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NBA Wrap February 10th



A nervous final seconds came to one play.

Either New York could tie the contest or win it on a three.

In the end Miami came away victorious in a close finish.

R.J. Barrett missed a game-tying layup as the Miami Heat won a season-best three straight prevailing over the New York Knicks 98-96.

The contest had numerous momentum swings from both sides with Miami building an early 11 point lead in the first, which was responded to by New York in the second.

Jimmy Butler in his sixth game back for Miami led the way with 26 points, 8 rebounds and 10 assists, while Bam Adebayo had 19 points and 6 rebounds for the Heat who beat the Knicks 109-103 at Madison Square Garden two days ago.

Three quarters of consistent even tempo scoring all of a sudden came to a grinding halt with both teams reverting to the great rivalry of the late 1990s and early 2000s with tight, no-breathing room defence coming to the fore.

Buckets became harder to come by with three ties occurring, the final one at 94 on Payton’s layup. Herro in his short two-year career thus far, has made many clutch shots answered with a three after curling around the paint to put Miami in front.

Immanuel Quickley came through on the next Knicks possession with his trademark floater making it only a one point contest. As the final minute wounded down, desperation from both teams was on display.

A wild sequence occurred when Julius Randle missed a fadeaway baseline jumper as players from opposing teams scrambled for the ball equivalent of a ping pong machine with Butler taken down by Alec Burks, with Randle called for the loose ball foul.

Butler at the line, spilt a pair of free throws to keep New York alive. Drawing up a play for Barrett, the second-year pro got a step ahead of Butler who drove hard to his favoured left side, but Butler not to be denied made an excellent contest as his layup bounced off the rim.

Earlier in the game, Miami raced out to a 20-9 lead, then New York headed by Derrick Rose in his first game back with the Knicks and the second unit went on a 33-10 run. Miami fought back as Kelly Olynyk started where he left off from an excellent opening term scoring nine points as the Heat took a 57-55 lead at intermission.

In other results around the Association:

Jerami Grant tied his-career with 32 points as the Detroit Pistons continued the defensive woes of the Brooklyn Nets winning 122-111.

Delon Wright continuing in the starting lineup with Rookie Killian Hayes still out with a torn labrum in his right hip had 22 points and 9 assists.

Kyrie Irving led the Nets with 27 points and 7 assists, while James Harden finished with 24 points and 12 assists as the team allowed Detroit to shoot 56% from the field and 44.8% from deep (13/29).

Brandon Ingram finished with 22 points, while Zion Williamson had 20 as the firing New Orleans tore the game apart in the last term sending the Houston Rockets to its second successive 20 point hiding winning 130-101.

New Orleans received a tremendous spark plug from Josh Hart who scored 20 to go with a career-high 17 rebounds as the Pelicans after dropping 10 of 13 have won four straight.

John Wall returning after missing the heavy loss to Charlotte as he manages his Achilles recovery led the Rockets with 25 points and 6 assists.

The Golden State Warriors led by Steph Curry’s 32 point performance starved off an San Antonio Spurs early fourth-quarter rally to motor away 114-91.

The Warriors got a tremendous boost from its second unit with Eric Paschall scoring 15 points along with 6 rebounds, Damion Lee with 11 and Kent Bazemore with 10 as the team made 17 triples.

Veteran Rudy Gay provided a lift for San Antonio top-scoring with 17 as the Spurs three-game winning streak came to an end.

All-Star Donovan Mitchell was the catalyst for Utah as it broke the game wide open using a 14-4 run in the final three minutes to close out the Boston Celtics 122-108.

Mitchell had a game-high 36 points and 9 assists, while Aussie star Joe Ingles finished with 24 points and 6 assists as the Jazz equal its best start (20-5) to a season since 1996/1997.

Jaylen Brown back after missing two games due to knee soreness led the Celtics with 33 points, while Jayson Tatum had 23 but for a second successive game endured a rough shooting night going only 7 of 20 from the field.

Damian Lillard was blazing scoring 36 points and the Portland Trailblazers sent the derailing Orlando Magic to its 14th loss in 17 games winning 106-97 in its first game back at the Moda Centre after completing a six-game trip.

Veteran Carmelo Anthony put up 23 points, in the process passing Oscar Robertson (26,710 points) for 12th All-Time in Scoring currently with 26,722 points.

Nikola Vucevic continues to display his consistent overall game leading the Magic with 27 points and 15 rebounds and Terrence Ross finished with 22.

One of this season’s MVP favourites Joel Embiid shook off a patchy shooting display posting 25 points, 17 rebounds and 6 assists as the East-leading Philadelphia 76ers made five free throws in the final 55 seconds to defeat the Sacramento Kings 119-111.

Tobias Harris had 22 points, 10 rebounds, while Aussie superstar Ben Simmons finished with 14 points, 7 rebounds and 9 assists.

De’Aaron continuing his recent scoring tear led Sacramento with 34 points and 10 assists, but was only 13 of 30 overall as Matisse Thybulle did a tremendous job of containing the speedy Point Guard.

By Juri Bilcich


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