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BBNBA: Wenyen Gabriel Posts Career-High in Scoring

(Bruce Ely | Trail Blazers)

(Bruce Ely | Trail Blazers)

Good morning, folks. Yeah, Zion is cool and all, but did you see Wenyen Gabriel on Tuesday night??? Let’s talk NBA.

“A lot of leaders fail because they don’t have the bravery to touch that nerve or strike that chord.” — Kobe Bryant

RECAP

Wenyen Gabriel’s career-high

Lost in the shuffle of Zion Williamson recording 31 points, nine rebounds, and five assists on a 10-17 shooting clip (a hell of a stat line for a rookie, I should add), was the impressive outing from Portland Trail Blazers rookie Wenyen Gabriel.

Sure, the Blazers were decimated by Zion and the New Orleans Pelicans, 138-117, but the former ‘Cat put on a brief show throughout the blowout. Gabriel went for 12 points – a career-high – to go along with two rebounds and zero turnovers in just 13 minutes. He hit one of his two attempts from deep and slammed home two vicious dunks off of brilliant cuts. One of his rebounds was on the offensive glass, which he was later fouled on while trying to put back a second chance look (Gabriel went 1-2 from the free-throw line). He had one move, in particular, where he caught the ball at the top of the perimeter and broke out a beautiful spin move driving downhill against a quick defender in Lonzo Ball for an easy layup. It was arguably the best individual move I think I’ve seen Gabriel make in his limited minutes this season. Gabriel also broke out a spot-up jumper near the baseline that he drilled right in the eye of the defender.

It wasn’t like Gabriel was doing all of this in garbage time, either. Most of his minutes came in the first half when the Blazers were winning.

Need. More. Wenyen. Minutes

Spurs earn important win over OKC

The San Antonio Spurs desperately needed a win over a playoff team and they pulled off a big one on Tuesday night, taking down the Oklahoma City Thunder, 114-106. The Spurs came into this game losers of five straight and quickly falling out of the race for the final Western Conference playoff spot. They can’t gain all that ground back with one win, but they needed this one in the worst way.

Trey Lyles appeared in 30 minutes for San Antonio, posting eight points and five rebounds on 3-8 shooting from the field. It wasn’t his best overall game, but Lyles has been much improved over the last few weeks. He’s averaging 9.6 points and 5.3 rebounds over his last nine outings while shooting 44.8 percent on 3.2 three-point attempts (13-27).

For the Thunder, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander went for a BBNBA-high of 17 points in addition to five rebounds and two dimes while shooting 6-11 from the floor. OKC has now dropped two consecutive games after winning nine out of 10. Nerlens Noel played a mere eight minutes, registering just one rebound in the process. Hamidou Diallo contributed four points and two boards, including a dunk early in the fourth quarter that tied the game at 79 all. However, the Spurs responded with a crucial 9-0 run that pushed them ahead for good.

Other notes

  • Enes Kanter appeared in just eight minutes for the Boston Celtics in their 116-105 loss to the Houston Rockets. In that time, the former ‘Cat recorded three rebounds and two turnovers. The Rockets going ultra-small forced the Celtics hand and Kanter’s inability to defend and keep up with smaller players ultimately led to him being sidelined for the majority of this game.

Check out the full stat sheet below.

STATISTICS

PlayerResult PointsFG (3FG)Reb.Ast.StealsBlocksTOs+/-Mins.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (OKC)106-114 L vs. SAS176-11 (2-3)52100-133
Wenyen Gabriel (POR)117-138 L @ NOP125-7 (1-2)20000-213
Trey Lyles (SAS)114-106 W @ OKC83-8 (0-2)51141-230
Hamidou Diallo (OKC)106-114 L vs. SAS42-2 (0-0)21001-18
Nerlens Noel (OKC)106-114 L vs. SAS00-010001-48
Enes Kanter (BOS)105-116 L @ HOU00-2 (0-0)30002-28
Keldon Johnson (SAS)114-106 W @ OKCDNP-CD----------------
Patrick Patterson (LAC)103-110 L @ PHIDNP-CD----------------
Darius Miller (NOP)138-117 W vs. PORDNP-Achilles----------------
John Wall (WAS)126-114 W vs. CHIDNP-Foot----------------

TONIGHT IN THE NBA

7:00: Hawks (Labissiere) @ Cavaliers

7:00: Pistons (Knight) @ Magic

7:30: Raptors @ Nets

7:30 (ESPN): Bucks (Bledsoe) @ Pacers

7:30: Wizards (Wall-out) @ Knicks (Knox, Randle)

8:00: Trail Blazers (Gabriel) @ Grizzlies

  • I normally don’t advise you to watch games, but watch this one if you have NBA League Pass. These two teams are battling for the final playoff spot out West and every game counts. This one is very important.

8:00: Hornets (Monk, Washington) @ Timberwolves (Towns, Vanderbilt) 

8:30: Kings (Fox) @ Mavericks (Cauley-Stein, Kidd-Gilchrist)

9:00: Warriors @ Suns (Booker)

9:00: Heat (Adebayo, Herro-questionable) @ Jazz

10:00 (ESPN): Lakers (Davis, Rondo) @ Nuggets (Murray)

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Covering all things NBA. Follow me on Twitter: @ZackGeoghegan