We are down to the final day of the NBA’s regular season, BBN – and things are getting heated. Let’s skip the small talk and get right to the good stuff.
LEBRON RETURNS RIGHT IN TIME FOR PLAYOFFS
Let’s start with some good news for our Laker fans this morning: LeBron is back. Hopefully for good this time. After a six-game absence, James returned to the court last night to help the Los Angeles Lakers defeat the Indiana Pacers 122-115 and better their chances of avoiding the dreaded play-in tournament.
James scored 24 points in the L.A. victory, to go along with seven rebounds and eight assists – all in just 28 minutes. The four-time NBA MVP has been out a large chunk of the last two months while recovering from a high ankle sprain. Our guy Anthony Davis led the Lakers with a 28-point, 10-rebound double-double. Davis missed L.A.’s last game because of a tight left thigh.
Last night’s win was the fourth straight for L.A. If they can manage to win tonight in New Orleans and Portland loses to Denver, they can snag the No. 6 seed. If not, they will be the No. 7 seed competing in the play-in tourney against the No. 8 seed.
LEBRON IS BACK!!! ??? pic.twitter.com/azHAXRsof0
— LakeShowYo (@LakeShowYo) May 15, 2021
AD on the way ? pic.twitter.com/gQANpzZeaT
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) May 15, 2021
KENTUCKY KNICKS BEAT HORNETS IN OT
The Kentucky Knicks continue to impress as we head into the postseason. Yesterday, they pulled off a gritty overtime win against the Charlotte Hornets to prove it. Julius Randle racked up another triple-double with 33 points, 13 assists, and 10 rebounds. That is his sixth triple-double of the season – and it came at a good time.
After mounting a huge comeback led by Miles Bridges, the Hornets took a small lead in the fourth quarter, but Randle wasn’t phased. He put the Knicks ahead in OT with a pair of free throws and assisted all five of New York’s baskets. That seems pretty good, right? After last night’s performance, Randle joined Carmelo Anthony as the only Knicks player to score a 30-point double-double in the last 10 seasons. Immanuel Quickley added 13 points to the Knicks’ effort.
PJ Washington and Malik Monk both had quiet nights for the Hornets, adding only four points each. The Hornets have been a bit inconsistent this season, but are sitting at No. 8 with a spot in the play-in tournament.
The Knicks have won 15 of their last 19 games. With last night’s win, they move into a tie with the Atlanta Hawks for the fourth spot in the Eastern Conference. If Miami wins tonight, it could create a three-way tie and make things really interesting. If not, the Knicks can clinch the fourth spot with a win over the Celtics today.
— x – NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) May 15, 2021
BOOKER LEADS SUNS TO VICTORY
With a win last night over San Antonio, the Phoenix Suns keep their hopes of a No. 1 spot alive. Even without starting center Deandre Ayton, Phoenix crushed the Spurs 140-103. Devin Booker led the effort with 27 points, shooting 10-18. Veteran point guard Chris Paul added a 16-point, 10-assist double-double.
Keldon Johnson and former Louisville Cardinal Gorgui Dieng led the Spurs with 18 points each, but it wasn’t quite enough. The Suns never trailed in the match and led by as many as 42 points. The Spurs are severely short-handed right now and played with only nine guys last night.
With their 50th win of the season last night, Phoenix moved within one game of Utah. The Jazz will end their season today in Sacramento while the Suns will face San Antonio again. The Suns have beaten the Jazz three times this season.
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) May 15, 2021
Here are the full stats from yesterday’s games:
|Julius Randle (NY)||118-109 W over Hornets (OT)||33||12-25 (4-10)||10||13||1||0||4||+10||46|
|Anthony Davis (LAL)||122-115 W over Pacers||28||9-18 (1-4)||10||5||2||0||1||+9||36|
|Devin Booker (PHX)||140-103 W over Spurs||27||10-18 (3-8)||2||4||0||0||2||+32||26|
|Karl Anthony Towns (MIN)||124-108 L to Celtics||24||9-19 (0-5)||14||2||0||0||3||-10||27|
|Keldon Johnson (SA)||140-103 L to Suns||18||6-11 (1-6)||2||0||0||0||4||-30||25|
|Immanuel Quickley (NY)||118-109 W over Hornets (OT)||13||4-8 (2-6)||2||1||0||0||0||+18||24|
|Nerlens Noel (NY)||118-109 W over Hornets (OT)||8||4-5||11||0||2||5||0||+11||34|
|Jarred Vanderbilt (MIN)||124-108 L to Celtics||7||3-4||6||0||1||0||0||-11||16|
|Bam Adebayo (MIA)||122-108 L to Bucks||5||2-9||8||8||2||0||2||-7||33|
|P.J. Washington (CHA)||118-109 L to Knicks (OT)||4||2-11 (0-5)||10||1||0||0||0||-18||32|
|Malik Monk (CHA)||118-109 L to Knicks (OT)||4||2-8 (0-4)||1||1||0||0||0||+8||15|
|Tyler Herro (MIA)||122-108 L to Bucks||3||1-9 (0-5)||6||2||0||0||3||-12||18|
TODAY IN THE NBA:
1:00 p.m. – Celtics at Knicks (Knox, Noel, Quickley, Randle)
1:00 p.m. – Pacers at Raptors
1:00 p.m. – Hornets (Monk, Richards, Washington) at Wizards
2:00 p.m. – Suns (Booker) at Spurs (Johnson, Lyles)
3:30 p.m. – Grizzlies at Warriors (Mulder)
7:00 p.m. – Rockets (Wall) at Hawks
7:00 p.m. – Cavaliers at nets
7:00 p.m. – Magic at 76ers (Maxey)
8:00 p.m. – Heat (Adebayo, Herro) at Pistons (Diallo)
9:00 p.m. – Bucks at Bulls
9:00 p.m. – Mavericks (Cauley-Stein) at Timberwolves (Towns, Vanderbilt)
9:00 p.m. – Lakers (Davis) at Pelicans (Bledsoe)
9:00 p.m. – Clippers (Cousins, Rondo) at Thunder (Gilgeous-Alexander)
9:00 p.m. – Nuggets (Murray) at Trail Blazers (Kanter)
9:00 p.m. – Jazz at Kings (Fox)