealsBlocksTOs+/-Mins.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (OKC)126-108 W vs. PHX3213-18 (2-2)43100+1136
Jamal Murray (DEN)109-100 W vs. MIN289-19 (3-6)65303+1537
Bam Adebayo (MIA)129-114 W vs. NYK206-9 (0-0)83104+2230
Devin Booker (PHX)108-126 L @ OKC186-11 (0-2)43104-928
Julius Randle (NYK)114-129 L @ MIA133-11 (0-4)81102-2623
Tyler Herro (MIA)129-114 W vs. NYK125-10 (2-4)22002-925
Kevin Knox (NYK)114-129 L @ MIA114-10 (2-5)32000+1321
Nerlens Noel (OKC)126-108 W vs. PHX104-6 (0-0)51211+1020
De'Aaron Fox (SAC)105-119 L @ IND83-9 (0-2)56302-124
Enes Kanter (BOS)114-93 W vs. DET84-9 (0-0)180112+1122
Skal Labissiere (POR)118-103 W vs. ORL82-4 (0-0)53021024
Willie Cauley-Stein (GSW)106-102 W vs. NOP83-6 (0-0)72031-428
Brandon Knight (CLE)114-107 W vs. MEMDNP-CD----------------
Wenyen Gabriel (SAC)105-119 L @ INDDNP-G League----------------
Jarred Vanderbilt (DEN)109-100 W vs. MINDNP-G League----------------
Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)100-109 L @ DENDNP-Knee----------------
Hamidou Diallo (OKC)126-108 W vs. PHXDNP-Elbow----------------
John Wall (WAS)118-122 L @ TORDNP-Foot----------------
Darius Miller (NOP)102-106 L @ GSWDNP-Achilles----------------

TODAY IN THE NBA

5:00: Jazz @ Hornets (Kidd-Gilchrist, Monk, Washington-out)

6:00: Hawks @ Nets

7:00: Bulls @ Pistons

7:00: Wizards (Wall-out) @ 76ers

7:30: Bucks (Bledsoe-out) @ Knicks (Knox, Randle)

8:00: Kings (Fox) @ Grizzlies

8:30: Clippers (Patterson) @ Spurs (Lyles)

9:00 (NBATV): Rockets @ Suns (Booker)

10:00: Timberwolves (Towns-questionable) @ Trail Blazers (Labissiere)

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

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