by Adam Figman | @afigman
Two halves, two stories. The one to come out of the first was Ray Allen’s, when the sharpshooter hit his 2,560th and 2,561st three-pointers, becoming the all-time leader in three-point fielders. Props go out to Ray, who we all know hass worked insanely hard to get to where he’s at, and deserves that record like no other. During the second half, we turned our eyes on the actual game, when these two battled back and forth, as always. This time, though, L.A. was able to keep the C’s at a slight distance during the final minutes, and Kobe Bryant made a couple of huge buckets down the stretch to secure the win. Despite the on-again, off-again struggles the Lakers have been going through as of late, they made a hell of a statement last night, essentially stating, “Yo, we still here!” to the rest of the League by coming up with this victory. Kobe led the Lakers with 23 points, while Ray Allen did the same for the Celts with 20. Boston has a few games off before another big one, when the Heat come to town on Sunday, and the Lake Shows hits MSG tonight to face the Knicks. And in case you forgot: Yo, they still here.
While the above dogfight was taking place, a slightly less intense tilt went down in Phoenix, where the Suns ran all over the Warriors. Steve Nash scored 18, distributed 11 and was able to sit out for the entire final quarter, with the W was entirely at hand early on. The win brought the Suns to 25-25, good for 10th in the West. For the Warriors, Monta Ellis had an off night (8 points, 4-9 shooting), and the team shot just 40.0 percent from the field.
I understand the fear that they’ll get left with nothing, but maybe the Nuggets should chill with the trade talk until they’re sure they can’t make a run at the Finals this season? When they’re playing well, and with Carmelo Anthony killing it the way he has been, it certainly seems like they can defeat anyone in the West—sans, perhaps, those Laker dudes. Anyway, it looked like the Mavs were gonna hold onto this one, holding the lead for the majority of the fourth, but behind Melo (42 points), Chauncey Billups (30) and Arron Afflalo (24), the Nugs stormed back, and tied things up in the final minute. With under 20 seconds to go, Dirk Nowitzki (who scored 16 total), drew Melo’s sixth foul and got to the line, hitting one of two to put Dallas up a single point with little time remaining. But Denver didn’t buckle, and after a Billups-Nene pick-and-roll failed, Chauncey founded Afflalo open on the wing, and…
Actual Stats: Carmelo Anthony: 42 points, 7 boards, 5 threes, 3 assists, 1 steal
Wait! One more Last Call, just cuz: