I joked about the 2012-13 Celtics being back after the Hawks led by 19 points in the first half. However, the Celtics went on a 33-9 blitz in the third quarter in a furious second half by the 2008 NBA Champions. Paul Pierce went for 26 points and Rajon Rondo had another triple-double (14 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists). Boston has now won two straight after that four-game losing streak.
Orlando was leading in the fourth quarter but Carmelo Anthony just overwhelmed the Magic in the fourth quarter. Carmelo would have 16 of his 40 points in the final stanza as the Knicks won their second in a row and get into a virtual tie for first place in the East with the Miami Heat.
After their disappointment against the Celtics, the Pacers came back strong and dumped the Bucks at home. Roy Hibbert came alive and had an excellent game to the tune of 20 points, 15 rebounds, and five blocks.
The Nets’ much-maligned offense pulverized the Kings early; Brooklyn scored 65 points in the first half. They had six players in double figures and were led by Brook Lopez with 18 points. It was also nice to see their European rookie, Mirza Teletovic, score 14 points.
James Harden struggled early but had a furious fourth quarter. He helped the Rockets to the win after he scored 16 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter. To top that off, Harden had seven steals. Houston has now won four straight games and eight of their last ten games.
LaMarcus Aldridge made a short jumper with 37 seconds left and the Blazers beat the Wolves at Minnesota, who were without Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio. Wesley Matthews (remember him?) and Nicolas Batum had 26 points each for the Blazers, who are now 18-15.
Eric Gordon scored on a three-point play with 4.7 seconds left and spoiled Dirk Nowitzki’s first start with the Mavericks (Vince Carter would subsequently miss a game-tying three-pointer) in overtime. Greivis Vasquez continues his fantastic season by putting in 25 points, seven rebounds, and nine assists. Dallas has lost eight of their last nine games.
The Spurs smashed the Sixers at home and were led by Tony Parker’s 20 points. Philadelphia finished 2-6 in their road trip, which wasn’t, you know, exactly encouraging for them. The Sixers fell to 15-20.
The Nuggets used a 14-2 run that started in the second quarter that carried over to the third and a 9-2 run in the third to get away from the Jazz. They topped it off by scoring 11 straight in the fourth to boost their lead to 23 points. Danilo Gallinari went for 26 points in the rout.
This was the way to get revenge. The Clippers just ran all over the Warriors as Lob City was in full effect, even without Jamal Crawford. Chris Paul shot a staggering 10-12 and scored 27 points while also dishing out nine assists.