What you missed while falling asleep during the Pro Bowl….
Suns 104, Hornets 102: The Suns were the better team for 47:40 but in those final 20 seconds they almost choked it away. The Suns were up 8 when Chris Paul knocked down a three (because he’s clutch). Then Trevor Ariza got a steal and CP3 lured Channing Frye into fouling him as he shot a three. Been a rough weekend for Frye. Anyway, Paul sank all three free throws and it was a two-point game. Then Grant Hill threw the ball out of bounds on the inbound pass. Hornets ball with a chance to tie or win — and Hill made up for his error by blocking Marcus Thornton at the rim. Chris Paul got one last desperation three but he was more trying to draw another foul and didn’t have any luck. Suns escape with a nice win — and Marcin Gortat is really starting to give them a presence at center.
Sixers 110, Nuggets 99: Remember the theory that Denver could keep Carmelo Anthony around if they could show him the Nuggets were contenders? Contenders play defense. Denver does not. Andre Iguodala had 24 points on 12 shots and the Sixers shot 55.1 percent as a team.
Magic 103, Cavaliers 87: This makes 20 losses in a row for the Cavs, and it was simply a matter of the superior talent on Orlando overwhelming Cleveland. That was particularly true in the paint and on the glass — Orlando had 24 offensive rebounds, with Ryan Anderson leading the way with 9. They grabbed the offensive rebound on 45 percent of their missed shots. Orlando was not particularly sharp, but they didn’t have to be.
Knicks 124, Pistons 106: With Shawne Williams suspended for the night Timofey Mozgov got his first run since Jan 8 — and he looked good. Like what a lot of us expected of him this season. He rolled to the hoop well on picks, showed off a midrange game and filled the paint up well for the Knicks. Mozgov finished with 23 points on 9-of-15 shooting (he missed his first four then got hot), plus grabbed 14 boards. It will be interesting to see what Mike D’Antoni does with him now, but Mozgov earned more burn.
Warriors 96, Jazz 81: How bad is the Jazz’s offense without Deron Williams? The put up a pathetic 91 points per 100 possessions pace on the Warriors. The defense-averse Warriors.