With 11 games on Saturday's slate, there is plenty of NBA action to discuss, including yet another monster triple-double from Luka Doncic and another 40-point explosion from Trae Young. Unfortunately, there are also lots of injuries updates to pass along.
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Trae Young led the Hawks to a surprising victory over the Pacers on Saturday night, pouring in 40 points in an efficient fashion. Young was 12-of-23 from the floor and 12-of-14 from the free-throw stripe, to go along with four rebounds, eight assists, two steals and five 3-pointers in 37 minutes. It was Young's fifth 40-burger this season, which is second to only James Harden.
Jae Crowder (ankle soreness) was initially questionable for this contest and had to match up against Kawhi Leonard for most of the evening. However, he helped guide the Grizzlies to victory over the Clippers, as he shockingly exploded for arguably the best all-around stat line of his career. Crowder finished 27 points, eight rebounds, seven assists, three steals, three blocks, one turnover and six 3-pointers in 31 minutes.
Terry Rozier powered the Hornets to a remarkable comeback victory over the Mavs on Saturday, knocking down a clutch 3-pointer to send the game to overtime and nailing the go-ahead 3-pointer in OT. He finished with 29 points (10-of-15 FGs), five 3-pointers, six rebounds and eight assists and just one turnover. Scary Terry, who had 30/6/3 on Thursday, is on a tear in 2020. Not to be outdone, Devonte Graham racked up 27 points and 13 assists. Remarkably, Graham has now handed out double-digit dimes in five of the Hornets' last six games.
Jamal Murray didn't score a single point in the first quarter on Saturday but still managed to finish with 39 points with one rebound, four assists, two steals, one block and three 3-pointers. He did so quite efficiently, shooting 13-of-19 from the floor and was a perfect 10-of-10 from the charity stripe.
Luka Doncic messed around and got yet another triple-double on Saturday night, scoring 39 points, ripping down 12 rebounds, and dishing out ten dimes in 43 minutes in an overtime loss to the Hornets. We are not even halfway through the season, and Luka has already passed Jason Kidd for most trip-dubs by a Maverick in one season. His ten in 2019-20 are the most in the NBA. Also, consider this: Doncic now has eight 30-point triple-doubles before his 21st birthday. That's five more than every other under-21 player in NBA history combined.
Ish Smith came out of nowhere to score a career-high 32 points with three rebounds, eight assists, three steals and one three-pointer in 34 minutes. Ish was 15-of-24 from the field. With Bradley Beal (lower right leg soreness) sidelined, Smith stepped in and stepped up.
Andre Drummond only logged 29 minutes before fouling out, but still managed to rack up 14 points (7-of-14 FGs), 18 rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocked shots. It's also worth noting that, after the game, he addressed rumors that of the Pistons potentially trading him and stated that he wants to finish his career in Detroit. "I was never brought up to be a quitter. If I start somewhere, I try to finish there, try to complete the mission, which is to win a championship here," Drummond said. "It will never be me that wants to go anywhere ... I love being here. I would love to play here the rest of my career."
Alec Burks was a beast off the bench on Saturday, finishing with 27 points (5-of-13 FGs), seven rebounds, five assists, one steal and three 3-pointers in 32 minutes. And not only did Burks get to the free-throw line 14 times, but he also knocked down all 14 freebies.
Lonzo Ball stayed hot on Saturday night, totaling 24 points (9-of-19 FGs), six rebounds, ten assists (vs. just two turnovers), two steals, a block and four 3-pointers in a win over the Kings. It was his third straight game with at least 23 points, and he's averaging 24.7 points, 6.0 rebounds, 8.3 assists, 2.0 steals, 4.3 3-pointers and 2.0 turnovers over this three-game tear.
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On the Radar:
Jaren Jackson Jr. shot 9-of-10 from the field for 24 points with six rebounds, four blocks and three 3-pointers in 34 minutes in the Grizzlies shocking victory over the Clippers. Ja Morant had 22 points, four rebounds, nine assists, one steal and one 3-pointer in 30 minutes. Dillon Brooks tallied 22 points, three rebounds, three assists and six 3-pointers in 28 minutes.
Kawhi Leonard scored 24 points in the loss to Memphis but needed 24 shots to do so (8-of-24 FGs). He added eight rebounds, three assists, two steals, five turnovers and two 3-pointers in 35 minutes. Doc Rivers refused to rule out Kawhi from Sunday's afternoon matchup with the Knicks, but Leonard playing in both ends of a back-to-back would be a first. Montrezl Harrell was the only Clipper that performed well, shooting 11-of-16 from the field for 28 points with nine rebounds, three assists and two turnovers in 26 minutes.
The Raptors backcourt of Fred VanVleet and Kyle Lowry torched the Nets on Saturday. FVV exploded for 29 points, four rebounds, 11 assists and five 3-pointers in 36 minutes. Lowry had 26 points, four rebounds, five assists, two steals, one block, one turnover and five 3-pointers in 43 minutes. Serge Ibaka recorded his fifth straight double-double (21 points and 12 rebounds in 28 minutes).With Pascal Siakam (groin strain) and Marc Gasol (hamstring) sidelined for the foreseeable future, these three will continue to shoulder the offense and post impressive numbers.
Caris LeVert (right thumb surgery) returned to NBA action on Saturday after missing 24 straight games. He shot 5-of-7 from the field for 13 points with one assist and two 3-pointers in 16 minutes. With Kyrie Irving (shoulder) out of the mix, LeVert should see plenty of scoring opportunities once he works his way into game shape. Spencer Dinwiddie had 23 points, three rebounds, seven assists, one block and two 3-pointers in 31 minutes, but the Nets dropped their fifth straight game.
Kevin Huerter remained hot on Saturday, racking up 26 points (10-of-18 FGs, 2-of-2 FTs) with six rebounds, five assists, two steals and four 3-pointers on a season-high 41 minutes. Over the Hawks last three games, Huerter is averaging 20.7 points, 6.3 boards, 4.7 dimes, 3.0 treys and 1.7 steals in 37.4 minutes. He should be universally owned.
Domantas Sabonis tallied 25 points, 11 boards, four board while converting 11 of his 15 FG attempts Saturday night. Sabonis has been solidly consistent all year long and ranks inside the top-50 in nine-category fantasy formats in 2019-20.
After beating up on the Cavs Saturday night, the surging Thunder have now won five in a row and nine of the last ten. OKC used a well-balanced effort in Cleveland, with six different players scoring in double figures. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 20 points (9-of-14 FGs, 2-of-2 FTs), seven rebounds and two steals. Chris Paul had seven points (3-of-9 FGs), four rebounds and ten assists in 30 minutes. Steven Adams once again dominated the paint, tallying ten points, 16 rebounds, four assists, one steal and one blocked shot in 30 minutes. After stumbling out of the gates this season, he's back inside the top-100 overall in nine-cat formats.