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NBA Wrap February 11th


IMAGE: Bright Side Of The Sun




SUNS WIN THRILLER OVER BUCKS AS ANTETOKOUNMPO MISSES GAME-WINNER


The contest between the Suns and Bucks had free flowing scoring all-round.


Ultimately the 48 minutes came down to one shot, and one defensive stop.


As the buzzer sounded, Phoenix pulled up victors.


Phoenix’s hot run continues led by Devin Booker with 30 points, and Chris Paul 28 points dishing out 7 assists as the Suns won for the seventh time in eight games pipping the Milwaukee Bucks 125-124.


2-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo put a spectacular performance dominating his way inside finishing with a season-high 47 points to go with 11 rebounds and 5 assists but missed the game-winning jumper.


After a high octane opening half with offence coming from all different sections of the court, Milwaukee grabbed the incentive going on a 15-7 run to open up the game’s largest lead of 16. The Bucks took a 71-59 lead into intermission.


Having fallen behind, Phoenix burst out of the blocks in the opening four minutes as the poise of Paul and the energetic plays of De’Andre Ayton and Mikal Bridges who had a dunk of a Bucks’ turnover helped propel a 16-8 Suns run forcing Mike Budenholzer to call timeout.


As Milwaukee did late in the opening half, they turned to the firing dimensions of Antetokounmpo who with brute prowess willed himself to the free throw line and inside the paint stretching the lead to 12 on Bobby Portis’ short jumper.


The fourth term would deliver back and forth momentum swings with three early lead changes, then Phoenix with Paul and Booker who could not miss built the Suns lead to eight with two and a half minutes to play.


Milwaukee, the team with Championship aspirations refused to relinquish as Antetokounmpo put in once last Herculean effort and with the support of 2-time All-Star Khris Middleton levelled proceedings at 124 when he made a perfectly placed assist for the Greek Freak’s dunk.


Booker drew a foul at the other end, unfortunately splitting a pair of free throws to give Milwaukee the chance to prolong its five-game winning streak.


Antetokounmpo would be the recipient for one final play, getting the ball from the inbounds taking a couple of dribbles pulling up for the win. However his shot went long to cap off the best victory of the Season for Phoenix and Milwaukee’s third loss this Season by a single possession.


DONCIC’S TRIPLE-DOUBLE HELPS MAVERICKS NARROW HAWKS


A game consisting of multiple momentum swings fittingly came to one play.


Normally, Atlanta turn to superstar Trae Young to deliver, but it would not be him, instead it was veteran Danilo Gallinari.


However he missed the game-winning shot and Dallas triumphed.


Luka Doncic finished with 28 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, while Jalen Brunson provided a spark of the bench scoring 21 points as the Dallas Mavericks won a thriller over the Atlanta Hawks 118-117 for its third successive victory.


John Collins put a tremendous game leading the Hawks with 33 points and 8 rebounds, while Trae Young finished with 25 points and 15 assists for Atlanta who only have a half game lead over the surging Miami Heat for the East’s number 8 seed.


The game ultimately would be decided in the final 4.7 seconds. With possession of the ball Atlanta were looking to get in Young’s hands but he got hit hard on the Willie Cauley-Stein screen forcing Kevin Huerter to inbound it to Gallinari. The veteran with the ball in his hands took a few dribbles hoping for a clean look, that did not eventuate as the excellent defence of Tim Hardaway Jr made him take a tough leaning jumper.


After the play, Young seething by the non-call stormed in the direction of one of the three referees visibly angry by the fact he thought an illegal screen was not called.


There would be a plethora of scoring in the first 24 minutes with the sides shooting lights out. By the midway point of the third, Atlanta got the jump building a double-digit lead as many as 13 on Collins’ jumper with five and a half minutes left.


Brunson’s pull-up jumper before the buzzer sliced Atlanta’s lead to nine with a quarter remaining,


The fourth would be when Tim Hardaway Jr began firing on all cylinders. After a subdued first three quarters where he was quelled, the two-guard began to torch from the floor scoring 13 points, including three triples all part of a 20-11 Mavericks run to square the contest at 101 with 6:34 left.


Dallas has won all three games on this six-game home stand and aims to keep it intact when Zion Williamson and the New Orleans Pelicans arrive. Atlanta heads home for a matchup with the San Antonio Spurs.


In other results around the Association:


LeBron James for a second consecutive outing helped the Los Angeles Lakers eclipse the Oklahoma City Thunder in Overtime 114-113.


The 4-time NBA Champion led the purple and gold with 25 points, 6 rebounds and 7 assists.


Wise head veteran Al Horford led the Thunder with 25 points, 8 rebounds and 8 assists, while Kenrich Williams in his third start in four games had 24 points.


The Brooklyn Nets strung by far its best collaborative defensive performance holding the Indiana Pacers to a season-low 30 first half points on route to a 104-94 victory at the Barclays Centre.


Kyrie Irving led Brooklyn with 35 points and 8 assists, while James Harden had 19 points, 11 rebounds and 5 assists.


The Toronto Raptors led by Norman Powell’s 28 points and 2019 Most Improved Pascal Siakam’s 26 ran riot in a 137-115 pasting of the Washington Wizards.


Bradley Beal top-scored for Washington with 24 points, while 2017 MVP Russell Westbrook finished with 23 points and 7 assists.


Kyle Anderson scored 27 points and Dillon Brooks had 20 as the Memphis Grizzlies sunk a franchise-record 23 made threes in the comfortable 130–114 win over the Charlotte Hornets.


Kawhi Leonard paced the Los Angeles Clippers with 36 points as it helped spoil the return of Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl Anthony-Towns who missed 13 games due to COVID-19 protocols in a 119-112 win.


Scoring machine Zach LaVine hit high gear scoring 46 points, as the Chicago Bulls sunk 25 triples in its 129-116 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans.


Zion Williamson as usual productive leading the Pelicans with 29 points, while Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball each scored 21.


Paul Millsap scored a season-high 22 points and the Denver Nuggets broke its three-game losing streak in dominating fashion dismantling the offensively challenged Cleveland Cavaliers 133-95.

By Juri Bilcich

SportFM

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