It was a painful evening for the Portland Path Blazers, regardless of extending their successful streak to 4 video games and clinching a playoff berth, outlasting the Brooklyn Nets 148-144 in double time beyond regulation.
The unhappy story facilities on the lack of Blazers’ middle Jusuf Nurkic, who crumpled to the ground with a ugly left leg harm early within the second time beyond regulation. It is a extreme setback for the Path Blazers’ probabilities to advance within the playoffs, which begin in lower than a month, and devastating for the 7-foot Nurkic, who was having a profession season with averages of 15.Four factors, 10.three rebounds and 1.Four blocks.
Jusuf Nurkic is carted off after his left-leg buckled as he fought for a rebound.
Nurkic’s stat line for the evening highlights his two-way presence within the paint: He had 4 blocks along with 32 factors, 16 rebounds and 5 assists earlier than being carted off on a gurney. NBA TV analyst David Griffin factors out that Nurkic’s defensive means is what the Blazers will miss most, with backup middle Enes Kanter missing in that space.
The Blazers already are coping with the momentary lack of CJ McCollum, who’s recovering from a left knee harm and won’t accompany the group on its upcoming four-game street journey.
Damian Lillard describes the adversity that Portland faces down the stretch and into the playoffs.
Level guard and group chief Damian Lillard was blunt concerning the influence of Nurkic’s loss.
“It is powerful, man,” Lillard mentioned. “We combat so exhausting all season lengthy and our beginning middle, certainly one of our principal guys, goes down. On an enormous evening for us, going into the postseason, it regarded unhealthy. It is sort of discouraging to see that. Particularly with CJ [McCollum] being out, it is simply one other factor. Extra adversity, it looks like, on the improper time.”
Booker catches hearth, will get no assist
Till Devin Booker heated up within the third quarter, the spotlight for the Phoenix Suns was Jimmer Fredette getting a standing ovation from Utah Jazz followers upon his pregame introduction.
However that shortly modified as Booker poured in 59 factors, together with 20 within the third quarter, to make it considerably attention-grabbing even because the Jazz cruised to a 125-92 victory over the Suns. With the win, the Jazz moved right into a tie with the Clippers for fifth place within the West.
It was essentially the most factors scored by any participant in Utah, both for the Jazz or a visiting group. Along with his factors complete, Booker joins James Harden and Kemba Walker because the gamers with essentially the most factors in a sport this season. Harden has scored 61 twice and Kemba Walker dropped 60 on the Sixers again in November.
Though it got here in a loss, Devin Booker set a report for essentially the most factors scored in Utah.
In an try and preserve Booker from scoring 60-plus, the Jazz triple-teamed Booker through the closing minutes and fouled one other participant with 18.6 seconds left so Booker would not get one other shot try. After the play, Booker regarded on the Utah bench with a smirk as he walked down the court docket.
The Jazz deliberately fouled so Booker couldn’t get one other bucket 😬 pic.twitter.com/7xgGjTbfN1
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 26, 2019
It isn’t precisely information that Booker wants assist if the woeful Suns are going to enhance. After Booker, the next-highest scorer for Phoenix was Deandre Ayton with 9 factors.
Booker scored 64.1 p.c of the Suns’ 92 factors. Per Elias Sports activities Bureau, that is the fifth-highest share of a group’s complete factors in NBA historical past. Three of the others have been recorded by George Mikan within the early ’50s, previous to the shot-clock period; the remaining one was Kobe Bryant’s 81-point sport vs. the Raptors in 2006, when he scored 66.Four p.c of the Lakers’ 122 factors.
The scoring disparity was readily obvious within the Suns’ halftime field rating.
Get Devin Booker some assist pic.twitter.com/PcWgnUAZXi
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) March 26, 2019
Magic’s playoff run
Shades of Dwight Howard: Do not look now, however the Orlando Magic are making a playoff run. The Magic, ninth within the Jap Convention standings and solely a half-game behind the eighth-seed Warmth, accomplished an unblemished five-game house stand with a convincing 119-98 win over the Phliadelphia 76ers.
With an enormous matchup with the Miami looming Tuesday evening, the Magic might be trying to lengthen their successful streak to 6 video games and get solidly into the playoff combine. Solely two video games within the loss column separate the Nets, Pistons, Warmth and Magic for the sixth by eight spots, with eight video games to play for Orlando.
Nikola Vucevic comes up massive for the Magic with 28 factors.
“Fan are getting behind us, and we’re combating,” mentioned game-high scorer Nikola Vucevic, who completed with 28 factors and 11 rebounds. “Stepping into the playoffs can be an enormous achievement for us.”
The Magic have not made the playoffs because the 2011-12 season, after they misplaced Four-1 within the first spherical to the Indiana Pacers.
On the shedding facet of the ledger, the already playoff-bound Sixers regarded lackluster. In equity, they have been enjoying with out Ben Simmons, who sat out with a abdomen virus. After surging the previous couple of weeks, Philadelphia — No. three within the East — has hit a bit of tough patch, shedding to 2 groups that they need to have dealt with, the Hawks in a tricky one on Saturday evening and Monday evening’s debacle. It illustrates how exhausting it’s to win on the street within the NBA.
The Sixers have been within the sport at halftime, however went with out a discipline purpose over a 12-minute stretch within the second half and by no means recovered.
Jonathan Isaac helped get the Magic flowing within the first quarter with this good transition dunk:
Bravo for Bruno
G League standout Bruno Caboclo turned in an NBA career-high 24-point efficiency as the Memphis Grizzlies defeated the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder 115-103, enjoying spoiler to a playoff group.
The skidding Thunder have misplaced 5 of their final six and are in a battle to keep away from the No. eight seed within the West and a first-round matchup with the Warriors or Nuggets.
Slam dunk for Gobert
Straightforward to miss within the Suns-Jazz tilt was the truth that middle Rudy Gobert handed the aforementioned Dwight Howard for the single-season report for many dunks.
Gobert slammed house six on the evening and moved to 274 on the season.
Rudy Gobert, who scored 27, completed this alley-oop go with a slam.
Little man with the dime
This pint-sized fan bought a thrill — the possibility to help the Jazz’s Donovan Mitchell in pregame warm-up.
Probably the most cute help ❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/fMO7vWXCJX
— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) March 26, 2019