NBA round-up: Jazz out of tune, Knicks and Wizards runs ended
The Utah Jazz went down to the Minnesota Timberwolves, while the New York Knicks and Washington Wizards crashed back down to earth.
The NBA-leading Utah Jazz were upstaged by the lowly Minnesota Timberwolves for the second time in three nights, beaten 105-104 on Monday.
Utah, who lost 101-96 to the Timberwolves on Saturday, led 104-103 with 6.4 seconds remaining on the road in Minneapolis.
But the Timberwolves rallied, Ricky Rubio finding D'Angelo Russell for the layup before Jazz All-Star Mike Conley (26 points) lost the ball in a scramble on the final possession as time expired.
With the win, the Timberwolves claimed a series sweep of the Jazz – going 3-0 this season. It is the first time in NBA history a team with a win percentage below .300 swept a series of at least three games against a team with a win percentage of at least .700.
Russell posted 27 points behind a season-high seven three-pointers, star team-mate Karl-Anthony Towns finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds, while Anthony Edwards added 14 points for the Timberwolves (18-44) – who have the joint-second fewest victories this season.
The Jazz (44-17) are now only one game clear of the red-hot Phoenix Suns (43-18) in the Western Conference.
Phoenix closed in on Utah after snapping the New York Knicks' nine-game winning streak via a 118-110 victory.
Devin Booker fuelled the Suns by scoring 33 points, while Chris Paul (20) and Mikal Bridges (21) contributed on the road.
Spurs survive shoot-out as Westbrook closes in on record
DeMar DeRozan's 37 points and 10 assists helped the San Antonio Spurs to a 146-143 overtime win at the Washington Wizards, who lost for the first time in eight games. Not even Bradley Beal's game-high 45 points nor Russell Westbrook's league-leading 29th triple-double (22 points, 13 rebounds and 14 assists) could extend Washington's streak. Westbrook now has 175 career triple-doubles, seven away from breaking Oscar Robertson's record for the most in history.
Zion Williamson showcased his efficiency as the New Orleans Pelicans upset the Los Angeles Clippers 120-103. Williamson had 23 points on eight-of-11 shooting, including a three-pointer and five assists.
The Philadelphia 76ers snapped a four-game skid thanks to their 121-90 rout of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Philadelphia had an NBA-season high 22 steals at home to the struggling Thunder, who suffered a franchise-worst tying 14th consecutive defeat. The 76ers went 0-4 in Ben Simmons' absence but the All-Star returned to have 12 points on six-of-eight shooting, four assists, three rebounds, three steals and two blocks.
Double-doubles from Dennis Schroder (21 points and 10 assists) and Andre Drummond (3 points and 11 rebounds) guided defending champions the Los Angeles Lakers past the Orlando Magic 114-103. Anthony Davis had 18 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two blocks for the Lakers.
Michael Porter Jr. put up 31 points as the short-handed Denver Nuggets defeated the Memphis Grizzlies 120-96. MVP candidate Nikola Jokic tallied his league-leading 53rd double-double of 24 points and 15 rebounds.
Hawks struggle from beyond the arc
It was a forgettable outing for the Atlanta Hawks, who were beaten 100-86 by the lowly Detroit Pistons. Atlanta were particularly awful from three-point range, where they shot just 14.8 per cent after making only four of their 27 attempts.
The Toronto Raptors topped the Cleveland Cavaliers 112-96, but it was not the best of games from star Fred VanVleet. In 32 minutes, VanVleet was just three-of-10 shooting, making only one of five three-point attempts for eight points.
On a miserable night for the Clippers, Paul George headlined their woes. The All-Star was three-for-11 shooting, while making just one of his six three-point attempts for nine points.
Bol Bol with authority!
One of the tallest players in the NBA, Nuggets big man Bol Bol showcased his quick hands and feet en route to the basket as he finished emphatically against the Grizzlies.
Nets at Raptors
Kevin Durant and the Eastern Conference-leading Brooklyn Nets (41-20) are on the road against the Raptors (26-35) on Tuesday.