NBA round-up | OKC destroy Lonzo-less Lakers; GSW see off resolute Bulls

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NBA round-up | OKC destroy Lonzo-less Lakers; GSW see off resolute Bulls

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SportsCafe Desk

01/18/2018

Riding on trademark performances from Carmelo Anthony and Steven Adams, Oklahoma City Thunder secured a commanding 114-90 win over the Los Angeles Lakers at home. In another game, Golden State Warriors had their work cut out in the latter stages as they beat Chicago Bulls 119 - 112.

Los Angeles Lakers 90 - 114 Oklahoma City Thunder

In the absence of Lonzo Ball, the Lakers handed the ball-handling responsibilities to Tyler Ennis for the game away at the Thunder. While the Thunder dominated proceedings early on with Carmelo Anthony and Steven Adams, the Lakers ensured that they stayed in touching distance shooting an impressive 60% from the field in the first quarter. However, a late burst by the hosts meant that the lead had been extended to eight points (33-25) going into the first break. Following the interval, Kyle Kuzma came into his own with a three and an assist before be tipped in an offensive rebound to hand the Lakers their first lead on the night. With under a minute to go, the Lakers found themselves level on 54 with the Thunder but yet another late flurry of points meant the latter held a six-point lead as the teams headed into the locker rooms. 

After the break, the Lakers kept up with the Thunder reaching a score of 61-66, but that was when everything started going wrong for the visitors. Carmelo led the hosts on a 9-0 run to extend the lead to double digits and while the Lakers did keep finding buckets on regular intervals, their poor post presence was costing them as Adams was grabbing literally anything that came back off the rim. It resulted in the Thunder going into the final quarter with a 21 point lead with the scoreboard reading 93-72. With a comfortable lead and a possible win in the bag, Thunder decided to give their squad players an extended run in and the Lakers followed suit soon and saw out the game that ended 114-90 in the hosts’ favour. The Lakers are now 0-8 when Lonzo hasn’t played for them this season and now sit at 13th on the table while the Thunder’s three-game win streak has seen them cement the fifth place on the table.

Golden State Warriors 119 - 112 Chicago Bulls

There was no question as to who the favorite was, going into the GSW-Bulls game, with the former coming off a three-game winning streak that included a win over Eastern conference Champions Cavaliers. With Draymond Green ruled out for the game, Jordan Bell was handed a start alongside Kevin Durant. However, his game did not last long as after going up for a block, he landed awkwardly on his left ankle that saw his night coming to a premature end. The Warriors started proceedings with a Klay Thompson three before Steph Curry joined the action with one of his own to take his team into double digits. With a minute and a half remaining on the clock, the Warriors held a ten point lead but not only did the hosts fightback to level the score, the Bulls also ensured Curry’s lax play took them into the second quarter with a two-point lead. After the break, the Bulls extended the lead to six points but, it didn’t last long as Curry came to life and made sure that the teams headed into the locker room level on 66 points apiece. 

After the break, both Durant and Klay picked up the pace and with Curry already hot in the game, the Warriors went on a 19-0 run to virtually take the game away from the Bulls with over a quarter left in the match. With a comfortable lead in the bag, Steve Kerr decided to let the squad players get some game time, leaving just Klay on the court. Slowly and steadily, riding on Nikola Mirotic’s points, the Bulls made a comeback into the game reducing the deficit to just nine points (108-99) with just under six minutes to go. After two back to back Warriors turnovers, the lead stood at just five points. However, the Warriors used their experience to just close out the game and secure another win on the road to take their overall record to 37-9 for the season. The Bulls, however, with a 17-28 season are looking like they will miss the playoffs again this year. 

Other results :

Hornets 133 - 109 Wizards

Nets 95 - 100 Spurs 

Raptors 96 - 90 Pistons

Hawks 94 - 93 Pelicans 

Bucks 101 - 106 Heat

Grizzlies 105 - 99 Knicks

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