Three Things is NBC’s five-days-a-week wrap-up of the night before in the NBA. Check out NBCSports.com every weekday morning to catch up on what you missed the night before plus the rumors, drama, and dunks going that make the NBA great.
1) Let’s just watch some Ja Morant highlights and marvel
Just watch and enjoy.
This isn’t about Ja Morant leading the Grizzlies to a 118-110 road win over San Antonio. This isn’t about whether he will be named an All-Star Starter tonight or not. This is simply about watching and enjoying the most entertaining player in the game today — because he was in rare form, even for him, on Wednesday night.
This was insane.
As was this.
Just watch all 41 points he had on the night, including the dunks and ridiculous step-back 3s that make him nearly impossible to guard.
2) The Suns are both the best and hottest team, winners of eight straight
It’s January, so ultimately this doesn’t matter, but it’s worth stating:
If the playoffs started today, the Suns would run away with the title and hide.
Wednesday night they went into Utah and took care of business against a shorthanded Utah team (no Donovan Mitchell or Rudy Gobert). It was the Devin Booker show as he put up 43 points with 12 rebounds.
The Suns are 38-9 with the fifth-ranked offense and second-ranked defense in the NBA (using the NBA.com numbers, filter out garbage time and they are third in offense. Over the last 10 games the Suns are 9-1, fourth in offense and fifth in defense. They are 16-3 in clutch games (within five points in the final five minutes). Phoenix is balanced, versatile, deep and they play smart.
They are the best team in the NBA right now and they should be title favorites.
3) Charlotte scores 158 in regulation in beating the Pacers
The Hornets got 39 from Kelly Oubre, and a 29/10/13 triple-double from LaMelo Ball, and they ran away from the Pacers in the second half to beat them 158-126. Charlotte had a 147.7 offensive rating for the game.
Yes, 158 is a new high for any team this season, and they did it in regulation in a game with garbage time.
Highlight of the Night: Even Mobley puts Giannis Antetokounmpo in a poster
Evan Mobley is fearless, and he is not letting a former MVP and DPOY stop him from getting to the rim.
Cleveland with the very impressive 115-99 win over a Milwaukee team that had all of its big three. That’s a statement game.
Last night’s scores:
Cleveland 115, Milwaukee 99
Charlotte 158, Indiana 126
LA Clippers 111, Orlando 102
Atlanta 121, Sacramento 104
Miami 110, New York 96
Denver 124, Brooklyn 118
Chicago 111, Toronto 105
Memphis 118, San Antonio 110
Phoenix 105, Utah 97
Dallas 132, Portland 112