Besides the playoff like atmosphere for the New York Knicks vs Brooklyn Nets game at the Barclay’s Center, there were certainly a lot of interesting stories around the NBA on Monday night. First there was the dominating performance of the Oklahoma City Thunder over the season’s most pleasant surprise team, the Charlotte Bobcats. The Thunder led by Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, raced out a 64-24 halftime lead en route to a win so easy, you wonder if it will have lasting effects on the Bobcats, who are only a year removed for a 7-59 season.
The Chicago Bulls may also be wondering about lasting effects of a tough loss after they blew a 27 point lead at home on Monday night to the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks tied the game up with a 31-4 run in the fourth quarter. Ersan Ilyasova scored 14 of his 18 points in the miracle fourth quarter rally to stop the Bucks three game losing streak. The Bulls had just beaten the Bucks two nights ago in Milwaukee and had won nine straight games against the Bucks.
Another club with a fragile psyche might be the Los Angeles Clippers, who a week ago looked like title contenders, but have now lost four in a row. Tonight, they lost to the New Orleans Hornets, a team on a seven game losing streak, at home. Ouch! The Clippers fought back from a 17 point fourth quarter hole to have a shot to pull within three points with over a minute left. They got possession of the ball and then launched four three point shots, only to miss them all. One of them falling would have cut it to a three point lead. Blake Griffin fouled out with a career low four points.
The Memphis Grizzlies stayed hot with a win over the Cleveland Cavaliers 84-78 to run their record to 10-2. The Grizzlies had to outscore the Cavs 22-9 in the fourth quarter to pull out the win after a lackluster effort for three quarters. They closed the game out on a 16-4 run. Zach Randolph had 19 points in the game for the Grizzlies.
The Utah Jazz beat the Denver Nuggets in a tight 105-103 battle on Monday in Salt Lake City. Al Jefferson got 28 points to lead the Jazz, who also came back from a double digit deficit on this night of comebacks.
The Detroit Pistons got a win over the Portland Trail Blazers 108-101 at home. Young Pistons Brandon Knight had 26 points and Kyle Singler added 16. Seven Pistons in all were in double figures.
The Washington Wizards are still winless as they lost to the San Antonio Spurs 118-92. Seven Spurs finished in double figures as they cruised to another win to run their record to 12-3.