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The Rundown w/T-Money

Rundown v02.24.20 – Coby White Goes Off Again, Celtics-Lakers, and These Aren’t Your Mama’s Candy Ass, Barney Jersey Raptors

That moment when Domantas Sabonis realizes you're about to get JurassKicked by ravenous Raptors, C.J. McCollum drops 41 and Carmelo Anthony has 32 in a Blazers win, and Jayson Tatum scores a career high 41 in a loss to L.A.

The Toronto Raptors showed the Indiana Pacers and the rest of the NBA that they’re in this title defense for the long haul. Portland is scratching and clawing their way back into consideration in the West, and if the Boston-Los Angeles game was a peek into the future (say … June?), then we’re in for one hell of a ride, folks.


Washington Wizards  117
Chicago Bulls  126

The fact that Chicago has played three more games than Washington and had three more losses is about the only difference between these two 20 win teams trying to scrap their way into playoff consideration in the weaker Eastern Conference. But the Bulls have looked stronger the past couple night, especially Coby White, who scored 33 points for the second straight game, this one a win. Zach LaVine added 33 points as he and White countered Bradley Beal’s 53 point effort with a combined 65 points. Thaddeus Young had another strong game with 23 points and six rebounds.

WIZARDS (20-35) 9th in the EastBULLS (20-38) 10th in the East
Bradley Beal
53 points – five rebounds – four assists – two steals – one block
Coby White
33 points – six rebounds – two assists – two steals – one block
Davis Bertans
22 points – four rebounds – one assist – one steal
Zach LaVine
32 points – four rebounds – three assists – three steals – one block
Rui Hachimura
10 points – eight rebounds – four assists – one steal
Thaddeus Young
23 points – six rebounds – two assists – three steals

Milwaukee at Washington – Tonight
Oklahoma City at Chicago – Tuesday


San Antonio Spurs  103
Oklahoma City Thunder  131

The Oklahoma City Thunder crept another half game closer to the upper echelon of the Western Conference last night with a resounding win over the San Antonio Spurs in Oklahoma City. Players 1-8 – including all starters and the first three off the bench – scored in double digits for the Thunder, led by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Steven Adams in the 20s. Luguentz Dort went six for six on the night, Dennis Schroder added 13, it was 12 apiece for both Chris Paul and Danilo Gallinari, while Abdel Nader and Nerlens Noel chipped in 10 each from the bench. Rudy Gay – who you forget plays for San Antonio unless you live there or are president of the Rudy Gay Fan Club – ‘led’ San Antonio with 14 points. No wonder head coach Gregg Popovich had to leave the presser and go talk to his boss.

SPURS (24-32) 11th in the WestTHUNDER (35-22) 6th in the West
Rudy Gay
14 points – six rebounds – two assists – one steal
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
22 points – 13 rebounds – four assists
Marco Belinelli
13 points – two rebounds – one assist
Steven Adams
21 points – 14 rebounds – one steal
DeMar DeRozan
11 points – five rebounds – three assists
Luguentz Dort
15 points – two rebounds – two assists – three steals

Oklahoma City at Chicago – Tuesday
Dallas at San Antonio – Wednesday


New Orleans Pelicans  115
Golden State Warriors  101

After a sluggish first half, the New Orleans Pelicans took flight in the second half, scoring 69 points to Golden State’s 45 to soar past the host Warriors and a 14 point win, their 25th of the season. Zion Williamson has not only been leading New Orleans in scoring, but inspiring a ‘block’ party, as Nicolo Melli, J.J. Redick, Jrue Holiday, and Derrick Favors got in on the shot blocking with Williamson. Golden State got 22 points from Damion Lee as Andrew Wiggins only mustered eight points. Newcomer Dragan Bender finished with six points, five rebounds. It was the Pelicans’ fifth win in six games, and Williamson’s eight consecutive game with 20+ points. 

PELICANS (25-32) 10th in the WestWARRIORS (12-45) 15th in the West
Zion Williamson
28 points – seven rebounds – two assists – one block
Damion Lee
22 points – four rebounds – four assists – one steal – one block
Jrue Holiday
23 points – seven rebounds – 15 assists – one block
Jordan Poole
19 points – four rebounds – five assists
Nicolo Melli
20 points – five rebounds – one assist – one block
Juan Toscano-Anderson
16 points – eight rebounds – three assists – one steal – two blocks

New Orleans at Los Angeles – Tuesday
Sacramento at Golden State – Tuesday


Detroit Pistons  104
Portland Trailblazers  107

The Blazers are knocking on the door of playoff consideration, sitting three games behind the Memphis Grizzlies in the Western Conference after last night’s win over the Detroit Pistons. Make no mistake about it, these Pistons are nowhere near the ‘Bad Boys’ Pistons that the Blazers faced in the 1990 NBA Finals. Neither of these teams in 2020 can hold a candle to those two teams from 1989-90. But the Blazers should have beaten the brakes off this Detroit squad, remnants of what they started the season with after two bought out their contracts and bolted to L.A. teams, and their staple – Andre Drummond – was traded away unceremoniously. C.J. McCollum had to score 41 and Carmelo Anthony (who Detroit should have drafted instead of Darko Milicic – who has a ring, by the way) popped for 32 points to carry Portland to the win. Christian Wood continues to shine since Drummond was traded.

PISTONS (19-40) 12th in the EastTRAILBLAZERS (26-32) 9th in the West
Christian Wood
26 points – nine rebounds – one assist – two blocks
C.J. McCollum
41 points – nine rebounds – 12 assists – one steal
Derrick Rose
15 points – two rebounds – three assists
Carmelo Anthony
32 points – four rebounds – one assist
Brandon Knight
15 points – two rebounds – three assists
Hassan Whiteside
16 points – 17 rebounds – three assists – four blocks

Detroit at Denver – Tuesday
Boston at Portland – Tuesday


Boston Celtics  112
Los Angeles Lakers  114

If this is going to be a glimpse of the NBA Finals, ladies and gentlemen, we’re in for a treat and possibly a seven game series. The Los Angeles Lakers even the season series at one game apiece last night by overcoming a career night from Jayson Tatum and salting away the Boston Celtics with a two point victory. In a game that was a statistical dead heat, all the Lakers had to do was score one more bucket than the Celtics and that’s what it came down to last night in front of a national TV audience. And the ball was in the hands of someone that – 10 years ago – would have been called a choke artist. LeBron James hit the game winner, as he and Anthony Davis combined for 61 points to equal Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Kyle Kuzma and Daniel Thies each scored 16, so it was even at 77 points for each team’s top three. That’s how close this game was and how exciting it will be if L.A. and Boston meet in the Finals this June.

CELTICS (39-17) 3rd in the EastLAKERS (43-12) 1st in the West
Jayson Tatum
41 points – five rebounds – two assists – one steal – two blocks
Anthony Davis
32 points – 13 rebounds – three assists – two blocks
Jaylen Brown
20 points – six rebounds – two assists – three steals – one block
LeBron James
29 points – eight rebounds – nine assists
Daniel Thies
16 points – nine rebounds (fouled out)
Kyle Kuzma
16 points – four rebounds – one block

Boston at Portland – Tuesday
New Orleans at Los Angeles – Tuesday


Minnesota Timberwolves  116
Denver Nuggets  128

The Minnesota Timberwolves won’t be going to the NBA Playoffs this year … unless they can find a really good deal on StubHub. But last night they had front row seats to their own beatdown in the first half, in which the Denver Nuggets dropped 73 points to provide enough of an advantage to treat the Timberwolves to a 14 point loss. It was the Nuggets’ 39th win of the season, and the Timberwolves’ 39th loss. In Malik Beasley’s first game back in Denver since the trade to Minnesota, he scored 17 points and had eight rebounds for the hapless Timberwolves. Meanwhile, Denver had six Nuggets score in double digits, led by Paul Millsap’s season high 25 points. Hopefully the Nuggets will comp Beasley a game ticket during the playoffs.

TIMBERWOLVES (16-39) 14th in the WestNUGGETS (39-18) 2nd in the West
Kelan Martin
21 points – four rebounds – one block
Paul Millsap
25 points – seven rebounds – one steal – two blocks
Malik Beasley
17 points – eight rebounds – one assist – one steal – one block
Nikola Jokic
24 points – seven rebounds – six assists – two steals – two blocks
Jordan McLaughlin
15 points – four rebounds – 10 assists – one steal
Jamal Murray
19 points – one rebound – six assists – one steal

Minnesota at Dallas – Tonight
Detroit at Denver – Tuesday


Indiana Pacers  81
Toronto Raptors  127

The Indiana Pacers beat the Toronto Raptors in overtime, 120-115, back on December 23rd. Consider that an early Christmas present and the only gift the Raptors gave Indiana, as they’ve owned the Pacers the three games they’ve played them since Christmas, and won the season series in convincing fashion with a 46 point mauling last night with carnage that any true Jurassic Park fan would applaud. These aren’t your mama’s Raptors, with the candy ass Barney on the front of the jersey. These are the reigning NBA champions and they don’t plan on going down without a fight. Pascal Siakam led all scorers with 21 points, which doesn’t sound that impressive, but there were six Raptors scoring in double digits, including Matt Thomas – who sounds like a fan they pulled out of the stands and won the halftime, half court shot. All kidding aside, Thomas is a rookie from Iowa State who has been playing well with 905 Raptors in the G League. Kyle Lowry also had a monster night. And Indiana, c’mon, the Holiday Brothers thing was cute in the beginning of the season, but the Pacers need some wins. That means more than nine points from Malcolm Brogdon, and eight from Doug McDermott. Myles Turner and T.J. Warren are better than their seven apiece, and five from Jeremy Lamb – seriously? We need to get Victor Oladipo’s back healthy – this is the NBA, not AAU ball, boys.

PACERS (33-24) 6th in the EastRAPTORS (42-15) 2nd in the East
Domantas Sabonis
14 points – 11 rebounds – five assists – one steal
Pascal Siakam
21 points – two rebounds – three assists – one block
Aaron Holiday
14 points – four rebounds – six assists – one steal
Matt Thomas
17 points – one rebound – one assist
Justin Holiday
12 points – one rebound – three assists
Kyle Lowry
16 points – seven rebounds – 11 assists – five steals – one block

Charlotte at Indiana – Tuesday
Milwaukee at Toronto – Tuesday


(All Times Eastern)

7 p.m.
Miami Heat
Cleveland Cavaliers
Fox Sports Ohio
7 p.m.
Atlanta Hawks
Philadelphia 76ers
7 p.m.
Milwaukee Bucks
Washington Wizards
NBC Sports Washington
7:30 p.m.
Orlando Magic
Brooklyn Nets
8 p.m.
New York Knicks
Houston Rockets
AT&T SportsNet Southwest
8:30 p.m.
Minnesota Timberwolves
Dallas Mavericks
Fox Sports Southwest
9 p.m.
Phoenix Suns
Utah Jazz
AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain
10:30 p.m.
Memphis Grizzlies
Los Angeles Clippers


Tracy Graven is a Senior NBA Analyst for
He has written the NBA, and done NBA radio, for the last two decades for HoopsWorld, Swish Magazine, and HoopsHype, the Coach Scott Fields Show and, and is also tackling the NFL, NCAA, and will be pinch-hitting on some Major League Baseball coverage for BackSportsPage.
He’s spent 20 years in locker rooms in 

  • Orlando
  • Boise (G League) 
  • San Antonio
  • Phoenix
  • Denver
  • Oklahoma City
  • Atlanta 

A corporate trainer by day, he currently resides in SEC Country near Knoxville, Tennessee.
Reach him on Twitter at @RealTMoneyMedia

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