November 11,2018 at 7:00 PM
11/14/2018 7:00 PM
Sixers and Magic Meet at Amway Center
The Philadelphia 76ers (9-6) spent Monday night awaiting league approval for the trade that will land them Jimmy Butler, and in the meantime began a road trip that saw them drop the Miami Heat, 124-114. Despite 25 minutes of floor time, Markelle Fultz's shooting woes continued to plague the team, as he finished with five points on 2-of-8 shooting from field goal range. While the team determines how to allay fan fears that Fultz can't return to the form that the team drafted, Joel Embiid continued to buoy the team offensively, finishing the contest with a team-best 35 points, adding 18 rebounds en route to a double-double, while making 16-of-20 attempts from the foul line. JJ Redick contributed 25 points and three triples, while Ben Simmons shone on the back of a 13-point, seven-rebound and seven-assist performance. Furkan Korkmaz had 16 points and four boards off the bench for a Sixers team that now sits in third place in the Eastern Conference, two games behind the Milwaukee Bucks. The Orlando Magic (6-8) fell on the road to the Washington Wizards on Monday, 117-109, despite five members of the roster finishing the game with double-digit scoring. The Magic were efficient from the paint and long range, shooting a collective 48 percent from the field and 50 percent from beyond the arc, led in scoring by Terrence Ross, who dropped 21 points from the bench. Ross shot 4-of-5 from deep and went 3-of-3 from the free throw line, while starter Aaron Gordon was the beneficiary of a double-double behind 18 points and 10 rebounds. Nikola Vucevic followed suit with a 17-point, 11-rebound showing, and D.J Augustin put up 15 points and facilitated four assists. Orlando ranks third in total blocks through 14 games, with 86 to their credit. Wednesday marks the start of a four-game home stand for the team that will include visits from the Los Angeles Lakers and Toronto Raptors.
November 11,2018 at 7:00 PM
11/14/2018 7:00 PM
Wizards Host Cavaliers in Battle of Bottom-Dwellers
The Washington Wizards play host to the Cleveland Cavaliers at Capital One Arena on Wednesday. The Cavaliers (2-11) are coming off their best performance of the season, as they handed the Charlotte Hornets a 113-89 loss on Tuesday. What was really impressive was their defense, as they held Charlotte to just 35 percent from the field and 8-of-41 from three-point range. This is a team that has ranked as one of the worst defenses in the league all season long and holding the eighth-ranked offense to those ugly numbers is a step in the right direction. Tristan Thompson collected 11 points and 21 rebounds in that win, as he's having the best season of his career. In fact, Thompson now has four-straight double-doubles, as he's averaging 15.5 points and 16 rebounds per game in that span. Those are all-star caliber numbers and it pairs beautifully with breakout youngsters like Jordan Clarkson and Collin Sexton. The losses are going to come rapidly for this team but seeing improvements like this from your individual players is all you can ask for with where this franchise is at right now. The Wizards (4-9) come into this matchup in the midst of a modest two-game winning streak, as they desperately need to keep that going. It's clear what the issue is when looking at the statistics, as this club currently ranks 30th in points allowed and 29th in rebounding. The addition of Dwight Howard was supposed to help those numbers but they appear to be worse than ever. The fact that Howard has only played four games definitely plays a part in that though, as they need time to gel and figure things out on that end of the floor. What's also a fascinating development is the fact that Otto Porter Jr. hasn't played in the fourth quarter in three-straight games. Porter was a breakout for the Wizards last season and it's a wonder why his playing time is dropping off so immensely. They'll need 2017 Porter if they want to get out of this slump and keeping him off the floor is not a good way to fix that issue. Cleveland has won six of their last eight games over Washington, picking up 3-1 series wins in each of the last two years.
November 11,2018 at 7:30 PM
11/14/2018 7:30 PM
Bulls and Celtics Tangle in Boston
The Chicago Bulls (4-10) are searching for their third road win of the season, and spent Monday on the receiving end of a home loss to the Dallas Mavericks, 103-98. Zach LaVine finished the match-up with 26 points, five rebounds and five assists, going 0-of-6 from long range but making all but one of his 11 attempts from the charity stripe. Jabari Parker logged 16 points six boards and a pair of assists, while Chandler Hutchison pulled up just short of a double-double off the bench with nine points and nine rebounds to his name. It was revealed earlier in the week that Lauri Markkanen, who shone in the Bulls' 2017-18 campaign, is now expected to miss up to 11 weeks with his elbow injury. Chicago could use all the help they can get offensively, as they currently rank 23rd in the NBA in scoring, putting up a nightly average of 105.9 points. The Bulls are in fourth place in the Central Division. The Boston Celtics (7-6) will have had three days to lick their wounds following their Sunday road loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, 100-94. Boston appeared anemic in defeat, shooting 39 and 33 percent from field goal and long range, respectively, and were led in scoring by Jayson Tatum, who had 27 points, eight rebounds and shot 5-of-9 from downtown. Kyrie Irving managed 21 points, six assists and five steals, going 9-of-24 from the paint, while Marcus Morris subbed in for 13 points, six boards and three triples. Boston have now dropped two straight and are now looking fallible after being heralded as a contender out of the East this season. The Celtics have fallen to sixth place in the conference, behind the Charlotte Hornets in fifth.
November 11,2018 at 7:30 PM
11/14/2018 7:30 PM
Nets Play Host to Heat
The Miami Heat travel to New York to play the Brooklyn Nets at Barclay's Center on Wednesday. The Heat (5-8) come into this matchup losing three-straight and six of their last eight games in total, as they continue to struggle. What's really discouraging is the lack of defense, with Miami allowing over 120 points per game in those six defeats. That's an eye-popping statistic, as this was expected to be one of the best defenses in the league. It's no fault of Hassan Whiteside though, as he's playing the best basketball of his career right now. In fact, Whiteside is averaging 13.9 points, 15.2 rebounds and 3,3 blocks per game this season. Those are Defensive Player of the Year numbers and it's a wonder why this defense is so bad with him playing so well. Some of the absences are definitely playing a part in the struggles, with Dwyane Wade, James Johnson and Dion Waiters all out of the lineup. None of them are expected to return here, as they need to end this slide sooner rather than later. The Nets (6-8) suffered a devastating loss in their most recent game, as they lost their best player for the season. Caris LeVert currently leads this team with 18.4 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.2 steals per game but he'll now miss the remainder of the season after suffering a gruesome leg injury on Monday. It's now been diagnosed as a dislocated foot but he apparently won't need surgery. That hurts this team on numerous fronts, as they'll now have to lean on players like D'Angelo Russell, Jarrett Allen and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson much more. They didn't just lose LeVert, they also lost the game to the Minnesota Timberwolves. That marked Brooklyn's second-straight defeat and they simply can't allow this injury to bring them down. These young guys are plenty capable and they need to take this as an opportunity to improve. Brooklyn has surprisingly beat Miami in three-straight games coming into this matchup. Prior to that, the Heat won their previous six games over the Nets dating back to 2015.
November 11,2018 at 7:30 PM
11/14/2018 7:30 PM
Top-Seeded Raptors Welcome Pistons to Canada
The Detroit Pistons travel north of the border to play the Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Center on Wednesday. The Pistons (6-6) come into this matchup winning two of their last three games but that does cover up a more disturbing trend. In fact, Detroit lost five-straight games before that stretch, as that followed up a 4-0 start. These massive swings make this team hard to understand, as they look like one of the best teams in the east at times and one of the worst at other times. It's clear what the Pistons mentality is though, as they want to abuse opponents with their dominant frontcourt. Blake Griffin has been especially good, as he's leading this team with 24.1 points, 10.2 rebounds and 5,0 assists per game. Those are vintage Griffin numbers and he looks poised to regain a spot on the all-star team is he continues to play like this. What's also fascinating about this matchup is that Dwayne Casey will make his return to Toronto, as he had a ton of success for the Raptors across the last decade as their head coach. The Raptors (12-2) have catapulted themselves to the top of the standings, as the addition of Kawhi Leonard has worked wonders for this team. Not only is he playing at an MVP-level, Leonard has gelled seamlessly with this club. In fact, Toronto currently sits fourth in the NBA in scoring, with numerous role players taking huge strides this season. Players like Pascal Siakam and Serge Ibaka are having fantastic seasons and it's clear that Leonard has really opened things up for them. With all that said, Toronto is coming off their worst loss of the season, as they were beat by the New Orleans Pelicans, 126-110, on Monday. That's a club who has given a lot of teams problems this season and it does show the Raptors one major weakness, their frontcourt. Siakam, Ibaka and Jonas Valanciuas do present a solid frontcourt but it simply can't match up with the likes of Anthony Davis, who picked up a 20-20 line in that game. Toronto swept their four-game season series over Detroit last season and has won six-straight games over them in total.
November 11,2018 at 8:00 PM
11/14/2018 8:00 PM
Grizzles Face Off With Bucks In Midwest Battle
The Memphis Grizzlies take on the Milwaukee Bucks at Fiserv Forum on Wednesday evening. The Grizzlies (7-5) have certainly offered plenty of reason for optimism in the early going of the new season, with the return of star point guard Mike Conley from last year's heel injury certainly playing a major part. However, Memphis will come into Wednesday's contest having dropped three of their past five contests. Their most recent stumble came against the Utah Jazz, which defeated them by a 96-88 score on Monday night. Conley led the way with 24 points and added four rebounds and three assists. Marc Gasol poured in 16 points. Jaren Jackson, Jr. generated a 10-point, 11-rebound double-double that also included five blocks. Kyle Anderson posted seven points, hauled in 13 rebounds, dished out five assists and recorded one steal. The Grizzlies will continue to be without Dillon Brooks (ankle), Omri Casspi (knee), JaMychal Green (jaw), Ivan Rabb (illness) and Chandler Parsons (knee) on Wednesday. The Bucks (10-3) have seemingly taken the next step in their development to open the season, already notching victories against multiple quality teams. One of those unfolded their most recent time on the court, when they toppled the Denver Nuggets by a 121-114 score on Sunday evening. Brook Lopez led the way for the Bucks with 28 points, a total he supplemented with four rebounds, one assist, two blocks and one steal. Giannis Antetokounmpo filled out the stat sheet with 22 points, nine rebounds, eight assists, two steals and one block. Khris Middleton supplied 21 points, five rebounds and two assists. Malcolm Brogdon totaled 20 points, six boards, five assists and two steals. Eric Bledsoe contributed 12 points, eight rebounds, three assists, three steals and one block. The Bucks are likely to be without D.J. Wilson (hamstring) once again Wednesday. Milwaukee swept the two-game season series between the clubs during the 2017-18 campaign.
November 11,2018 at 8:00 PM
11/14/2018 8:00 PM
Pelicans Face Off With New-Look Timberwolves
The New Orleans Pelicans take on the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center on Wednesday evening. The Pelicans (7-6) have already had their fair share of ups and downs in the early going of the season, but they may be evening matters out a bit as of late. New Orleans will come into Wednesday's contest having won three straight games, with their most recent success an impressive 126-110 victory over the NBA-best Toronto Raptors on Monday night. E'Twaun Moore paced the Pelicans with 30 points. Jrue Holiday generated 29 points, 14 assists and three rebounds. Anthony Davis contributed a massive 26-point, 20-rebound double-double. Julius Randle, starting for Nikola Mirotic (ankle), posted 17 points, 12 rebounds and four assists. Both Elfrid Payton and Mirotic are considered game-time decisions for Wednesday's game due to their respective ankle injuries. The Timberwolves (5-9) hope that their season will finally begin to settle down now that they've officially traded Jimmy Butler to the Philadelphia 76ers. Minnesota scored the first win of the post-Butler era when they edged the Brooklyn Nets by a 120-113 margin on Monday night. Karl-Anthony Towns led the Timberwolves with 25 points, and he added 21 rebounds, three assists, two blocks and one steal. However, he also committed a game-high 10 turnovers. Jeff Teague excelled in his return from a knee injury, posting a 24-point, 11-assist double-double that also included one rebound and three steals. Derrick Rose delivered 23 points, six assists, two rebounds, one steal and one block. Taj Gibson managed a near double-double of 17 points, nine rebounds, one assist, one steal and one block. Wiggins totaled 13 points, six boards, three assists, one steal and one block. The T-Wolves will list Teague as questionable for Wednesday's contest due to his knee soreness. Recent trade acquisitions Dario Saric and Robert Covington are also likely game-time decisions due to the logistics of their arrival in Minnesota, while Wiggins and Jerryd Bayless share the same designation due to knee issues. The Timberwolves swept the four-game season series between the clubs during the 2017-18 campaign.
November 11,2018 at 8:00 PM
11/14/2018 8:00 PM
Knicks Visit Thunder
The New York Knicks will visit the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena on Wednesday. The Knicks (4-10) have had a shaky start to their 2018-19 campaign. They have lost four of their last five and two straight, including a 115-89 blowout at the hands of the Orlando Magic. The team showed some promise in the loss, as rookie forward Kevin Knox delivered 17 points and Enes Kanter finished with a double-double. Still, it has been a less-than-ideal start to the season for New York. Sophomore point guard Frank Ntilikina has struggled to fit into New York's lineup, shooting just 28 percent on the season thus far. He logged only six minutes of playtime against Orlando after a shaky start. All four of the Knicks' wins have come against sub-.500 teams. They will look to change that in OKC on Wednesday. Oklahoma City (8-5) has recovered beautifully after starting the season 0-4. Despite former MVP Russell Westbrook (ankle) missing the team's last four games, they are 3-1, and the Thunder have won eight of their last nine in total. Most recently, the Thunder dealt Phoenix a double-digit loss, winning 118-101. Paul George hit six three-pointers and scored 32 points to lead the team. Dennis Schroder, meanwhile, scored another 20. Schroder is averaging 16.9 points per game this season and has seen plenty of minutes with Westbrook's nagging injury. The Thunder have been a defensive force to be reckoned with this season, ranking second in the league in defensive rating and first in steals at 11.5 per game.
November 11,2018 at 8:30 PM
11/14/2018 8:30 PM
Jazz Travel to Dallas
The Utah Jazz will visit the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center on Wednesday. Utah (7-6) has won three straight heading into Wednesday's contest, a positive sign after a somewhat slow start to the season. Most recently, the Jazz defeated the Memphis Grizzlies, 96-88. Joe Ingles scored a team-high 19 points, following up a season-best 27 against Boston one game earlier. Ingles has been a key factor for Utah early on, averaging 14.2 points, 4.5 assists, and 4.5 rebounds per game. The Jazz have already taken down Dallas twice this season, winning the two games by a combined margin of 24 points. Utah will look to make it three in a row on Wednesday. Dallas (5-8) is starting to heat up, having won three of its last four games. The Mavericks are fresh off a 103-98 win over the struggling Chicago Bulls. Harrison Barnes led the team with 23 points. Rookie sensation Luka Doncic has been grabbing many of the headlines in Dallas. The 19-year-old lottery pick is averaging 19.6 points per game and has scored 20 points in three of his last four contests. Dallas will hope to fare better on Wednesday than it has in its previous two meetings with the Jazz. The Mavericks committed a season-worst 25 turnovers in their last matchup with Utah.
November 11,2018 at 9:00 PM
11/14/2018 9:00 PM
Suns Host Spurs
The Phoenix Suns will host the San Antonio Spurs at Talking Stick Resort Arena on Wednesday. The Suns are on another losing skid, as they dropped the last four games and have only captured two wins to start to the season. Phoenix (2-11) is overmatched by almost every Western Conference opponent, even with Devin Booker's 24.3 points per game which is good for 12th in the league this season. Booker is coming off a tough loss to the Thunder on Monday where he scored 19 points on 18 shots. Number one overall pick DeAndre Ayton has seen 34 minutes per game over the last five contests and is averaging 15 points and 10 rebounds on the season, however, his lowly block total (0.8) and general defensive presence has yet to be carved out. It is still extremely early in the young Arizona center's career, but a matchup on the block against LaMarcus Aldridge will test him from the get go on Wednesday. The Spurs (7-5) have also run into a bit of slump after they won just one of the last four games. Most recently, San Antonio dropped a matchup against the Kings in Sacramento. Pau Gasol (foot) and Rudy Gay (rest) are sidelined for the contest, which will leave Aldridge and DeMar DeRozan to do the heavy lifting. Aldridge is coming off a big 14 point and 18 rebound performance in the loss to the Kings and he also added three blocks, while DeRozan has cooled off significantly from his red hot start, but is still averaging an impressive 25.0 points, 6.4 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game.
November 11,2018 at 10:30 PM
11/14/2018 10:30 PM
Lakers Host Trail Blazers
The Los Angeles Lakers will host the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday at Staples Center. The Trail Blazers will head to Showtime to take on the Lakers, but their star point guard Damian Lillard (knee) is considered hopeful to play. Reports said that he did not practice on Tuesday, the slight bang up occurred on Sunday in the 100-94 win over the Celtics, but Lillard played through it and has now gone through the minor day-to-day rehab since. Portland (10-3) picked up their third straight win, all of which at home, but all of which against quality opponents in the Celtics, Bucks and Clippers. Alongside Lillard's questionable status, the Blazers announced Maurice Harkless (knee) will not be playing against the Lakers (7-6). Los Angeles is coming off their most exciting win of the season after LeBron James tipped in a shot to take a 107-106 lead on the Hawks, which was capped off on the following possession and waning seconds where new addition Tyson Chandler blocked Trae Young's lay up which sent the crowd at Staples Center into a frenzy. The tip in and blocked shot overshadowed James missing clutch free throws once again, as his free throw percentage on the season overall dropped below 50 percent in the final minute of the fourth quarter on the season. Meanwhile, Brandon Ingram is in a slump and has gone just 8-of-25 from the field in his last two games. The Lakers will look to make it four it in a row, with this being one of the tougher matchups amongst the next few games.