An Aussie lit up in the best game of his young career.
Additionally, Klay Thompson rebounded strongly and led the Warriors to their first road win of the season.
Catch up on all the action of the day in our NBA wrap!
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GREEN’S CAREER GAME IS NOT ENOUGH WHILE MAVS FALL TO NUGS
The Denver Nuggets narrowly edged the Dallas Mavericks off the bench 98-97 Monday (all times AEDT) in a close fight behind Bones Hyland’s career-best 29 points.
Playing without three of their starters in Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and Aaron Gordon, the Nuggets dug deep to win away after Michael Porter Jr. sank a go-ahead triple with 55.2 seconds remaining.
Meanwhile, Australia’s Josh Green had his own career 23-pointer, coming off the Mavericks bench with six three-pointers in 30 minutes while posting a hyper-efficient 8-of-9 overall.
The 22-year-old Green has seen his minutes increase in recent weeks, with the 30 against Denver being a high of the season.
It came amid a bizarre sequence in the competition that saw teams repeat the final two seconds of the second quarter after half-time, after a review found Luka Doncic went wide as he tripled his buzzer.
Vlakto Cancar, who came on specifically for that two seconds put on the clock, fired a half-field shot for the Nuggets that whizzed through the hoop to give Denver a sudden boost before the third quarter.
“They’re talking about something that’s going to change the ebb and flow of the game… Cancar off the half-court in one of the weirdest situations ever we’ve seen,” the Mavericks commentator said.
It was ultimately a deciding factor in the game as the Nuggets won by just a point.
Doncic had 22 points, nine rebounds and eight assists for Dallas, who shot just 57 percent from the free throw line (12 of 21) and 44 percent from the field.
The result saw the Nuggets improve to 10-6 while the Mavs fell to 9-7.
SPLASH BROTHERS RELEASE THE EPIC KLAY BUNCE BACK
Steph Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 74 points and 17 three-pointers, and the Golden State Warriors defeated the Houston Rockets 127-120.
Thompson, bursting out of his early-season slump, would have been a particularly welcome sight for Warriors fans, exploding for the season-best 41 points and 10 triples while Curry added 15 assists.
Thompson, Curry and Andrew Wiggins’ 23 combined three-pointers were the most by a trio in NBA history.
It was the Warriors’ first road win of the season, with the defending champions now getting closer to .500 at 8-9.
“Steph has been out all season so it felt good to give him a little bit of a helping hand. It just felt good to have a big game,” Thompson said after the game.
“I’m my toughest critic – the first 10 games of this season haven’t been easy for me. Coming out and being myself again felt incredible and it’s just something to build on and move on from.”
Kevin Porter Jr. led the Rockets with 30 points, and Jabari Smith had a career-best 22 to help Houston stay within striking distance all game. But it was Golden State, led by Curry and Thompson, who had the answers on the stretch.
The Rockets lost their fifth game of their last six and now sit 3-14.
NETS BEAT GRIZZLIES ON KYRIES RETURNS
The Brooklyn Nets marked Kyrie Irving’s return from an eight-game suspension with a 127-115 win over Memphis.
Irving, who was suspended by the Nets after his social media post linking to a film condemned as anti-Semitic made a splash, scored 14 points in 26 minutes on the floor.
Kevin Durant led the Nets with 26 and Ben Simmons added 22 while seven Nets players scored in double figures.
That included Japan substitute Yuta Watanabe, who made four of the Nets’ 16 three-pointers en route to 16 points.
“It was great that he was out there for a few minutes and we got a win in the process,” said Nets coach Jacque Vaughn, who said he expects Irving and the team to focus on basketball going forward.
“At the end of the day, it’s all about the tire now,” Vaughn said of his message to Irving. “I used that word.
“From this day on, we will take care of it. Basketball is factual. You get the rebound, that’s a fact. They box out, that’s a fact. You take the shot, that’s a fact.
Embiid Leads Sixers Pass Bucks | 02:38
“So we’re going to do this thing factually. It’s about basketball and we’re going to live in that space.” The row over Irving, who was suspended a week after his post in late October for not apologizing, came the same week that Vaughn took over after Steve Nash succeeded the Nets’ 5-1 start to the season.
They’re now up to 8-9, with former rookie of the year Simmons finally coming to life for the team he joined in a trade last season after his relationship with Philadelphia soured due to struggles with a back injury and mental problems had worsened.
Simmons hit on 11 of 13 shot attempts for his first 20-point game since the 2021 playoffs for the 76ers – who will host the nets on Wednesday.
Dillon Brooks scored 31 points for the Grizzlies, who were without dynamic stars Ja Morant, Desmond Bane and Jaren Jackson.
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SUN TORCH KNICKS
A road trip that was supposed to be an absolute gauntlet for the Knicks suddenly had a chance to be a blessing.
But back-to-back wins over the Jazz and the Nuggets were followed by back-to-back double-digit losses to the Warriors and the Suns, with the latter suffering a chaotic 116-95 loss at Footprint Center that left the Knicks dominating the boards by a whopping 60-39 counts .
“The rebounding was a big problem. I thought we played well in the first half, but against a side like this you have to play well for all four quarters, 48 minutes,” said Tom Thibodeau. “So we had this break, you give a team like that a second try and a third try, they will make you pay for it and they did that. “
Cameron Payne had 21 points with nine assists and Devin Booker had 20 points on a 17-for-39 shooting performance (43.6 percent) from a 3-point range from a Suns team that was without Chris Paul (heel) and Cam Johnson (knee) played. .
Jalen Brunson posted a team-high 27 points, but slipping RJ Barrett and top scorer Julius Randle combined for just 21 on 7-for-22 from the floor for the Knicks, who will be looking to salvage a winning record in the Five City Journey Tuesday in Oklahoma City.
Of course, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and The Thunder inserted the Knicks for the season’s worst 145 points in a Garden blowout barely a week ago.
Embiid Leads Sixers Pass Bucks | 02:38
“Winning (Tuesday and) it’s still a great trip. Being on the road over .500, on this crazy journey, that’s good. So that’s what we’re focusing on,” said Barrett, who has gone 2-25 from 3-point range and 26.3 percent overall (20-76) in his last five games. “Definitely trying to end the road trip with a win. Good that we see her again so soon.”
Playing his first game since spraining his right knee on November 5 in Philadelphia, Mitchell Robinson scored two points with four rebounds in 17 minutes off the bench. Miles McBride contributed nine points in season-best 14 minutes, while experienced guard Derrick Rose was out in the second half with a sore right toe.
With recently started shooting guard Cam Reddish also not in the lineup, who suffered a sore groin against the Warriors on Saturday, Quentin Grimes had a strong game at least in his first extended playing time of the season. The sophomore guard finished the season with 10 points, eight assists and five boards in 32 minutes, which was a season-high. He had clocked 43 minutes in six previous appearances this season due to a foot injury sustained in training camp.
Isaiah Hartenstein started at center for the Knicks (8-9), but he caught two quick fouls and Robinson came off the bench at 8:24 in the first quarter.
The Knicks were 28-22 behind, with Payne scoring 10 and Booker scoring seven — including a four-point game. The Suns extended their lead to 11 in the second quarter, but Brunson hit a 9-0 run and converted a three-pointer to forge a tie in the final minute before the Suns took a 55-53 lead in carried the break.
However, long-range goals from Torrey Craig (14 points) and Booker sparked an 11-2 Phoenix sprint to take the score to 75-64 midway through the third. Extra 3 points from Booker and Duane Washington Jr. in the final minute of the quarter widened the gap to 17 before the Suns extended their lead to as many as 26 in the final third.
“Really, the whole game the rebound was critical. They built their physical presence from the start, plus-20 or whatever the glass said, plus-30 from 3,” said Randle, who didn’t play in the fourth quarter and finished with a season-low nine points. “We have to try to finish the journey and make a good journey out of it. Take it one day at a time, play at a time and hopefully (Tuesday) come in and take care of business.
– Originally published by Peter Botte in the New York Post
CUTS 95 SUNS 116
HORNETS 102 WIZARD 106
PISTON 129 KINGS 137
Grizzlies 115 NETWORKS 127
HEAT 87 CAVALIERS 113
WARRIOR 127 ROCKETS 120
lump 98 misfit 97
SPURS 92 Lakers 123