Jazz 118, 76ers 96
Grizzlies 108, Lakers 95
Spurs 123, Nuggets 111
What went down
The last few weeks in the NBA have been wild - numerous teams now have had players sidelined due to injury, whether it's been because of COVID protocols or not.
The Grizzlies are one of them. Ja Morant sprained his knee two weeks ago. Just when the budding All-Star was doing on-court activities again, Morant went into the league's health and safety protocols yesterday. Add Dillon Brooks, who had already missed the first month of the season, to the Grizzlies’ list of absent players.
But even without Morant and Brooks, the Grizzlies now have won six of their last seven games after stomping on the Los Angeles Lakers today and it looks like they aren’t slowing down.
Memphis has been a top 10 team in offensive and defensive rating without Morant. Role players like Desmond Bane (19.2 ppg in the last seven games) and Tyus Jones (6.1 apg and 1.2 topg in the last seven games) have amped up their production to career levels. Instead of wilting without his point guard, Jaren Jackson Jr. has instead found another gear and is looking like an All-Star himself on both ends of the court.
While the Lakers haven’t been the dominant force they were pegged to be this season, it still says a lot about Memphis that they took one over a healthy Lakers squad in this state. They’re rolling at the best time possible and should be a force when Morant comes back.
Whether it be from Joe Ingles’ podcast appearances or Anthony Edwards’ postgame interviews, the Jazz have been catching strays this season – specifically Rudy Gobert.
As usual, the Jazz have been quietly great this season, having now won six straight games thanks to a monster night from Gobert against the Philadelphia 76ers.
no thoughts, just work pic.twitter.com/jf17m1ntHi— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) December 10, 2021
Gobert hauled down 21 boards, his fifth 20 rebound game of the season. He also added 17 points on five-for-eight shooting with two blocks.
It seems that the NBA-watching public has tuned out the Jazz until they prove their success translates in the playoffs. For now, they’re cruising to another top-three finish in the West.
What he said
Michael Beasley hasn’t played in an NBA game since 2019, but that hasn’t stopped his confidence.
Btw every 10 seconds another person that can’t guard me comes into the word— Michael Beasley (@Michael8easley) December 9, 2021
He must have meant “world” instead of “word” but what exactly does he mean here? Does he want to crossover babies? Who knows with Beasley.
Did you see that?
Congrats to @KingJames of the @Lakers for becoming the 5th player in @NBAHistory to record 100 triple-doubles! #NBA75 pic.twitter.com/1OHnIfHdtO— NBA (@NBA) December 10, 2021
LeBron James became the fifth player with 100 career triple-doubles.
It’s been said numerous times but what James is doing at 37 years old should not go unappreciated. Rarely does a superstar age like this.