Post Up: Chris Paul Makes His Return to Los Angeles

Chris Paul made his return to Los Angeles, Giannis Antetokounmpo bolstered his Most Valuable Player Campaign and the Warriors reigned supreme over the Cavs.

by January 16, 2018

Knicks 119 (20-24), Nets 104 (16-28)

Kristaps Porzingis ended his shooting slump as he led the Knicks with 26 points on 14 field goal attempts while grabbing nine boards. Michael Beasley lit up the fourth quarter, scoring 16 of his 23 points, as the Knicks outscored the Nets 36-23 in the final period of play. Rookie Frank Ntilikina recorded his first career double-double with 10 points, 10 assists, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks and a team-high +17 in 29 minutes.

DeMarre Carroll led Brooklyn with 22 points.

Hawks 102 (12-31), Spurs 99 (29-16)

The Hawks pulled off an upset over the Spurs largely in part due to the clutch play of point guard Dennis Schroder, who scored 26 points. LaMarcus Aldridge made a strong final impression for his All-Star Game campaign as he notched 25 points and 11 rebounds for the Spurs.

Bulls 119 (17-27), Heat 111 (25-18)

Chicago won the 14th game of its last 21 contests against a strong Heat team as Justin Holiday hit a career-high seven 3-pointers. Lauri Markkanen became the fastest player to ever hit 100 career 3s, doing so in just 41 games.

Goran Dragic scored 22 for the Heat.

Hornets 118 (17-25), Pistons 107 (22-20)

Dwight Howard and Andre Drummond met in a battle of two of the league’s top traditional big men, but it was Howard who shined in the match-up with 21 points, 17 rebounds and four blocks compared to Drummond’s three points and 10 rebounds.

The play down low proved to be the difference as the Hornets picked up 21 and 20-point performances as well from Marvin Williams and Kemba Walker to secure the dub.

Tobias Harris and Reggie Bullock each led the Pistons with 20 points.

76ers 117 (20-20), Raptors 111 (29-13)

The 76ers picked up a win to stay in the playoff hunt, but the biggest story of the game was a double ejection that resulted in Kyle Lowry and Ben Simmons each being thrown out of the game. It appeared that the two were motioning to meet outside as they were led out.

After the game Simmons said, “I am not going to take shit from anybody.”

Joel Embiid scored a game-high 34 points.

Bucks 104 (23-20), Wizards 95 (25-19)

Giannis Antetokounmpo added another line to his potential MVP resume as he dropped the first 20/20 performance of his career with 27 points and 20 rebounds as the Bucks outlasted a sputtering Wizards squad.

John Wall scored 27 points for Washington.

Thunder 95 (24-20), Kings 88 (13-30)

Sacramento’s balanced attack gave the Kings a halftime lead, but it wasn’t enough to hold off the Thunder’s star power as Carmelo Anthony, Paul George, Steven Adams and Russell Westbrook combined for 70 points.

Grizzlies 123 (14-28), Lakers 114 (15-28)

The Lakers dropped to 0-7 on the year when Lonzo Ball doesn’t play. A rejuvenated Tyreke Evans narrowly missed a triple-double with 15 points, 12 assists and nine rebounds as one of the league’s worst offenses connected on 51 percent of its shot from the field and 45 percent from behind the arc.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope led the Lakers’ offensive attack with 27 points.

Warriors 118 (36-9), Cavaliers 108 (26-17)

Points were being scored with ease for most of this match-up, but the Cavaliers’ offense began to wilt away in the fourth quarter as the Warriors stayed energized behind Kevin Durant’s 32 points. LeBron James also had 32 points for Cleveland, but it wasn’t enough as the new-look Cavaliers featuring Isaiah Thomas couldn’t end the team’s struggles against the Warriors.

Pacers 109 (24-20), Jazz 94 (17-26)

Victor Oladipo’s offensive game couldn’t be extinguished as his 26 points led all players. Rookie guard Donovan Mitchell continued his Rookie of the Year campaign with a team-high 23 points for the Jazz; however, most of Utah’s other starters struggled to get into any kind of offensive rhythm.

Clippers 113, Rockets 102 

Lou Williams is still the best scorer in 2018 and his 31 points in addition to Blake Griffin’s 29 spoiled Chris Paul’s return back to Los Angeles. Paul abused Milos Tedosic, his replacement on the Clippers, en route to 19 points and seven assists.

The game got chippy in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter as Griffin was ejected after verbal altercations with Mike D’Antoni and Trevor Ariza and Ariza got into it with members of the Clippers’ bench.