By John Askounis/ email@example.com
Banged-up Boston Celtics got the job done at the Amway Center on Friday evening with the 109-98 win versus the Orlando Magic. Starter Daniel Theis chipped in with 16 points, six rebounds, four dimes and one block. Naturalized Montenegrin Javonte Green scored seven points to go along with his six boards, three interceptions and one assist off the bench and Vincent Poirier notched a couple of rebounds and one dime. Enes Kanter (right hip) was among players missing the 2019-20 NBA Regular Season contest and is expected to sit out at least a couple more games. Evan Fournier led the Magic with 30 points, also put up five boards, one assist and one steal. Starting as well, Nikola Vucevic posted a 17-point, 12-rebound double-double alongside four dimes and one interception.
Nemanja Bjelica and Bogdan Bogdanovic both started for the Sacramento Kings that beat the Chicago Bulls, 98-81, at the United Center. The Serbian duo combined for 25 points, 13 and 12 respectively. The former added seven boards, three assists, one steal and one rejection, and the latter three rebounds and one dime. As for the losing side, Tomas Satoransky finished with eight points, four rebounds, a couple of assists and one steal. Adam Mokoka missed a couple of shots in limited action and Lauri Markkanen (left hip) was added to the injury list projected to be sidelined for about one month.
Strong showing from the Joker
Game-high 27 points by Nikola Jokic, sported 12 rebounds, seven dimes, four steals and one block as well for the Denver Nuggets that defeated the New Orleans Pelicans, 113-106, at the Smoothie King Center. Only made one out of his six three-point attempts en route for 9/20 field goals, but sank all of his eight free throws. In European reserve action, Juan Hernangomez posted one board, one assist and one steal, and Vlatko Cancar one rebound, but no points for either player. Nicolo Melli did not earn playing time for the home side.
Team-high 25 points from Danilo Gallinari with the Oklahoma City Thunder grabbing the 140-111 victory opposite to the Atlanta Hawks at the Chesapeake Energy Arena. The in-form Italian forward sank four threes, 7/10 field goals, notched six boards, three assists and one steal as well. Teammate Dennis Schroder had 21 points behind 8/16 from the field, eight dimes and three rebounds in 31 minutes off the bench. Another reserve, Alex Len (right hip) exited without scoring in 13 minutes, grabbed four rebounds, rejected three shots and made one steal in losing effort.
Dario Saric poured 20 points, also tallied four boards, one assist and one steal for the Phoenix Suns in the 103-99 win against the San Antonio Spurs at the AT&T Center. Fellow starter Ricky Rubio combined 11 points with a pair of rebounds and a couple of dimes. Reserve Elie Okobo gathered four boards and dished one assist. Jakob Poeltl got in two points, a couple of rejections and one rebound for the hosts, but Marco Belinelli failed to register a stat and Luka Samanic remained on his G League assignment.
Serge Ibaka notched 14 points and a pair of blocks from the bench pushing the Toronto Raptors to the 118-112 win against the New York Knicks at the Madison Square Garden. OG Anunoby went for seven points, a couple of rebounds, one steal and one rejection, and fellow starter Marc Gasol for six points, nine boards and four assists. Two points, three dimes and three rebounds for Frank Ntilikina on the wrong part of the outcome, but assigned Ignas Brazdeikis was inactive.
Jonas Valanciunas threw in eight points, ten rebounds, one dime and one steal for the Memphis Grizzlies in the 125-112 win over the Detroit Pistons at the Little Caesars Arena. Marko Guduric stayed on the bench though. Starters Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk and Sekou Doumbouya put up 19 points, the former 14 points alongside one board and one steal, and the latter five points, three rebounds, one assist and one interception.
A couple of assists short from a triple-double, but Domantas Sabonis with 16 points, ten rebounds, eight dimes and three steals earned the “W” with the Indiana Pacers defeating the Golden State Warriors, 129-118, at the Chase Center. Goga Bitadze (illness) was ruled out for the night. Naz Mitrou-Long remained on his G League assignment. The same for Alen Smailagic, lone Old Continent representative of the Warriors.
Clint Capela racked up 18 points, nine rebounds and five blocks helping the Houston Rockets beat the Minnesota Timberwolves, 131-124, at the Target Center. Fellow Europeans Thabo Sefolosha and Isaiah Hartenstein did not play, while William Howard was inactive. No Euros at all for the Timberwolves.
Four points, eight boards, a couple of assists and one block was the night for Ivica Zubac with the Los Angeles Clippers moving past the Miami Heat, 122-117, at the American Airlines Center. Goran Dragic (left calf) of the losing side was sidelined.
The NBA Paris game saw Giannis Antetokounmpo lead the Milwaukee Bucks to the 116-103 victory over the Charlotte Hornets with 30 points, 16 boards, six assists and one block to his name. Ersan Ilyasova punched in three points, three rebounds and one interception, and Dragan Bender two rebounds, one dime and one block, but Thanasis Antetokounmpo generated no stats. On the other side, Nicolas Batum started in his country, counted five points, six rebounds and five dimes. Also in action was Willy Hernangomez with three points, one dime and one board off the bench.
1. Milwaukee Bucks 40-6
2. Miami Heat 31-14
3. Toronto Raptors 31-14
4. Boston Celtics 30-14
5. Indiana Pacers 30-16
6. Philadelphia 76ers 29-17
7. Orlando Magic 21-25
8. Brooklyn Nets 18-25
9. Detroit Pistons 17-29
10. Chicago Bulls 17-30
11. Washington Wizards 15-29
12. Charlotte Hornets 15-31
13. Cleveland Cavaliers 12-33
14. New York Knicks 12-34
15. Atlanta Hawks 11-35
1. Los Angeles Lakers 36-9
2. Utah Jazz 31-13
3. Los Angeles Clippers 32-14
4. Denver Nuggets 31-14
5. Dallas Mavericks 28-16
6. Houston Rockets 28-16
7. Oklahoma City Thunder 27-19
8. Memphis Grizzlies 21-24
9. San Antonio Spurs 20-24
10. Phoenix Suns 19-26
11. Portland Trail Blazers 19-27
12. New Orleans Pelicans 17-29
13. Sacramento Kings 16-29
14. Minnesota Timberwolves 15-30
15. Golden State Warriors 10-37
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