Tommy Beer

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: KD and AD Deliver

Sunday, April 8, 2018


It was another entertaining Saturday in the Association, highlighted by Anthony Davis and Kevin Durant excelling in a showdown between two of fantasy basketball’s top performers, and Nikola Jokic posting yet another triple-double in a crucial Nuggets victory.


After recapping the important storylines from yesterday, we’ll wrap up the Dose by taking a look at the many, many players that are facing injury issues for Sunday’s games.


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Denver Nuggets 134, L.A. Clippers 115:
With the much-needed win, the streaking Nuggets pulled into a tie with the Timberwolves for eighth place in the Western Conference with two games remaining. Unsurprisingly, it was Nikola Jokic who powered the Nuggets to the victory on Saturday afternoon. Jokic recorded his ninth triple-double of the season, finishing with a whopping 23 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists, two steals, one block and one 3-pointer in 34 minutes. Dating back to the start of the 2016-17 campaign, the only players with more triple-doubles than Jokic are Russell Westbrook, James Harden and LeBron JamesWill Barton was incredibly efficient offensively for Denver. He scored 31 points shooting 11-of-15 from the floor and 4-of-4 from the charity stripe. He also chipped in two rebounds, three assists, one block and five 3-pointers… Jamal Murray had 19 points, three rebounds, seven assists and just one turnover.


This loss (their fourth in five games) eliminated the Clippers from postseason contention. Lou Williams struggled in the first half, failing to make a field goal, but got hot in the second half. He finished with 24 points (on 6-of-15 shooting), five assists and two 3-pointers. However, after the game. Coach Doc Rivers said that Lou Will was playing through pain in his injured ankle and that Williams was unlikely to play Monday vs. the Pelicans… Tyrone Wallace scored 18 points with two rebounds, one assist and two steals… DeAndre Jordan tallied 16 points, 17 boards and one assist in 36 minutes. Rivers he would be hesitant to rest Jordan and his other top players in order to “protect the integrity of the game.”


Milwaukee Bucks 115, New York Knicks 102:
The Bucks played with Giannis Antetokounmpo (right ankle soreness), who was ruled out prior to the contest. They were also without Sterling Brown (personal) and Shabazz Muhammad (right ankle sprain). Malcolm Brogdon (knee), who has been out since February 1st, was initially listed as probable. However, he was eventually ruled out just before tip-off. It appears the Bucks want him to get some court time before the start of the postseason, and after the game, Brogdon said that he plans to play Monday vs. Orlando.


Both Eric Bledsoe and Khris Middleton scored 22 points for Milwaukee in the win. Bledsoe shot a sterling 7-of-9 from the floor and 6-of-7 from the free-throw line. He also added a game-high ten assists, three boards, two treys, a steal, a block and a turnover. Middleton was 8-of-22 from the floor and chipped in six rebounds, four assists and one block… John Henson posted a strong double-double (15 points and 12 boards) and blocked three shots… Jabari Parker started in place Antetokounmpo and had one of his best all-around games of the season. Paker logged a game-high 38 minutes and tallied 16 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and two 3-pointers. The five dimes matched a season-high.


The Knicks were short-handed as well on Saturday night. Tim Hardaway Jr. (ankle), Enes Kanter (back and wrist) and Emmanuel Mudiay (concussion) were all ruled out. Kyle O'Quinn once again started at center in place of Kanter and once again posted a monster line, finishing with 15 points, 16 boards, five assists, four blocks and one 3-pointer in 30 minutes. Per Basketball-Reference, KQO is just the second player in Knicks franchise history with at least 15/15/5/4 in a regular season game. He’s the first Knickerbocker since Patrick Ewing with at least 13 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks in three straight games. Over that three-game stretch, O'Quinn is averaging 14.0 points, 14.0 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 4.0 blocks.


Michael Beasley (knee) returned to the Knicks lineup and tallied 13 points, six rebounds, two assists and one 3-pointer in 23 minutes… Courtney Lee had 14 points, four rebounds and two 3-pointers in 27 minutes… Jarrett Jack surprisingly scored 18 points with five rebounds, seven assists and one 3-pointer in 26 minutes… Damyean Dotson, coming off career-highs of 30 points and 11 rebounds on Friday, finished with 11 points, three rebounds, and three steals in 30 minutes in this one.


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Brooklyn Nets 124, Chicago Bulls 96:
Quincy Acy notched a career-high 21 points and also knocked down a career-best six 3-pointers on Saturday, adding three rebounds, one assist and six 3-pointers in 23 minutes. The Nets, as a team, made a franchise-record 24 triples. They were just one trey shy of the NBA record for most made 3-pointers in a game (set by the Cavs last season)... Joe Harris stayed hot on Saturday, tallying 16 points, four rebounds, six assists, one steal, two blocks and four 3-pointers in 29 minutes. Over the Nets last seven games, Harris is averaging 16.9 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 3.0 triples, while shooting 62.7 percent from the floor and 56.8 percent from downtown... Jarrett Allen had nine points with five rebounds, four blocks and one 3-pointer in 21 minutes. Allen will be a popular sleeper pick in fantasy drafts next October.


Lauri Markkanen (rest) was ruled out of this contest for Chicago, which was playing on the second night of a back-to-back. He is expected to be back in uniform on Monday, when these two teams play each other once again. The Bulls and Nets are now tied in the lottery standings with identical 27-53 records. Monday’s game will likely decide who finishes the season with the NBA’s seventh-worst record… The Bulls were also playing without Noah Vonleh (calf) and Robin Lopez (rest) on Saturday. Bobby Portis drew the start and scored 18 points to go along with eight rebounds, one assist, one steal, one block and one 3-pointer in 31 minutes… Sean Kilpatrick, fresh off a season-high 24 points on Friday, tallied 20 points, four rebounds, one assist, one steal and two 3-pointers in 22 minutes on Saturday. David Nwaba had six points, three rebounds, three assists and one steal in 30 minutes.


New Orleans Pelicans 126, Golden State Warriors 120:
The Pelicans needed a win to keep their playoff hopes afloat in the ultra-competitive Western Conference, and their franchise cornerstone put the team on his back and carried them home. Anthony Davis totaled 34 points, 12 rebounds, four assists, two steals and four blocks in 40 minutes. AD has had at least 33 points, 11 boards, three swats and two steals in each of the Pels last two contests. Davis has also been impressively durable this season, playing in 73 of the Pels 80 games despite a heavy workload. He’s logged over 30 minutes in 15 straight games… Often lost in AD’s shadow, Jrue Holiday is having a phenomenal season himself. Jrue had 25 points, five rebounds, six assists and four steals on Saturday… Nikola Mirotic, who snapped out of his slump earlier this week, scored 28 points with six rebounds, four assists, three steals and six 3-pointers in 40 minutes… Rajon Rondo posted a vintage Double-R stat line on Saturday, finishing with 12 points, 17 assists, four boards, two steals and two 3-pointers in 32 minutes.


Kevin Durant did all he possibly could to get the Warriors back on track Saturday night, scoring a game-high 41 points and adding ten rebounds, five assists and four 3-pointers in 36 minutes. KD is the first Warrior with at least 40 points, ten boards and five dimes since Jason Richardson matched those totals in March of 2007… Draymond Green just missed a triple-double (11 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists), but also committed seven turnovers… Quinn Cook had 21 points, three boards, seven assists and five treys in 37 minutes… Andre Iguodala had four points, three rebounds and five assists on Saturday, but is expected to sit out Sunday’s game vs. Phoenix… Shaun Livingston (knee) was rested Saturday but will return to the lineup on Sunday.


Oklahoma City Thunder 108, Houston Rockets 102:
After the Nuggets defeated the Clippers earlier the day, the Thunder knew they were playing a must-win game Saturday evening. If OKC lost to Houston, they would drop to ninth in the conference, on the outside of the playoff picture looking in. Russell Westbrook was relentless on Saturday night, finishing with 24 points, 10 assists, seven rebounds, four steals and a block. He’s currently averaging 25.6 points, 10.1 assists and 9.9 rebounds per game on the season. He needs to pull down a total of 34 boards over OKC’s final two games to average a triple-double for the second straight season. We’ve become somewhat numb to trip-dubs of late, but that’s still mind-boggling… Paul George had 24 points, six rebounds, four assists, two steals and five turnovers. However, he’s still struggling with his shot. PG-13 was 6-of-17 from the floor and has now shot under 50 percent in 21 straight games… Carmelo Anthony, on the other hand, is playing arguably his best ball of the season recently. Melo tallied 22 points (7-of-14 from the field) six rebounds, three treys, one assist and a blocked shot.


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