Good Wednesday afternoon, BBNBA readers. As we inch closer to the playoffs, another exciting day of NBA play is now officially in the books. Let’s see what happened:
PORTLAND ENDS 5-GAME SKID BEHIND KANTER’S DOUBLE-DOUBLE
The Portland Trail Blazers have had an up-and-down season. Though they have some impressive wins with monster showings from All-Star guard Damian Lillard, their defense is…not great. Currently, Portland is allowing an average of 115 points per game. In most defensive categories, they are last or near last in the league.
An impressive Portland offensive effort was able to outweigh their defensive struggles last night in Indianapolis. Anfernee Simons came off the bench to score 27 points, making his first nine 3-pointers. Simons was just two short of beating his teammate Damian Lillard’s franchise record. Lillard himself had a nice showing as well, ending with 23 points and 4-8 from three.
Though Enes Kanter has been playing limited minutes, the former ‘Cat is making the most of them. In his 15 minutes on the court last night, Kanter racked up 12 points, 14 rebounds, three assists and one block. I’m not great at math, but that’s a lot of rebounds in a little time. In fact, it was so good that he had to take to Twitter to shut down some fan speculation afterward.
Y’all crazy. ??
I’m not missing shots on purpose to get more offensive rebounds.
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) April 28, 2021
After last night’s 133-112 win over the Pacers, Portland is now 33-28 on the season and sitting at a solid No. 7 spot in the Western Conference. They are now just one game behind the Mavericks in the sixth spot. They have the time to make the climb, but their remaining stretch of tough games will make it hard.
MULDER, CURRY EFFORT FALLS SHORT AGAINST DALLAS
We didn’t get to see a lot of Mychal Mulder as a Wildcat, but he is beginning to make a name for himself now in his NBA career. Mulder has been a bit inconsistent this season, but he is making the most of his playing time when he can get it. Last night, he got his third straight start for the Warriors against the Mavericks and finished with a career-high 26 points.
His teammate Steph Curry has been unbelievable this season, keeping the flailing Warriors’ playoff hopes alive. Curry has made 90 threes in April so far. In his last 10 games, the possible MVP is averaging 37.6 points per game, shooting 52.9% from the field and 50% from three. He led Golden State with 27 last night, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Dallas and Luka Doncic’s 39-point performance.
Right now, the Warriors are sitting at No. 10 in the West. Though they have a tight hold on the position, last night’s 30-point loss largely reduced any hope the Warriors had of getting out of the Western Conference’s play-in tournament. The Mavs remained in sixth place with the win, 3½ games over the Warriors.
Here are some highlights of Mulder’s performance:
Here's what a career-high night for Mychal Mulder looks like ? pic.twitter.com/TTBapPbwQx
— Sioux Falls Skyforce (@SFSkyforce) April 28, 2021
KAT LEADS WOLVES TO WIN OVER ROCKETS
Have you ever heard that quote “it’s like two mules fighting over a turnip?” Well, that’s basically what this game was. Minnesota and Houston are two of the NBA’s two worst teams and have both already been eliminated from the playoffs, making this a less-than-interesting match to some.
However, it turned out to be a pretty decent game. Karl Anthony-Towns led Minnesota with 31 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Anthony Edwards tacked on 19 points and nine rebounds, along with D’Angelo Russell’s 15 to seal the 114-107 victory for the Timberwolves.
The Rockets were led by Kelly Olynyk’s 28 points. Christian Wood added 24 points and 18 rebounds. It was Houston’s first game since Monday’s news that former ‘Cat and Rocket point John Wall guard is likely to miss the rest of the season with a right hamstring strain. It is only Wall’s first season in Houston, but head coach Stephen Silas recognizes his potential and hopes to see him play more in the 2021-2022 season.
Stephen Silas on the value of John Wall, who will likely miss the rest of the season with a hamstring injury: "When we needed him the most in certain games he’s come out and given us 30, played 40 mins and all of those things show the heart and character that he has."
— Danielle Lerner (@danielle_lerner) April 27, 2021
CELTICS HONOR TERRENCE CLARKE
Former Wildcat Terrence Clarke tragically passed in a car accident nearly a week ago. A Boston native, Clarke grew up an avid Celtics fan. Prior to Boston’s game against the Thunder last night, the team took a moment of silence to pay tribute to Clarke.
The Celtics held a tribute and moment of silence for Boston native Terrence Clarke ? pic.twitter.com/amjv4mzQqX
— ESPN (@espn) April 27, 2021
Rest in peace, Terrence ?? pic.twitter.com/TPMYLFeINv
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) April 27, 2021
Here are the full stats from last night’s games:
|Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)||114-107 W @ HOU||31||12-22 (2-7)||7||5||1||0||5||-4||31|
|Mychal Mulder (GSW)||103-133 L vs. DAL||26||10-16 (6-11)||5||0||0||0||1||-3||31|
|P.J. Washington (CHA)||104-114 L vs. MIL||18||7-11 (2-4)||2||2||0||0||3||+1||32|
|Enes Kanter (POR)||133-112 W @ IND||12||6-14 (0-0)||14||3||0||1||0||+25||15|
|Jarred Vanderbilt (MIN)||114-107 W @ HOU||8||4-4 (0-0)||7||2||3||0||0||+17||22|
|Willie Cauley-Stein (DAL)||133-103 W @ GSW||6||3-4 (0-0)||5||0||0||2||0||+41||23|
|Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (OKC)||119-115 W @ BOS||DNP - Foot injury||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|John Wall (HOU)||107-114 L vs. MIN||DNP - Hamstring strain||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Malik Monk (CHA)||104-114 L vs. MIL||DNP - Sprained ankle||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Nick Richards (CHA)||104-114 L vs. MIL||DNP - Coach's decision||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
TODAY IN THE NBA:
7:00 p.m. – Magic at Cavaliers
7:00 p.m. – Hawks at 76ers (Maxey)
7:30 p.m. – Lakers (Davis) at Wizards
7:30 p.m. – Hornets (Monk, Richards, Washington) at Celtics
7:30 p.m. – Bulls at Knicks (Knox, Quickley, Noel, Randle)
8:00 p.m. – Spurs (Johnson) at Heat (Adebayo, Herro)
9:00 p.m. – Trail Blazers (Kanter) at Grizzlies
9:00 p.m. – Pelicans (Bledsoe) at Nuggets (Murray)
10:00 p.m. – Clippers (Cousins, Rondo) at Suns (Booker)
10:00 p.m. – Jazz at Kings (Fox)