Houston 111, Sacramento 117: Can’t lose this game if you want to hold onto that 8th and final playoff spot, Houston. The Kings shot 55 percent on 3-pointers, 96 percent from the line, and despite only eight minutes from Jimmer Fredette, were able to hold off James Harden (30 points) and the Rockets. Isaiah Thomas of the Kings scored 17 in the 4th.
Oklahoma City 97, Phoenix 69: Thabo Sefolosha was +38 in only 34 minutes, which is pretty good, right? Friday, the Thunder beat the Suns by 31 at home, so elementary math tells me the Thunder beat the Suns by a combined 59 points in three days.
LA Clippers 102, New York 88: The Paper Clips owned the 4th, nobody other than ‘Melo (42 points) and Felton (20) could score for the Knicks, and the now-healthy Pacific Division-leaders removed the stench from Friday’s loss in Miami. CP3 put on a show (25 points, seven assists, one turnover), and former Knick Jamal Crawford (27 points) lit up the Garden. The Knicks are just 11-8 this calendar year.
Boston 118, Denver 114, 3 OT: The Celtics still haven’t lost since Rajon Rondo lost. Jason Terry scored 26, Paul Pierce had a monster triple double in 54 minutes (27 points, 14 rebounds, 14 assists) and took down the hot Nuggets. Have to bet on Charlotte tonight at home against Boston, right? No way the fossils cover … right?
Toronto 102, New Orleans 89: Any shot the Raptors make a run at the 8th seed in the East with Rudy Gay? Probably not, but it’ll be just as exciting watching the team handle DeMar DeRozan’s reaction to taking many fewer shots (only 3-of-7), while Gay is hoisting away (20 points, 19 shots). Austin Rivers watch, because you care: 4-of-6, nine points in 23 minutes. How rough of a rookie year has he had? He’s hitting 54 percent of FTs. Much worse than the 65 percent he made last year at Duke.
Orlando 110, Portland 104: The Magic’s 12-game losing streak is over. Nikola Vucevic, the steal of the Howard-Bynum blockbuster, scored 17 points and collected 19 rebounds. JJ Redick came off the bench to make 9-of-13 shots. He’s getting traded before the deadline, right? Portland rookie Damian Lillard, the runaway leader for rookie of the year, shot 1-of-16. How soon before the Lakers pass the Blazers for 9th in the West?