Rockets continue 2017 domination this week
On Monday, Jan. 22, the Houston Rockets continued to dominate the league in their matchup with the Miami Heat. The Rockets came out on top 99-90 in their home victory. James Harden started off the game slow, but he finished strong with 28 points, and Chris Paul continued to prove his worth to the team. Hassan Whiteside had a big 22 points and 13 rebounds, but his 7 turnovers did not help the Heat. The Minnesota Timberwolves have also emerged as solid contenders in the West. They traveled to Los Angeles to play the Clippers. Andrew Wiggins exploded for 40 points and Jeff Teague added 30 points in the Timberwolves’ 126-118 win over the Clippers. Blake Griffin finished the game with a triple-double.
The next day, Jan. 23, the Cleveland Cavaliers went to San Antonio to play with the Spurs, where LeBron James was about to become the seventh player to reach 30,000 points. James reached this milestone, but his 28-point effort was not able to help his team beat the Spurs as they lost 114-102. LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 30 points in the win.
The Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers faced off in the Staples Center as they continued their rivalry against each other. Rookie Kyle Kuzma went off 17 of his 28 points in the fourth quarter. This was just enough for the Lakers to pull out a 108-107 win over the Celtics at home.
Wednesday, Jan. 24, had the New Orleans Pelicans face off against the Charlotte Hornets. The combination of Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins was too much to handle for the Hornets, as the Pels came out on top 101-96. Dwight Howard continued to impress with 22 points and 16 rebounds.
The Philadelphia 76ers tried to get over the hump as a contender in the East with their game against the Chicago Bulls at home. 76ers’ Ben Simmons led the charge as he finished with his fifth triple-double of the year in their 115-101 win over the struggling Bulls.
Thursday night, Jan. 25, had the Denver Nuggets host the New York Knicks. The Knicks continued to struggle on the road as they lost 130-118 to the Nuggets. Nikola Jokić put up an impressing double-double for the home team. The Washington Wizards visited Oklahoma City, where the Thunder is beginning to surge into the team that they were projected to be. Both Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal put up over 40 points, but it was Westbrook’s effort that was greater as his team won 121-112. This is the Thunder’s sixth straight win.
Friday night, Jan. 26, had the Utah Jazz and rookie sensation, Donovan Mitchell, travel north of the border to Toronto to play the Raptors. Mitchell finished with a team high of 26 points as he and Ricky Rubio clutched a win over the Raptors. Jonas Valanciunas finished with 28 points and a 14 rebound double-double.
The Milwaukee Bucks faced the Brooklyn Nets, where Giannis Antetokounmpo erupted for 41 points as the Bucks dominated the Nets 116-91.
The struggling Dallas Mavericks hosted the Portland Trail Blazers, where the Blazers made easy work of the Mavs. Portland won 107-93 and Damian Lillard finished the game with 29 points.
Saturday, Jan. 27, presented the Thunder on the road with the Detroit Pistons, a game in which Carmelo Anthony reached 25,000 career points. This game was all Thunder as Westbrook finished with another triple-double on the season.
Andre Drummond impressed the Pistons with 12 points and 13 rebounds. The night game had a great matchup between the Golden State Warriors and the Celtics.
The key matchup in this was Stephen Curry versus Kyrie Irving. Curry’s dominance in this game was too much for the Celtics to handle, as the Warriors won 109-105.
Curry went crazy for 49 points, which included an 8 three-point field goal. Kyrie Irving also impressed with 37 points for the Celtics.
Sunday night, the Cavaliers hosted the Pistons in a matchup game where both teams were trying to end losing streaks. LeBron James narrowly missed a triple-double as he led his team to a dominating 121-104 win over the Pistons.
The Spurs continued to be a very quiet but successful team in the West as they played the Sacramento Kings. Although De’Aaron Fox led all of the game’s scorers with 26 points, the Kings were no match for the Spurs as