NBA wRap: Rockets cool off Heat, Blazers wallop Cavs
MANILA, Philippines – The struggles of the Cleveland Cavaliers continued while the Houston Rockets became the first team in the young NBA season to win five games. All that and more in the November 5 edition of the NBA wRap.
Milwaukee Bucks (2-2) 87 - 81 Indiana Pacers (1-3)
MIL: Brandon Knight: 23 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists
IND: Roy Hibbert: 16 points, 7 rebounds, 5 blocks
That got feisty: In the fourth period, Bucks guard Jerryd Bayless decided to get physical with Roy Hibbert and pushed the big man during a deadball situation after the two got into a verbal altercation. Both guys were quickly separated.
So, what happened there? Brandon Knight was the best player on the court - something people don't usually say - against the Pacers on Wednesday. However, he did have one play that was, to say the least, kind of funny. Check it out here:
Washington Wizards (3-1) 98 - 83 New York Knicks (2-2)
WAS: Paul Pierce: 17 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists
NYK: Carmelo Anthony: 18 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists
Streaking Wizards: Washington won their third straight game, and is 3-0 this season when Nene plays. The Wiz had three players - Drew Gooden, Kevin Seraphin, and Andre Miller - score in double figures off the bench.
Throwing bricks: As a team, the Knicks shot just 37% from the field. Anthony was particularly struggling, making just 8 of his 23 attempts after entering the game shooting above 50% for the season.
Houston Rockets (5-0) 108 - 91 Miami Heat (3-1)
HOU: James Harden: 25 points, 10 assists, 9 rebounds
MIA: Chris Bosh: 21 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals
Raining 3s: The Rockets took 37 3-pointers as a team and made 17, with Trevor Ariza going 5-of-8. He finished with 19 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists, helping Houston remain unbeaten and become just the first team this season to win 5 games.
Harden was just one rebound shy of a triple-double, scoring 25 points with 10 assists and 9 rebounds for the Rockets, who also got 26 points from Dwight Howard.
The win the Rockets are off to their first 5-0 start since opening 6-0 during the 1996-97 season.
Toronto Raptors (3-1) 100 - 88 Oklahoma City Thunder (1-4)
TOR: Patrick Patterson: 14 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists
OKC: Serge Ibaka: 25 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists
Highlight of the Day: Terrence Ross is a former NBA Slam Dunk Champion. So him throwing down a half-court alley-oop jam is definitely a must-watch: <script src="http://player.espn.com/player.js?pcode=1kNG061cgaoolOncv54OAO1ceO-I&width=576&height=324&externalId=espn:11824001"></script>
The Injury Bug is Undefeated: In the opening minutes of the third quarter, OKC small forward Perry Jones III's knee collided with a Patrick Patterson rendering him out for the rest of the game as he was helped out of the playing court. OKC now has only 7 healthy players in its roster after Jones was seen limping out of the arena:
Tweet of the Day: Reggie Jackson perfectly says the current state of the OKC Thunder's morale:
Reggie Jackson: "It feels like a nightmare that I can't wake up from."— Darnell Mayberry (@DarnellMayberry) November 5, 2014
New Orleans Pelicans (2-2) 100 - 91 Charlotte Hornets (1-3)
NOP: Anthony Davis: 24 points, 13 rebounds, 3 blocks
CHA: Gary Neal: 21 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists
AD is for Athletic Domination: Anthony Davis continued his impressive start to the NBA season with another stat-sheet filler of a performance. He also threw down an impressive alley-oop - he does that a lot - against the Hornets' paltry defense in the third quarter:
Bad Lance: On Tuesday, November 4, Lance Stephenson was a few assists and rebounds away from a triple-double. On Wednesday, he played the exact opposite, putting up just 2 points on 1-of-6 shooting and throwing away 5 turnovers.
Chicago Bulls (3-1) 98 - 90 Orlando Magic (0-4)
CHI: Jimmy Butler 21 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists
ORL: Nikola Vucevic: 19 points, 13 rebounds, 2 assists
David beats Goliath: Aaron Brooks is generously listed 6-feet-tall. Nikola Vucevic is close to 7-feet. Both guys met at the rim. Guess who won:
A reason to be concerned?: Derrick Rose was initially expected to play against the Magic, but was ruled out at the last minute due to injuries to his ankles, plural. Joakim Noah also missed the game because of an illness.
Portland Trail Blazers (2-2) 101 - 82 Cleveland Cavaliers (1-2)
POR: Damian Lillard: 27 points, 7 assists, 6 rebounds
CLE: Kevin Love: 22 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists
Throwing Bricks: Kyrie Irving went a disastrous 3-of-17 from the field, while LeBron James and Dion Waiters were 4-of-12 and 3-of-11, respectively. The three went a combined 10-of-40. As a team, Cleveland started 10-of-10 from the field but went 21-of-75 after.
Out of sorts: At one point in the 4th quarter, LeBron nearly stole the ball which would have led to a breakaway dunk. However, James mistimed his leap for the steal and instead of getting back on defense, lingered for a few seconds and watched Wesley Matthews sink a wide-open three-ball. There have been reports James has an injured muscle in his back, and so far it looks like the injury is affecting him.
Bad History: Wednesday's game against Portland marked the first time since November 5, 2003, that LeBron was held scoreless in the second half. He also had 11 points - his lowest output since December 5, 2008.
Revenge: Damian Lillard was cut from this past summer's Team USA roster, in most part, because the coaching staff elected to go with Kyrie Irving instead. With a 27-7-6 stat line, along with thoroughly outplaying Irving on Wednesday, it must have felt nice for Lillard to have some sort of vengeance.
Phoenix Suns (3-1) 112 - 106 Los Angeles Lakers (0-5)
PHX: Markieff Morris: 23 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists
LAL: Kobe Bryant: 39 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist
Bench Mob: Phoenix got major contributions for their two major guys off the bench, Isaiah Thomas and Gerald Green, who combined for 48 points, 10 assists, and 6 rebounds.
Runner up for Tweet of the Day: Kobe Bryant took 37 shot attempts today. This might be a worthy explanation why: https://twitter.com/CBSSportsNBA/status/529871279763886080
Gerald Green is mean: Over the past few years, Gerald Green has added different facets to his game like hitting jumpers and grabbing a few rebounds here and there. But he can still dunk, as Jordan Hill clearly knows now:
Fantasy Line of the Day: James Harden entered Miami and came out having set the American Airlines Arena on fire, going off for 25 points, 10 assists, and 9 rebounds. He shot 6-of-13 from the field, 3-of-7 from downtown, 10-of-10 from the free throw line, had 2 blocks, 1 steal, and committed 5 turnovers.
– with reports from Agence France-Presse/Rappler.com