Post Up: Lucky 13

It's been over a month since the Rockets have lost a game, Carmelo returned to the Garden, LeBron did LeBron things, and more!
by December 17, 2017
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Rockets 115 (24-4), Bucks 111 (15-13)

It’s now been over a month since the Rockets have lost a game. Houston won its 13th in a row behind 31 points from James Harden and 25 from Chris Paul. But it wasn’t easy. Though the Rockets led by 12 with just 4:18 to go, Khris Middleton scored 12 points in the final minutes to keep the Bucks close. He finished with 23 points, while Giannis Antetokounmpo led Milwaukee with 28.

Knicks 111 (16-13), Thunder 96 (14-15)

Carmelo Anthony had his return to MSG spoiled by the Kristaps-less Knicks, who pulled away late. Before the game, the Knicks played a video tribute to their former star and he was greeted with a warm ovation during pregame introductions. Anthony went just 5-18 from the floor, however, as Michael Beasley went for 30 on the other end to lead New York. Russell Westbrook had 25 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists to lead the Thunder, who could not win their fourth-straight road game.

Trail Blazers 93 (16-13), Hornets 91 (10-19)

The Hornets missed a bevy of chances down the stretch, allowing the Trail Blazers to survive in Charlotte. Kemba Walker missed three shots in the final 22 seconds with the Hornets trailing by just a single possession. Jeremy Lamb’s heave with four seconds to go also fell short. On the other side, the Portland backcourt of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum was  phenomenal — McCollum had 25 points, while Lillard had 18 points, 11 assists, and seven rebounds. Nicolas Batum led Charlotte with 23 points on 5-9 shooting from three.

Cavaliers 109 (22-8), Jazz 100 (14-16)

Cleveland won its 11th-straight home game behind 29 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists from LeBron James. The triple-double moved LeBron into sole possession of sixth place on the NBA’s all-time list. Donovan Mitchell continued his incredible rookie year with 26 points on 11-16 shooting, but when the King makes plays like this, there’s just no stopping the Cavs:

Heat 90 (15-14), Clippers 85 (11-17)

The Heat scored the final six points to steal one from the Clippers late. A Goran Dragic jumper with 1:19 to go put Miami up for good as L.A. went scoreless the rest of the game. Josh Richardson made six of his eight three-point attempts and scored 28 points to lead all scorers on a night where the Heat shot just 38 percent from the field. Montrezl Harrell had 15 to lead the Clippers.

Suns 108 (10-21), Timberwolves 106 (17-13)

Isaiah Canaan drew a foul on a three-pointer with six seconds to go and hit all three free throws to turn a one-point deficit into a two-point win for the Suns. That three-point attempt was initially waved off as the officials called a shot clock violation, but replay showed that Jeff Teague committed a foul just a couple tenths of a second before the buzzer. Troy Daniels and Dragan Bender each had 17 to lead Phoenix. Karl-Anthony Towns led everyone with 28 points for the Timberwolves.

Spurs 98 (20-10), Mavericks 96 (8-22)

Manu Ginobili‘s layup with four seconds left lifted the Spurs to a thrilling win over Dallas. Ginobili’s heroics came just seconds after a LaMarcus Aldridge jumper tied the game, allowing San Antonio to steal one at home. The Spurs trailed by nine going into the fourth quarter and by 11 when Maximilian Kleber hit a jumper with 4:11 to go. The Mavericks did not score again as San Antonio ended the game on a 12-0 run. Kleber led the Mavericks with 21, while Aldridge had 22 points and 14 rebounds.

Celtics 102 (25-7), Grizzlies 93 (9-21)

When the Celtics took a 31-12 lead at the end of the first quarter, they probably didn’t feel like they’d have to sweat this game out. But the Grizzlies came back, outscoring Boston by 21 over the next two quarters before the Celtics went on a 16-0 run to start the fourth and restore order. Kyrie Irving had 20 to lead six Celtics in double-figures. That was too much for Memphis to handle, despite 30 from Marc Gasol and 25 from Tyreke Evans. With the win, Boston has still not lost two straight since the opening two games of the season.