LAL @ OKC: It was a heroic effort by Kobe Bryant (35 PTS, 7 AST, 3 REB, 3 STL, 2 BLK) and Dwight Howard (23 PTS, 18 REB) dominated in the paint, but the Lakers came up short. Kevin Durant was brilliant (36 PTS, 9 REB) and Russell Westbrook (33 PTS, 8 AST) hit five 3-pointers to lead the Thunder. WB had 27 by halftime and sparked a 41-point second quarter. Jodie Meeks (17) was hot off the bench for L.A., and OKC got some nice work from Nick Collison (13 PTS, 7 REB in 16:49) when it was needed most.
ORL @ SAC: The Magic played like a tired team on a long Western road trip. Nikola Vucevic (3 PTS) was overmatched by DeMarcus Cousins (17 PTS, 14 REB, 3 STL, 2 BLK) and even though Tyreke Evans (knee) was a late scratch, the Kings’ guards played well. Aaron Brooks (11 PTS in 19 minutes) started at PG, but Isaiah Thomas (17 PTS, 5 REB, 4 AST) got 29 minutes off the bench. Jimmer Fredette (15 PTS) also provided a spark to the second unit. Jameer Nelson (17 PTS, 6 AST) and Glen Davis (20 PTS, 11 REB) led Orlando.
December 8 Games
PHO @ LAC: It’s a matinee (3:30 Eastern) so be sure to have your Clippers active in leagues with daily changes. They have won four in a row, the Suns have dropped five straight. You might want to play Markieff Morris, whose role will expand if Michael Beasley is demoted as expected. It sounds crazy, but fragile, old Jermaine O’Neal might take over at C from Marcin Gortat, who keeps playing like a man who wants to be traded, much to the dismay of his fantasy owners.
SAS @ CHA: This is the kind of game where David Stern probably won’t throw a fit if the great Gregg Popovich coaches his own team. The Spurs played at home last night, their second string played well in Miami and their third string can give the Bobcats a tussle. Byron Mullens (ankle) is iffy, so it’s up to Kemba Walker and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist to keep things respectable. Danny Green played just 17:47 last night for the Spurs; how he’s used in a back-to-back might be an indicator of how that tender hamstring feels.
GSW @ WAS: Both teams played on the road last night and will be equally fatigued. It really comes down to whether Stephen Curry and David Lee can repeat their tremendous efforts after that big upset in Brooklyn. The Wizards did beat the overconfident Heat last week, to earn some support from their long-suffering home fans.