Orlando 125, Toronto 116
Studs: Jameer Nelson scored a team-high 30 points, and Dwight Howard made 14-of-16 free throws on his way to 24 points and 11 rebounds, but the real story for the Magic was the once great J.J. Redick. Redick started for Vince Carter, who sprained his ankle Friday night, and exploded for 27 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists, including 5 made 3-pointers. Chris Bosh led the Raptors with game-highs of 35 points and 16 rebounds, and Andrea Bargnani chipped in with 26 points.
Duds: Jose Calderon posted 10 points and 6 assists, but missed 2 more free throws, and now has more misses this season (4) than he did all of last year (3).
Game Notes: This game was an enigma statistically. Matt Barnes had 6 assists for the Magic, who made 17 3-pointers as a team, including 5 each by Nelson, Redick, and Ryan Anderson. Also, Howard shot only 38% from the field, but 88% from the free throw line… Orlando only recorded 28 points in the paint and had nearly as many offensive rebounds (14) as defensive rebounds (23)… Orlando committed only 9 turnovers and shot 53.1% from 3-point range, leading to only 5 fast break points for the Raptors.
Boston 97, New Orleans 87
Studs: Paul Pierce shot 10-for-14 on his way to 27 points, and was joined in double figures by Ray Allen (17), Kevin Garnett (14), Kendrick Perkins (12), and Rasheed Wallace (12). Rajon Rondo had 6 points and 10 assists; reaching double digit assists for the second straight game. Peja Stojakovic had 26 points, including 6 3-pointers, to lead the Hornets, who got 22 points and 8 assists from Chris Paul, on an economical 9-for-13 shooting.
Duds: Emeka Okafor and David West combined to shoot just 6-for-23 and reserve Bobby Brown made just 3-of-12 field goal attempts, as the Hornets shot just 42% as a team.
Game Notes: The game featured only 22 free throw attempts, as Boston was 9-for-14 and New Orleans was just 6-for-8… Boston outscored the Hornets 56-26 in the paint.
Miami 95, Chicago 87
Studs: Dwyane Wade led Miami with 25 points and Michael Beasley (10 points and 11 rebounds) and Udonis Haslem (19 points and 11 rebounds) notched double doubles, as Miami improved to 3-0. Luol Deng had 26 points to lead Chicago, who also got 17 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 4 steals from John Salmons.
Duds: Derrick Rose and Kirk Hinrich combined to shoot just 7-for-26, with 15 points, 6 rebounds, and 7 assists. Beasley had a productive game, but struggled shooting, posting a 3-for-12 effort from the field.
Game Notes: The game only featured 32 fouls, but Miami was able to turn 17 Chicago fouls into 25 free throw attempts… Miami's young, athletic lineup only managed 6 points in transition and 12 points off of 13 Chicago turnovers.
Portland 83, Oklahoma City 74
Studs: Steve Blake led a balanced Portland attack with 18 points on 6-for-9 shooting and Greg Oden stayed out of foul trouble, tallying a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Russell Westbrook had 23 points on 8-for-12 shooting to lead the Thunder.
Duds: Westbrook shot well for the first time this season, but committed 9 turnovers (No that's not a typo.) and fouled out after 32 minutes. Go-to-guy Kevin Durant put up 21 shots, but only connected on three, for a miserable 14.3% shooting. Oklahoma City's bench also struggled, only contributing 14 points to the cause. Portland's bench wasn't much better, tallying 21 points on 7-for-21 shooting. Brandon Roy also struggled, posting a 5-for-17 outing.
Game Notes: The Thunder shot just 34.3% from the line and made only 3-of-14 3-point attempts… The teams scored only 10 fast break points between them- 2 for Portland and 8 for OKC.
Denver 133, Memphis 123
Studs: Carmelo Anthony is asserting himself as a legitimate MVP candidate. Against Memphis, he posted 41 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists. Chauncey Billups added 22 points and 12 assists and Nene scored 18 points on a perfect 6-for-6 from the field. O.J. Mayo led the Grizzlies with 40 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assists, and Marc Gasol added a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds in a losing effort.
Duds: DeMarre Carroll missed all five of his field goal attempts and committed 3 turnovers in just 23 for the Grizzlies, who shot just 65.5% from the free throw line.
Game Notes: Memphis committed 20 turnovers, which turned into 29 Nuggets' points… The Grizzlies outscored Denver 40-35 in the first quarter, but allowed the Nuggets to surpass 30 points in each quarter… Hasheem Thabeet had his best game as a pro, making his only shot and posting 2 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 blocks. Oh yeah, he also fouled out. IN 12 MINUTES!!!
Phoenix 120, Minnesota 112
Studs: Channing Frye scored a game-high 25 points, on 8-for-12 shooting, and made 6 3-pointers as the Suns escaped a late push by the Timberwolves. Phoenix also got 23 apiece from Grant Hill and Jason Richardson, who made his first appearance of the season after a 2-game suspension for a drunk driving arrest. Ryan Gomes posted team-highs with 23 points and 15 rebounds for Minnesota.
Duds: Al Jefferson scored over 20 points for the first time this season, but only shot 9-for-23. He also recorded 8 rebounds for the second straight game, but has failed to reach double figures in three games this season. Steve Nash had 14 points and 14 assists, but shot just 5-for-12 and committed 7 turnovers.
Game Notes: Phoenix scored 67 first half point and shot 50% from the field, 53.8% from beyond the arc, and 80% from the free throw line… Minnesota committed just 8 turnovers, after a 9-turnover performance in the season opener against New Jersey. An impressive feat, made all the more surprising because they start a rookie at point guard.
LA Lakers 118, Atlanta 110
Studs: Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 41 points on 15-for-29 shooting, and added 8 rebounds and 5 steals to help keep the Lakers unbeaten. Lamar Odom flirted with a triple-double before finishing with 11 points, 14 rebounds, and 8 assists. Joe Johnson led the Hawks with 27 points and Jamal Crawford added 17 off the bench.
Duds: Josh Smith was just 3-of-10 for 7 points and Marvin Williams was 1-for-6 with 6 points for the Hawks.
Game Notes: The Lakers shot 52.9% from the field and scored an impressive 60 points in the paint… The teams combined to shoot 44-for-51 (86.3%) from the free throw line.