The NBA Roundup: November 19, 2013

Zach Randolph and the Grizzlies continued their mastery of the LA Clippers, and Kevin Durant led OKC past the Nuggets in yesterday’s NBA action.

The Best:
  • Z-Bo and the Grizz are just too good, too physical for the high-flying Clippers. In this game of contrasting styles, the blue-collar bears of Memphis prevailed just like they did in last season’s Playoffs. Mike Conley ran the offense through Randolph down low and the big man worked Blake Griffin all night. The former Wolverine had one of his best games of the season so far, scoring 26 points on 10/16 FG shooting while also grabbing 15 rebounds and getting 2 steals.
  • The duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook was wonderfully dynamic against the Nuggets, combining for 68 points, 20 rebounds, and 13 assists. They didn’t shoot too well from the floor, but what matters is they got the W over a tough Western playoff contender.
Zach Randolph worked Blake Griffin all night.
(image from CBS Sports/USATSI)

The Worst:
  • Maybe someday Michael Kidd-Gilchrist will be a really consistently productive player. Right now, however, the Cats just aren’t getting much from him. MKG has been up-and-down to start this season, and he is averaging a little too many turnovers for someone who doesn't even make 1 assist per game. Against the Bulls, he registered just 4 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 turnovers in 26 minutes.
  • Richard Jefferson is still in this league doing what he does best – be mediocre. Apparently, that’s not good for the Utah Jazz, who have won just 1 in 12 games and is the worst team in the entire field. RJ shot just 2/9 from the floor to finish with 5 points and 1 rebound in (drumroll) 32 minutes.

Final Score: Portland 108, Brooklyn 98
Brooklyn, NY ( - LaMarcus Aldridge scored 27 points as the Portland Trail Blazers overcame a sluggish first quarter to top the Brooklyn Nets 108-98 at Barclays Center to claim their seventh straight victory. The Nets scored on 19 of their first 20 possessions en route to a 40-point opening quarter. Portland settled down defensively after that, as Brooklyn cooled off to the tune of 22 percent (9-of-41) from the floor in the second half. Wesley Matthews netted 24 points in the win, while Damian Lillard contributed 19 points and nine assists. Mo Williams added 12 points off the bench. Shaun Livingston, who started his second straight game for the injured Deron Williams, paced Brooklyn with 23 points. Kevin Garnett made his first six shots, but hit just 2-of-13 the rest of the way. The 19-year vet ended up with 16 points and eight rebounds. The Blazers won their seventh straight game for the first time since 2007, when the team ran off 13 consecutive wins.

Final Score: Chicago 86, Charlotte 81
Chicago, IL ( - Luol Deng had 21 points and hit a 3-pointer late that gave the Chicago Bulls some cushion in an 86-81 win over the Charlotte Bobcats. The Bulls shot just 36 percent but made 26 of their 31 free-throw attempts to push their winning streak to five games and improve to 5-0 at home on the season. Jimmy Butler returned after leaving the game in the third quarter with a right toe injury and finished with 14 points for Chicago. Derrick Rose and Carlos Boozer scored 12 points apiece, with Boozer grabbing 17 rebounds. Jeff Taylor scored 20 points off the bench to lead the Bobcats and Gerald Henderson had 16. Charlotte, in the midst of playing four games in six days, has lost two in a row.

Derrick Rose continues to struggle with his shot, but
it seems the Bulls don't mind too much as they
have been winning of late.
(image by Paul Beaty/AP)

Final Score: Oklahoma City 115, Denver 113
Oklahoma City, OK ( - Kevin Durant scored a game-high 38 points with eight rebounds and six assists, Russell Westbrook scored 30 points with 12 rebounds and seven assists and the Oklahoma City Thunder outscored the Denver Nuggets by 11 in the fourth quarter to win 115-113 on Monday night. In a game of runs, Oklahoma City saved the best for last when Durant scored seven points and Westbrook added five during a 14-4 run to pull the Thunder to within two, 99-97, with just over seven minutes to play. Later, the game was tied at 105 with under two minutes left when Westbrook missed back-to-back jumpers, but both times Serge Ibaka kept the possession alive with offensive rebounds. On the second one, Ibaka was falling backward when he launched the ball back toward Durant at the top of the key. Durant buried a 3-pointer with a minute and a half to go. After Kenneth Faried made 1-of-2 free throws, Westbrook crossed over Randy Foye and J.J. Hickson on the ensuing possession and blasted through the lane for a layup with 22.3 seconds left, giving Oklahoma City its biggest lead at 110-106, and the Thunder held on for the win. Ty Lawson scored 29 points with eight assists and Hickson tallied 18 points with 19 rebounds in the loss.

Final Score: Dallas 97, Philadelphia 94
Dallas, TX ( - Monta Ellis dished out 10 assists and scored 19 of his 24 points in the second half to help the Dallas Mavericks stay perfect at home with a 97-94 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday. Dirk Nowitzki and Shawn Marion netted 20 points apiece for Dallas, which has won eight in a row over Philadelphia. Jose Calderon scored 14 points and former Sixer Samuel Dalembert had 14 rebounds off the bench. The Mavericks improved to 5-0 at American Airlines Center. The Sixers led from the opening tip but went down on a Marion transition dunk late in the third quarter and never recovered. Evan Turner tallied 26 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for Philly, which has lost three in a row. Tony Wroten played well in relief of the injured Michael Carter-Williams with 19 points and five steals, and Thaddeus Young and Spencer Hawes each contributed a double-double. Young went for 12 points and 11 rebounds while Hawes scored 10 points with 11 boards.

Final Score: Golden State 98, Utah 87
Salt Lake City, UT ( - Before leaving the game, Stephen Curry scored 15 of his 22 points in a big second quarter and the Golden State Warriors beat the Utah Jazz 98-87 Monday night to sweep a home-and-home series between the teams. Curry exited with 8:50 remaining after Jazz forward Marvin Williams fell on his head as the two crashed to the floor. Curry -- who just had the ball stripped from him -- walked off the court with a towel over his head. Williams, 6-foot-9 and 240 pounds, landed on Curry's head with his hip but Warriors coach Mark Jackson indicated Curry was OK. Curry made three 3- pointers in the second quarter and the Warriors shot better than 68 percent, outscoring the Jazz 37-17 in the period to take control. Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes had 17 points apiece and David Lee scored 14 with 14 rebounds for the Warriors, who beat the Jazz 102-88 Saturday to finish a 3-0 homestand. Hayward scored 18 points -- but just six after the first quarter -- and Marvin Williams had 16 off the bench for Utah, which fell to 1-11.

Final Score: Memphis 106, LA Clippers 102
Los Angeles, CA ( - Mike Conley netted eight of his 15 points in a crucial stretch late in the fourth quarter as the Memphis Grizzlies stayed perfect on their road trip with a 106-102 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers from Staples Center. Zach Randolph turned in a 26-point, 15-rebound effort for Memphis, which improved to 3-0 on its current four-game California road trip after dropping the first three road tests of the season. The swing wraps up on Wednesday in Golden State. Marc Gasol tallied 23 points, nine rebounds and eight assists in the triumph. Kosta Koufos made all five of his shots for 10 points for Memphis, which played most of the game after Tony Allen was ejected for kicking LA point guard Chris Paul in the face. Paul became the first player since Magic Johnson to begin the season with 11 straight double-doubles and finished a rebound shy of a triple-double in defeat. Paul registered 18 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds. Blake Griffin chimed in with 23 points and 11 rebounds while DeAndre Jordan grabbed 16 boards.


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