The game itself was not terribly interesting. Boston went on an 18-4 run in the second quarter to open up a comfortable lead at home against Miami, and the outcome never felt seriously in doubt after that moment.
But the highlight of the game goes to Miami’s Josh McRoberts, who got the ball out near the top of the key and nutmegged Kelly Olynyk with the bounce pass to a cutting Goran Dragic for the bucket. It’s a thing of beauty. The best Miami highlight of the night, even better than this Hassan Whiteside dunk.
Utah’s Trey Lyles drives, Gorgui Deng isn’t going to stop dunk
He’s added to his skills set — we saw it at Summer League, and you can see it on the play above. Lyles just bodies up then spins and drives by Ricky Rubio like he’s not there. Minnesota’s Gorgui Deng rotates over, but he’s not going to stop this.
Utah picked up the 112-103 win, behind a combined 48 points on 29 shots from Gordon Hayward and George Hill.
Watch Russell Westbrook rack up third straight triple-double
Westbrook put on a show at Madison Square Garden recording his third-straight triple-double with 27 points, 18 assists, and 14 rebounds leading the Thunder to a 112-103 win against the Knicks. Westbrook was 9-of-23 shooting, but he got some help from Enes Kanter who had 27 points on 17 shots off the bench.
Westbrook needed 11 rebounds in this game to average a triple-double on the young season, and he got there. Officially he is at 30.9 points, 10.3 rebounds and 11.2 assists per game. The last person to average a triple-double for a season was Oscar Robertson, but ESPN’s Ryen Russillo makes a good point about the comparison.
Oscar had 31/12.5/11.4 in triple double season. But NBA avg 107.7 FGApg in '62. Russ is doing it in a league that averages 85.6 FGApg
Newly minted Hall of Famer Allen Iverson is the patron saint of undersized NBA players.
Boston’s All-Star Isaiah Thomas is the current leader of that movement. In Toronto last All-Star weekend, Iverson sought out Thomas at an NBA event and talked to him, saying he liked his game, according to Chris Forsberg of ESPN. They have stayed in touch, up through Thomas’ effort to spur a Boston comeback against Minnesota last week and get the win. Which led AI to reach out again.
Thomas told ESPN the entire conversation went more like this:
“It was real early in the morning that he texted, like 8:30, so he must have been watching highlights [of the Minnesota game] or something,” Thomas said, unable to muffle a smile. “I told him, ‘I appreciate it and that I’m just trying to be like you.’ He was like, ‘Say no more.’ Those texts man, it just motivates me to keep going. Someone like that is watching me without me even reaching out to him, so I guess I’m doing something right.”
Thomas is averaging 26 points a game this season, he is doing something right. He’ll also have a lot more space to operate and do more things with Al Horford back in the lineup.