My advice to go ‘all-in’ on Kobe Bryant in daily leagues backfired, and predicting the well-rested Lakers would be determined to turn around a frustrating season was another miss. The ‘tired’ visiting Nuggets won with a terrific 8-man effort. Ty Lawson (21 PTS, 10 AST, 3 STL) had his best game in weeks, Danilo Gallinari scored 20 and Andre Iguodala (15 PTS, 7 AST, 6 REB) had a lot to do with Kobe (29 PTS, 7 AST, 5 REB) missing 15 shots. Dwight Howard (14 PTS, 26 REB, 4 BLK) was a beast despite a sore shoulder, but Denver’s second unit made the difference. With Kenneth Faried (6 PTS, 6 REB) not feeling well, JaVale McGee stepped up — 17 PTS, 6 REB, 3 STL, 2 BLK — and Andre Miller (12 PTS, 10 AST) got his double-double in less than 24 minutes.
Other January 6 Games
OKC @ TOR: The Raptors were missing 21 feet of players: big Aaron Gray (flu) joined injured Andrea Bargnani (elbow) and Jonas Valanciunas (hand) as 7-footers in street clothes. It’s amazing they lost by only 12, as DeMar DeRozan shot 4-for-16 and Ed Davis was nearly invisible in 34 minutes. Alan Anderson had a career-high 27 points off the bench, and Amir Johnson (19 PTS, 9 REB, 3 BLK) stayed out of foul trouble as the starting center. The Thunder spread the wealth, with five players in double figures led by Russell Westbrook (23 PTS, 7 AST, 4 REB, 3 STL) and Kevin Durant (22 PTS, 7 REB, 7 AST) who seemed to have another gear in reserve.
WAS @ MIA: The Heat went about their business in an easy win, scoring the final 21 points of the game. LeBron James was relatively quiet (24 PTS, 7 AST) but considering he now has a sore ankle to go with the knee and shoulder, he can be forgiven. Chris Bosh flexed his muscles (17 PTS, 9 REB, 4 BLK) as Miami was far more aggressive on the boards. Even Ray Allen (20 PTS, 3-of-4 from deep) grabbed six rebounds. The worst revolving door in fantasy basketball might be PG for the Wizards. John Wall has yet to play, A.J. Price got hurt, they cut Shaun Livingston, and just when Garrett Temple seemed to seize the opportunity, he had an 0-7 night.