The Rundown: Heat improve to 6-1, CP3 now 3rd in all-time assists

Published November 3, 2021, 2:00 PMMiguel Flores

Jimmy Butler spearheaded the Heat to their sixth win of the season, while Chris Paul moved to third on the NBA’s all-time assists list.


Bucks 117, Pistons 89

Heat 125, Mavericks 110

Jazz 119, Kings 113

Suns 112, Pelicans 100

Lakers 119, Rockets 117

What went down

If you planned out your NBA viewing last night and saw there weren’t a lot of interesting games today, then you’re in for a surprise.

Contenders played struggling squads. Instead of being a day of blowouts, the bottom teams made the big guys sweat for their win.

First, the Utah Jazz needed a couple of 30-point performances from Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley to outlast the Sacramento Kings. Mitchell tallied 32 while Conley managed 30, both needing to pile up baskets in the fourth period as the rest of Utah’s scoring core fell silent.

Sacramento’s much-improved defense deserves a ton of credit as sophomore Tyrese Haliburton and rookie Davion Mitchell gave the Jazz headaches throughout the game. Harrison Barnes also continues to have the best season of his career, tallying 23 points for the visitors. Still, their lack of execution down the stretch cost them against a more experienced squad.

In Phoenix, the Suns were without Deandre Ayton, but they were still big favorites against a New Orleans Pelicans side missing both Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram. But the visiting Pelicans ran the Suns out of the gym in the first half, taking a 10-point lead.

In the end, Phoenix slowly took control. Leading by two with less than seven minutes to go, the Suns were dragged to the finish line by Chris Paul, who connected on four straight shots, before Devin Booker made a rare 3-pointer to bury the Pelicans.

The Los Angeles Lakers barely played defense when they faced the young Houston Rockets. All game, it seemed the Lakers were doing just enough to keep the Rockets at bay.

Up by four in the final minutes, the Lakers got into late trouble after a Jalen Green triple followed by a split at the free throw line from Malik Monk. The Rockets went for the win to close the game but Kevin Porter Jr.’s last-second shot just fell short.

Utah, Phoenix, and Los Angeles all could have made this slate of games a lot less stressful but they chose to keep us entertained.

Big-time baller

In the day's marquee matchup, the Miami Heat scored their sixth consecutive double-digit win after scorching the Dallas Mavericks on the road.

Though the Heat got plenty of contributions from up and down their lineup, Jimmy Butler continued to lead this band of dogs. The CEO of Big Face Coffee managed 23 points, six rebounds, six assists, three steals, and a block. He’s had better lines this season, but he didn’t need to put up numbers against the Mavs with Bam Adebayo on a roll and Kyle Lowry breaking out of his slump.

Butler is making a case for MVP this season. Miami was a disappointment last year but expect them to continue to dominate the East this time around.

What he said

A big piece of the best sports TV show won't be around for a while. Ernie Johnson is grieving the death of their son, Michael.

Ernie is known for being the comedic arbiter of Inside The NBA, but he had also been inspired by Michael over the years to spread love and positivity through talks.

To pay tribute to Michael, TNT posted this touching speech Ernie gave a few years ago to the staff of Turner Sports.

Did you see that?

Chris Paul passed Steve Nash for third all-time in career assists with this nifty dish to Jae Crowder.

He finished with 18 assists for the game, three shy of a career-high he set in 2007 when he was still with the New Orleans Hornets.

Perhaps more eye-popping were the assist totals of Jason Kidd and John Stockton, who are second and first, respectively, on the career assists leaderboard.

With how load management works nowadays, it seems Stockton’s record is etched in vibranium.


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