Despite losing Kevin Durant to an ankle injury, the Warriors ended the Rockets’ nine-game winning streak last night. With a victory over the line (106-104) thanks to an excellent DeMarcus Cousins, author of his best game of the season. Oklahoma City won ahead of Brooklyn (108-96) with Russell Westbrook’s 26th doubles triple this season.
Golden State take over Houston
A clash between the Warriors and the Rockets is one of the most beautiful games of the championship. The revenge of the last Conference finals. But they are also two teams on completely different dynamics: Golden State had just lost six out of ten matches, while Houston had won nine in a row. A series stopped abruptly after this defeat against the reigning double champions tonight (104-106).
Without Kevin Durant, who was hit in the ankle, and with Stephen Curry caught in a bad pass in terms of skill, Steve Kerr’s players found other resources. Other guides. Klay Thompson scored 30 points with 5 winning baskets. He was perfectly supported by a DeMarcus Cousins who delivered his best performance since his return to competition last January, after almost a year of absence. The pivot scored 27 points, 8 rebounds and 7 assists.
The Californians took up to 14 points in the fourth quarter. A gap that has melted in the last moments. James Harden (29 pts, 10 pts but 2 out of 12 at three points) and Chris Paul (24 pts) brought the Rockets back to a small point a few seconds behind the siren. Curry, who still scored 24 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists, ensured his team’s victory on the free throw line. 106-104 at the finish for a Golden State team that showed they could beat one of the best teams in the NBA without Kevin Durant.
Westbrook again in triple-double
Paul George has lowered his foot a little since his injury a few days ago. The Thunder took the hit, too. And Oklahoma City lost its third place in the West. But the team got back on track by beating Brooklyn tonight (108-96). With an excellent Russell Westbrook at the helm. The All-Star leader finished with his twenty-sixth triple-double of the season: 31 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists.
Down by 10 points at the break, the Thunder made the difference in the second half. Just as Westbrook, an altruistic man, distributed 10 of his 11 passes in two quarters. He found George (25 pts) but also Jerami Grant (15 pts) or Steven Adams (13). Thanks to this success, OKC now has the same record as Houston. The two teams are tied for third place in the Conference.
A 21-0 for Miami
The Pistons were in great shape but they just took two tails almost one after the other. The Michigan team was largely defeated by Miami (74-108).
The deficit was only 5 points at half-time but the Heat was boiling in the second half. Justise Winslow (16 pts) and his teammates spent a 21-0 to attack the third quarter. The complete stampede to Detroit. Dwane Casey’s players were knocked out and they couldn’t get up. The Pistons have now dropped back to seventh place in the East, just ahead of their evening rivals.
Collins and Young compile 49 points
The Hawks are stronger than expected this season. They are only twelfth in the East, of course, but now with 24 wins following their success against the Grizzlies tonight (132-111).
Atlanta is closer to the playoffs than the last place in the ranking. However, this was not the initial plan this season. The franchise had to camp in the depths of the Eastern Conference to find a very high ranking draft choice. One more, to complete the core of tomorrow’s franchise and thus begin a new phase of its reconstruction process.
But the Hawks already have some very good young people. Two in particular.
John Collins and Trae Young, a duo that already supports the team. An additional complementary tandem. A kind of remix of Steve Nash and Amar’e Stoudemire, all proportions kept of course. Last night, the two young stars scored 49 points. 22 for the rookie leader (with 8 passes) and 27 for his inside finisher (with 12 rebounds in only 25 minutes). This association has a very bright future ahead of it.
Full results from last night :
Wizards – Magic: 100-90
Thunder – Nets: 108-96
Heat – Pistons: 108-74
Hawks – Grizzlies: 132-111
Rockets – Warriors: 104-106
Suns – Jazz: 97-114.