Durant's sensational performance sends Nets to 3-2 lead
Kevin Durant had 49 points, 17 rebounds and 10 assists in one of the best performances in postseason history, sending the Brooklyn Nets back into the lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals with a 114-108 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 5.
Harden, Griffin help Nets hold off Pistons 113-111
Brooklyn Nets forward Blake Griffin (2) is defended by Detroit Pistons forward Sekou Doumbouya during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 26, 2021, in Detroit. Griffin scored 17 points and was part of a first-half dustup that resulted in Isaiah Stewart's ejection, and the Brooklyn Nets outlasted the Pistons 113-111 on Friday night. AdBy the end of the game, however, Detroit coach Dwane Casey didn't want to talk about Griffin at all. Brooklyn was still without Kevin Durant (left hamstring strain) and Kyrie Irving (personal reasons), but the Nets had enough to hold off the last-place Pistons. The Pistons went 34 for 47 on free throws.
Mavs end Nets' 8-game run as Porzingis returns, Irving sits
Dallas Mavericks center Kristaps Porzingis (6) shoots against Brooklyn Nets forward Jeff Green (8) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)NEW YORK – Luka Doncic scored 27 points, Kristaps Porzingis added 18 in his return from injury and the Dallas Mavericks snapped the Brooklyn Nets' eight-game winning streak with a 115-98 victory Saturday night. James Harden had 29 points for the Nets, but only four after halftime while playing as Brooklyn's solo superstar. Kevin Durant missed his seventh straight game with a left hamstring strain and Kyrie Irving rested his surgically repaired right shoulder. Dallas put it away with 12 straight points early in the fourth, making it 106-84 and soon after Harden was removed for good.
Nets hold on to edge Clippers, win season-best 6th in a row
Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden, left, shoots as Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)LOS ANGELES – James Harden scored 37 points and the Brooklyn Nets held off a furious fourth-quarter rally to edge the Los Angeles Clippers 112-108 on Sunday night for their season-best sixth victory in a row. The Nets wrapped up a 5-0 trip, beating Golden State, Sacramento, Phoenix, and both Los Angeles teams to complete their longest undefeated single trip in franchise history. “Winning six in a row, all it does is keep the world silent for a bit,” Kyrie Irving said. Irving scored 12 points — matching his total from the first half — to send the Nets into the fourth leading 89-79.
Harden scores 38, Nets rally from 24 down, stun Suns 128-124
Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden dishes around Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton, right, during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)PHOENIX – James Harden scored 38 points, Joe Harris added 22 and the Brooklyn Nets overcame a 24-point deficit to stun the Phoenix Suns 128-124 on Tuesday night. The Nets were playing without two of their three main stars, but Harden was more than up for the challenge against the Suns. Chris Paul scored 29 points, including 17 in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough for the Suns. The 28-year-old Johnson spent the first half of last season with the Suns before being released in February.
Westbrook, Beal hit late 3s, Wizards stun Nets 149-146
(AP Photo/Nick Wass)WASHINGTON – Wizards coach Scott Brooks envisioned something like this when Washington acquired Russell Westbrook from Houston for John Wall and a draft pick. Bradley Beal and Westbrook hit 3-pointers in a wild 3.8-second sequence in the final seconds to help the Wizards stun Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets 149-146 on Sunday night. Westbrook had 41 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, and NBA scoring leader Beal had 37 points. In the fourth quarter, Beal had 22 points and Westbrook had 15. “Russell willed this game,” Brooks said about Westbrook, who has only played in 10 of 16 games due to a quad injury.
Durant, Irving help Nets hold off Adebayo, Heat 128-124
Miami Heat's Gabe Vincent (2) defends against Brooklyn Nets' Kevin Durant (7) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021, in New York. Kevin Durant scored 31 points, Kyrie Irving took over late and had 28 and the Nets overcame Adebayo's career-high 41 points to beat the Miami Heat 128-124 on Saturday night. Irving helped pull the Nets through with 12 points in the final 5:48 after the Heat had erased nearly all of an 18-point deficit. Adebayo beat the buzzer with a jumper, than Miami opened the fourth with a 13-0 run to get within 96-95. Irving, Harden and Durant quickly combined for eight straight points but Adebayo kept coming, and the Nets needed a couple of clutch baskets from Irving and late free throws to pull it out.
Nets, without Irving and Durant, beat NBA-leading 76ers
(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)NEW YORK – The Brooklyn Nets couldn't put Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant into those throwback blue tie-dye jerseys from 30 years ago. Joe Harris scored a season-high 28 points and the Nets shook off the absence of their two superstars to beat the Philadelphia 76ers 122-109 on Thursday night. The Nets already knew they’d be without Durant for a second consecutive game because of the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Nash said he didn't think the strong performance without them sent a message to the rest of his players. Nets; Brooklyn was also without G Tyler Johnson because of the health and safety protocols.
Welcome back: Lakers, LeBron headed to the conference finals
James scored 29 points and the Lakers wrapped up their first trip to the Western Conference finals since 2010 by topping the Houston Rockets 119-96 on Saturday night in Game 5 at Walt Disney World. Kyle Kuzma scored 17 points, Markieff Morris had 16, Danny Green added 14 and Anthony Davis finished with 13 for the top-seeded Lakers. James is going to the conference finals for the 11th time overall — six with Cleveland, four with Miami and now with the Lakers. The Lakers scored the next 15 points, and the lead was 95-69 going into the final quarter. Lakers: Los Angeles went seven years without a conference-final appearance from 1991 through 1998, the team's longest drought before this 10-year run.
Schroder scores 30; Thunder top Rockets to even series
Eric Gordon scored 23 points and Danuel House added 21 for the Rockets, who won the first two games of the series. The Thunder shot 47.8% and the Rockets 47.7% before the break. The Rockets led 93-80 before Schroder made a 3-pointer and Houston's Austin Rivers was called for a foul away from the shot. Schroder hot a deep 3-pointer at the buzzer, and the Oklahoma City climbed within 93-92 at the end of the third. Thunder: Shot 61% in the first quarter.
Harden's 37 points lead Rockets past Thunder in Game 1
Houston All-Star Russell Westbrook, who played his previous 11 years with the Thunder, was out with a quad injury. Jeff Green scored 22 points and Eric Gordon added 21 for Houston, which isn't sure how long it will be without Westbrook. Chris Paul, who joined the Oklahoma City in the trade that sent Westbrook to Houston, finished with 20 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists. Gordon scored 16 points and Harden had 15 in the first half to help the Rockets take a 68-52 lead. Oklahoma City cut its deficit to 10 at one point in the third quarter, but the Rockets pulled away and led 104-83 heading into the fourth.
Turner helps Indiana hold off Harden rally to beat Rockets
That's when Harden got Houston going, cutting it to 106-104 on with a driving basket with 27 seconds to go. But after Victor Olidipo missed a 3-pointer, Turner tipped out the rebound to Justin Holliday with six seconds left. ... Malcolm Brogdon, who had 12 points in Monday's loss to Miami, sat out against Houston with a sore neck. Rockets: Russell Westbrook was diagnosed with a strained quadriceps muscle in his right leg and will miss Friday's regular-season finale. Rockets: Play Philadelphia on Friday.
Spurs beat Rockets to keep playoff hopes alive, need help from other teams
San Antonio has won three straight and five out of seven since arriving in the Florida bubble. The Spurs will need help to be one of the teams playing this weekend for the final spot in the Western Conference, but made sure they couldn't be eliminated Tuesday with their win. San Antonio built a 19-point lead in the first half. San Antonio moves into 9th place in the West, but the position is tenuous. The Spurs need for the Memphis Grizzlies to lose both their games and Phoenix or Portland to lose one of their remaining games to get into the short play-in series.