USA TODAY Sports
The struggling Clippers couldn't beat the lowly Washington Wizards without their stars in the lineup -- their seventh loss in nine games -- while a 40-point fourth quarter fell just short for Minnesota, who had a chance to tie the game at the buzzer.
Blake Griffin and Chris Paul weren't in the lineup, but there's still reason for concern with the Clips, who have now lost seven of nine without Paul in the lineup. It's not like the guys who were healthy had a bad night, either: Jamal Crawford put up 28 off the bench and DeAndre Jordan ripped down 22 boards. But they went down early, scoring only 16 points in the first quarter, turned the ball over 20 times and Washington went off: Martell Webster had 21 points on only ten shots, drilling five of six threes.
Things seemed fine when Paul was first hurt, as the Clippers won three in a row and Paul returned to action, but since he reaggravated his knee bruise, a team whose bench strength was touted previously has looked hapless.
Trail Blazers 100, Timberwolves 98
The Timberwolves nearly stormed back after trailing by 19 in the fourth quarter, scoring on 20 of their first 22 possessions in the last period of play to come back to within one, but Dante Cunningham's attempted midrange jumper fell well short, and the injury-hampered Wolves lost their 12th game in 14 tries.
Portland had 28 turnovers -- the most by any team in a non-overtime game this year -- but LaMarcus Aldridge, Wesley Matthews, and Damian Lillard all hit 20 points, enough to stave off Minnesota's 40-point fourth quarter. Cunningham's 23 was a career-high, while Ricky Rubio had season highs in points and assists with 15 and 14.
The Pacers tied up the Bulls in the Central Division standings thanks to 29 points from David West. They've won three straight and between West and Paul George, are actually finding offensive solutions after winning exclusively with defense to start the year.
Orlando only had two healthy guards, and those two guards were E'Twaun Moore and Ish Smith. It showed, as they lost their tenth straight. The 76ers' first quarter was the only one by either team in which 20 points were scored.
Miami survived a scare from the Bobcats -- yes, the Bobcats -- after a 9-0 run put Charlotte on top with nine minutes left. The Heat came back with a 14-2 surge, and LeBron James finished with 31 points on unreal 13-of-14 shooting from the field, the best shooting percentage with that many attempts in the NBA since 2007.
New York drilled 10 threes in the first half to put this one out of reach. Tyson Chandler had 20 boards for the third time in as many games, the first Knick to do so since Willis Reed.
Oklahoma City was up 64-37 at one point, so this one was never really in doubt after the first two games between these two this year went to overtime.
The Kings were up seven with four minutes left, but their lead collapsed and Randy Foye had six points in overtime. DeMarcus Cousins was ejected before halftime after having some words with a referee, copping postgame to calling an official "a female."