Highlighted by a buzzer-beater and a battle for position in the Eastern Conference, Tuesday night's slate in the NBA bubble featured a ton of drama in a six-game schedule.
Early in the afternoon, Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker faked, spun and drilled a jumper to crush the Los Angeles Clippers. Later on, the Miami Heat closed the gap on the Boston Celtics in the race for the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference.
If you missed any of the action or simply want to relive the day, B/R has you covered with top performers and updated standings as the 2020 NBA playoffs draw nearer.
Tuesday Scores and Highlights
Brooklyn Nets 119, Milwaukee Bucks 116
Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (BRK): 26 PTS, 3 REB
Garrett Temple (BKN): 19 PTS, 5 REB, 4 AST
Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL): 16 PTS, 6 REB, 4 AST
One night after the Los Angeles Lakers clinched the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, the Bucks missed their chance to accomplish the same in the East.
And it was historically bad.
According to ESPN's David Purdum, the Nets—playing without Kyrie Irving, Spencer Dinwiddie, Caris LeVert, Joe Harris, DeAndre Jordan, Taurean Prince and Jarrett Allen, as well as Kevin Durant—entered as 19-point underdogs. Based on the spread, it's the largest upset in the NBA since a 1993 game between the Dallas Mavericks and Seattle SuperSonics.
Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot scored a career-best 26 points for the Nets, who basically locked up a spot in the postseason thanks to the stunning victory.
Dallas Mavericks 114, Sacramento Kings 110 (OT)
Luka Doncic (DAL): 34 PTS, 20 REB, 12 AST
Kristaps Porzingis (DAL): 22 PTS, 7 REB, 2 AST
De'Aaron Fox (SAC): 28 PTS, 9 AST
Are we completely sure Luka Doncic didn't play a video game and somehow stream it through our televisions?
Doncic obliterated the box score in this overtime triumph with 34 points, 20 rebounds and 12 assists. Although Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic achieved a comparable line in February, it's only the fifth 30-20-10 triple-double of the last 46 years.
Yeah, that's pretty good.
With five seeding games left, the Mavs are now within two games of the Oklahoma City Thunder for the West's No. 6 spot.
Phoenix Suns 117, Los Angeles Clippers 115
Devin Booker (PHX): 35 PTS, 8 AST, 4 REB
Kawhi Leonard (LAC): 27 PTS, 7 REB, 3 AST
Paul George (LAC): 23 PTS, 6 REB, 5 AST
Booker provided the highlight of the night with a buzzer-beating jumper to stun the Clippers.
Booker's clutch shot helped the Suns improve to 3-0 in the bubble and get within striking distance of the Memphis Grizzlies. The Grizz are 0-3 in Florida and lost Jaren Jackson Jr. to a season-ending meniscus injury, so Phoenix has some hope.
Yes, the battle for the West's final postseason spot is clogged. Five straight clashes with playoff-bound teams is a challenging end to these seeding games for the Suns.
But at the very least, Booker provided a memorable shot and put a little extra pressure on the Clippers. They're now a single game ahead of the Denver Nuggets for the No. 2 seed in the West.
Indiana Pacers 120, Orlando Magic 109
T.J. Warren (IND): 32 PTS, 3 AST
Nikola Vucevic (ORL): 24 PTS, 10 REB
Myles Turner (IND): 21 PTS, 6 REB
"MVP" is apparently a synonym for T.J. Warren. Jokes aside, the veteran is absolutely thriving in the bubble.
In three games—all Indiana wins—he's racked up 53, 34 and 32 points. Against the Magic, he shot 13-of-17 overall with a 4-of-5 mark from three-point range.
"I'm just really in rhythm," Warren said, according to the Associated Press. "Really picking my spots and really just staying efficient. It was an all-around team effort and I'm just doing my part, doing what I'm capable of doing."
The Pacers jumped out to a 43-22 advantage in the first quarter. After that hot start, Indiana's lead stayed in double digits until the final minute of regulation.
Miami Heat 112, Boston Celtics 106
Bam Adebayo (MIA): 21 PTS, 12 REB
Kelly Olynyk (MIA): 15 PTS, 8 AST, 6 REB
Jayson Tatum (BOS): 23 PTS, 7 REB
Since both Miami and Boston have secured a playoff berth, the top priority is staying healthy. For a moment, it seemed the Heat may have a significant injury.
Late in the fourth quarter, Goran Dragic limped to the locker room. Hopefully, though, the initial report is true. Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press said Dragic told the team he didn't believe there's much cause for concern and X-rays were "clean."
As for the result, Miami's win trimmed Boston's hold on the No. 3 seed to just 1.5 games. Bam Adebayo, Duncan Robinson and Dragic all netted 20-plus points in the victory.
Portland Trail Blazers 110, Houston Rockets 102
James Harden (HOU): 23 PTS, 9 AST, 6 REB
Damian Lillard (POR): 21 PTS, 9 REB, 8 AST
Jusuf Nurkic (POR): 18 PTS, 19 REB, 3 AST
Houston is no stranger to tight finishes in the bubble. But after clipping both Dallas and Milwaukee to begin their time in Florida, the Rockets fell short in the final quarter.
As the clock ticked below one minute remaining, Carmelo Anthony iced the victory with a three-pointer.
Melo finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds, posting his fifth double-double of the season. Damian Lillard scored a team-high 21 points, while CJ McCollum added 20. Jusuf Nurkic chipped in 18 points and ripped down an impressive 19 rebounds.
Portland inched ever closer to Memphis, trailing the Grizzlies by only 1.5 games. The Rockets dropped into a tie with the Utah Jazz and are just a half-game ahead of OKC and the No. 6 seed.
1. Milwaukee (54-14)
2. Toronto (48-18)
3. Boston (44-23)
4. Miami (43-25)
5. Indiana (42-26)
6. Philadelphia (40-27)
7. Brooklyn (32-35)
8. Orlando (32-36)
9. Washington (24-43)
1. Los Angeles Lakers (51-15)
2. Los Angeles Clippers (45-22)
3. Denver (44-23)
4. Houston (42-25)
5. Utah (42-25)
6. Oklahoma City (41-25)
7. Dallas (41-29)
8. Memphis (32-36)
9. Portland (31-38)
10. San Antonio (29-37)
11. New Orleans (29-38)
12. Phoenix (29-39)
13. Sacramento (28-39)