By Johnny Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The Atlanta Hawks in their first five-game winning streak in nearly four years.
Interim head coach Nate McMillan led them to the 100-82 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday night. Italian Danilo Gallinari connected a clutch three and poured 20 points in a rare start with Swiss Clint Capela out due to left heel pain. Serbian Bogdan Bogdanovic added 12 points, four rebounds, and two assists off the bench. Turkish Cedi Osman finished with ten points for the Cavs in a reserve role as well.
The streaking Miami Heat beat Florida rival, Orlando Magic, 102-97. Slovenian Goran Dragic was held to 1/11 field goals and three points but dished out eight assists to go along with four rebounds and two steals. Montenegrin Nikola Vucevic with 38 points, ten rebounds, six assists, and two steals could not prevent his side’s eighth consecutive loss. French Evan Fournier remained among the sidelined players battling injuries.
Turkish Furkan Korkmaz went for 16 points behind 5/7 field goals, including 4/4 triples, helping the Philadelphia 76ers throw down the San Antonio Spurs, 134-99, without injured Joel Embiid. Austrian starting center Jakob Poeltl registered seven points, five rebounds, two assists, and two blocks in the losing effort, while Croatian Luka Samanic got seven points, one rebound, one assist, and one block coming off the bench.
The Minnesota Timberwolves edged the Portland Trail Blazers, 114-112, with Ricky Rubio making 8/8 free throws in the final seconds. The Spanish point guard put up 15 points, seven assists, and five rebounds in 30 minutes. Compatriot Juan Hernangomez produced five points, four rebounds, and one assist in 23 minutes. On the opposite end, Enes Kanter finished with four points and 11 rebounds.
A pair of European starters for the Chicago Bulls in the win, 118-95, over the Toronto Raptors. Finnish Lauri Markkanen’s contribution amounted to 13 points, seven rebounds, one assist, one steal, and rejection in 32 minutes. Czech Tomas Satoransky threw in ten points, seven assists, six rebounds, two blocks, and one steal in 26 minutes. Rookie Patrick Williams posted a career-best 23 points.
The New Orleans Pelicans behind a strong display by Zion Williamson overpowered the Los Angeles Clippers, 135-115. Italian Nicolo Melli had two points plus three rebounds and two assists, but Spanish Willy Hernangomez was held to just one rebound. French Nicolas Batum scored six points and Croatian Ivica Zubac three, but Serge Ibaka missed both his shots before exiting with lower back tightness.
Earlier games saw the Oklahoma City Thunder take down the Memphis Grizzlies and the Golden State Warriors defeat the league-leaders Utah Jazz.
Oklahoma City Thunder – Memphis Grizzlies 128-122
Golden State Warriors – Utah Jazz 131-119
Philadelphia 76ers – San Antonio Spurs 134-99
Orlando Magic – Miami Heat 97-102
Atlanta Hawks – Cleveland Cavaliers 100-82
Houston Rockets – Boston Celtics 107-134
Minnesota Timberwolves – Portland Trail Blazers 114-112
Chicago Bulls – Toronto Raptors 118-95
New Orleans Pelicans – Los Angeles Clippers 135-115
1. Philadelphia 76ers 27-12
2. Brooklyn Nets 26-13
3. Milwaukee Bucks 24-14
4. Miami Heat 21-18
5. Boston Celtics 20-18
6. Charlotte Hornets 19-18
7. New York Knicks 20-19
8. Atlanta Hawks 19-20
9. Indiana Pacers 17-20
10. Chicago Bulls 17-20
11. Toronto Raptors 17-22
12. Washington Wizards 14-23
13. Cleveland Cavaliers 14-24
14. Orlando Magic 13-26
15. Detroit Pistons 10-28
1. Utah Jazz 28-10
2. Phoenix Suns 25-12
3. Los Angeles Lakers 25-13
4. Los Angeles Clippers 25-15
5. Denver Nuggets 22-16
6. Portland Trail Blazers 22-16
7. San Antonio Spurs 19-16
8. Dallas Mavericks 20-17
9. Golden State Warriors 20-19
10. Memphis Grizzlies 17-18
11. New Orleans Pelicans 17-22
12. Oklahoma City Thunder 17-22
13. Sacramento Kings 15-23
14. Houston Rockets 11-26
15. Minnesota Timberwolves 9-30
Photo Credit: Getty Images