BACK-TO-BACK ROAD WINS FOR SPURS; BOSTON LOSE TO CHARLOTTE & CLIPPERS FINDING THEIR FORM AGAIN
San Antonio (41-12) made it back-to-back road wins with a 103-89 victory against the Chicago Bulls (30-21) to move two games clear of Oklahoma. Kawhi Leonard had a career-high 26 points as the Spurs were without Tony Parker, Manu Ginobilli and Tim Duncan but still managed to get the win. Nate Robinson led the Bulls with 20 points and 7 assists with the home side out-rebounding their opponents 49-26 with 15 coming from Joakim Noah. Chicago enjoyed an early seven point lead but the Spurs came to life in the second quarter to establish a double-digit lead before powering to victory.
STAT: Chicago made just 2/12 from 3-point range while the visitors shot 50% as they made 8/16.
Boston‘s seven game win streak came to an end as they suffered a 94-91 defeat at home to the Charlotte Bobcats (12-39). Ramon Sessions nailed a late jumper to seal the victory with Byron Mullens producing a huge double-double of 25 points and 18 rebounds. Jeff Green led the Celtics (27-24) with 18 points off the bench while KG added a 16-13 double-double. The win is just Charlotte‘s 12th of the season having come close to beating the Lakers last week. Atlanta (28-22) remain ahead of Boston in the Eastern standings after a 105-101 victory on the road in Dallas. Josh Smith led the way for the Hawks with 26 points and 13 rebounds while Dirk Nowitzki had 24 for the Mavericks (22-29).
LA Clippers (37-17) shot an impressive 58% from the field as ‘Lob City’ turned in an impressive performance in Philadelphia. Chris Paul top scored with 20 points whilst dishing out 11 assists with Blake Griffin and Jamal Crawford two beneficiaries as they both recorded 20 point games. Nick Young led the 76ers (22-28) with his second-best points tally of the season with 29. Minnesota (19-30) ended their losing streak of eight games with a 100-92 win on the road against Cleveland (16-36). Ricky Rubio reached double-figures in points for the third consecutive game for the first time this season whilst providing ten dimes.
STAT: This was CP3‘s first double-double since Jan.19th v Washington due to being out in recent weeks because of injury.
Indiana (31-21) suffered another overtime heart-break on their home court with Brooklyn (30-22) taking the win on this occasion; 89-94. Brook Lopez had 25 points for the Nets in the absence of Deron Williams while Reggie Evans pulled down an incredible 22 rebounds. Ryan Anderson led the Hornets (18-34) to a 105-86 win in Detroit (20-33) with his third 30+ point game of the season. New Orleans outscored the Pistons in every quarter on their way to a dominant win. The final game saw Washington (15-35) record their fourth straight win, beating Milwaukee (25-25) 102-90 with rookie Bradley Beal producing his NBA best points tally of 28 off the bench.
Watch Blake Griffin’s incredible left-handed slam amongst others as the Clippers turn it up in Philadelphia (NBA):