Despite having just three games on the schedule for Tuesday night, Commissioner David Stern was proudly beaming as some of the league's most storied franchises took to the hardwood.
The Boston Celtics looked to continue their winning ways in the aftermath of a rash of injuries that decimated coach Doc Rivers' rotation.
The Denver Nuggets, a trendy sleeper pick before the season started, figured to be in line for their sixth straight win with a matchup against the stumbling Sacramento Kings (3-7 in their previous 10). But the Seacramento SuperKings had hopes of playing spoiler, pushing the Nuggets for all 48 minutes.
The marquee matchup of the night pitted the resurgent Los Angeles Lakers (7-3 in their previous 10) against an Oklahoma City Thunder team eyeing the Western Conference's top spot—ever the more a possibility thanks to the Grade 2 ankle sprain sidelining Spurs star Tony Parker. The Thunder flaunted their youthful athleticism, but the proud Lakers pushed them for everything they had.
Offense trumped defense, and less was certainly more, as these six teams packed a horde of excitement (and 670 combined points) into a compact 148 minutes of action Tuesday night.