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NBA Scores: Steph Curry is inevitable

Plus: Washington hadn’t won in San Antonio since 1999?!?!

NBA: Golden State Warriors at Oklahoma City Thunder Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

Monday Night Football is always a drag. We can all agree on that. The matchups are often mediocre, and even when they’re even somewhat exciting on paper, they promise something that ultimately can’t be delivered.

I petition that we rid our sports calendars of MNF, even if it’s symbolically, and turn Monday night into a night dominated by the NBA. Of course, there was no MNF last night, given how late in the season we are. But just imagine if last night’s slate — an epic one, to be clear — had come up against a thrilling 13-9 nail-biter between the Denver Broncos and the Washington Commanders. It would’ve been lost in the shuffle, just another night in an 82-game season for all to forget.

I refuse to forget. And I hope this recap helps you remember, too.

Sacramento Kings v Minnesota Timberwolves Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

Kings outlast Timberwolves in OT, 118-111

Sometimes, the little things are the difference. And on Monday, Sacramento’s win came down to fastbreak points, turnovers, and points off turnovers. (This one’s for the nerds.) The Kings had a season-high 15 steals and turned 18 turnovers by the Timberwolves into 21 points. If not for Minnesota’s carelessness down the stretch — 10 of those 18 turnovers came in the second half and overtime — perhaps Anthony Edwards’ 33-point night would’ve been enough for a win.

Instead, Sacramento snapped a two-game losing streak behind 32 from De’Aaron Fox, 19 from Malik Monk, and a 17-point, 13-rebound double-double from Domantas Sabonis. After he fouled out in the fourth quarter, Trey Lyles stepped up; he scored eight of his 11 points in overtime, ultimately propelling the Kings to victory. The beam is LIT.

Warriors outlast Thunder behind double-double from Steph, 128-120

Much like Joe Burrow with the Cincinnati Bengals — despite the AFC Championship game’s result — the Golden State Warriors’ title window will remain open as long as Curry is relevant, healthy, and with a basketball in his hands. His 36-point, 12-assist double-double on Monday will be the story, and rightfully so; without it, this might have been a cakewalk for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (31 points and seven dimes) and the Thunder, who kept things close from tip-off to the final whistle.

Of course, Curry had plenty of backup, primarily in the form of Klay Thompson (28) and Andrew Wiggins (15), while SGA, Josh Giddey (21), and Jalen Williams (19) were sure to keep this one interesting. In the end, though, it’s the Warriors who kept their streak alive, as they’ve now won three in a row.

Nets cruise past shorthanded Lakers, 121-104

With no Kevin Durant or Ben Simmons for the Nets and no LeBron James or Anthony Davis for the Lakers, what would otherwise have been a big-ticket matchup played out on NBA TV with a whimper. The only thing L.A. had going for it was a pretty impressive outing from Russell Westbrook — 17 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists — while Brooklyn’s plan was pretty down-the-middle: get the ball to Kyrie and everybody get the f**k out of the way. He led the Nets with 26 points, seven rebounds, and six assists, while Cam Thomas and Patty Mills added 21 apiece.

Suns drop Raptors behind big night from Bridges, 114-106

Mikal Bridges led the way for Phoenix with 29 points, and even inspired Deandre Ayton to tease the injured Devin Booker regarding a potential change that will be made upon his return.

Seven Wizards finish in double-figures to handle Spurs, 127-106

Somehow, this is real. File it away for future trivia purposes.

Dame outduels Dejounte to lead Blazers past Hawks, 129-125

Portland needed a win. It had lost four of six entering Monday’s tilt with the Hawks, and despite a 40-piece from Dejounte Murray, the Trail Blazers managed to escape, thanks in large part to Damian Lillard’s 42-point outing, one-upping the Hawks guard by literally one bucket. But it’s par for the course for Lillard at this point: Since Jan. 12, he is averaging 38.8 points per game. He’s also scored at least 40 four times since Jan. 15. If Portland ever had its head on straight, he might find himself squarely in the MVP conversation.

Magic come from behind to stun Sixers, 119-109

It’s hard to defeat even the most mediocre competition when the only player who really, wholly shows up for the contest is the player everyone always expects to show up. Joel Embiid, to the tune of 30 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, two steals, and two blocks, led the way for the otherwise paltry 76ers, who only saw Tobias Harris (17), James Harden (17), and Matisse Thybulle (10) finish in double-figures.

The Magic, meanwhile, put together the type of team outing that squads dream about, particularly when the opponent is on as hot of a streak as Philly was entering this game (seven straight wins; a 9-1 record in its last 10 tries). The effort was so evident that, even while trailing by as many as 21 midway through the second quarter, Orlando never seemed out of it. Paolo Banchero finished with a team-high 29 points and nine rebounds, but Mo Wagner (22), Franz Wagner (19), Wendell Carter (12 and nine boards), and Markelle Fultz (12 and 10 assists) balanced the attack. Just like Philly’s hottest stretch of the season, Orlando’s two-game losing streak is no more.

Mavericks survive Pistons’ upset bid, 111-105

It only took 53 points from Luka Doncic to do it. The only other Maverick to finish in double-figures was Spencer Dinwiddie, with 12. Mark Cuban, I beg of you: Get this unicorn some help, please.