SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Lauri Markkanen scored a career-high 38 points, including an incredible roundhouse shot that beat the shot clock with 38.5 seconds left, as the Utah Jazz defeated the Phoenix Suns 134-133 on Friday night.
“I don’t know what Lauri’s ceiling is. I don’t think any of us do it based on what we watch night and night,” said Utah coach Will Hardy.
— NBA (@NBA) November 19, 2022
In a wildly entertaining shootout on offense, Utah’s defense played a crucial role. The Suns hit 58.2% in three quarters but hit 10 of 27 in the fourth period and turned the ball over in the last minute.
“With all the emotion from our losing streak, we just wanted to try and find a way to win and you just do your best in a game like this,” he said. Mike Conleywho forced an away challenge and blocked a shot in the closing minutes.
With 45 points in the first three quarters, the Suns became a star Devin Booker he had just two free throws in the final quarter and a non-essential shot on cue to finish with 49.
One word to describe Devin Booker tonight: INSTANT
— NBA (@NBA) November 19, 2022
“He had a good game, but I hit him too hard,” said Phoenix coach Monty Williams. “This is not something we want to do in the long term. We lost to a group of guys and we needed him to score so we had a chance. But we’re just putting a lot of pressure on him to lead us offensively because we’re not getting the stops we want.”
This season, Markkanen has played five games with 30 points and scored his 38 points on just 18 field goals.
“His teammates know how good he is and how good he can be and they probably give him more opportunities than me,” Hardy said.
Matter of fact Jordan Clarkson admired his 15-of-18 shots when he looked over the score in the locker room after the game. “Damn, that’s good,” he said.
Booker marked his 19th game with at least 40 points but failed to get a ball or many good looks at the end. He also has 10 assists and 8 rebounds.
“The whole game we fought uphill. I think we gave them the confidence to start the game,” Booker said. And perhaps they spent too much energy on the return.
Chris Paul missed his fifth game with a right heel injury, and without him the Suns were 2-3 up.
7:28 to the game Damion Lee gave the Suns their first lead in a 121–120 three-pointer. The game went back and forth until Clarkson and Markkanen made late jumps with a high degree of difficulty during the clutch.
Before the last shot, Markkanen said: “There were a lot of layups and a lot of dunks indeed. Teammates used to pass the ball to me when I was open and we did some good things for easy viewing.”
By halftime, Beasley had tied his season high of 18 points and ended up with seven triples and 27 points. Clarkson added 20 points while Conley had 13 points and 10 assists.
The Jazz led with 19 in the first half after a hot start of 10 of 12 from the field, including 6 of 8 from three-point range. Utah led 74-66 in the first half, marking the fourth game this season with at least 74 points at halftime.
After surprising the league 10-3 to lead the Western Conference, the Jazz lost three games in a row before this thrilling victory over Phoenix.
The Detroit Pistons started the season hoping to compete for a play-in spot, but they faltered and started 3-14. With this latest news, they may be the first team to turn to the Victor Vembanyama lotteries.
Cade Cunninghamwho has missed the team’s last five games, is considering shin surgery that could put him out of action for an extended period of time, according to multiple reports.
The Pistons and Cade Cunningham were trying to determine if surgery was needed to treat Cunningham’s problematic left calf, league sources say.
After a strong start to his second season, Cunningham missed Detroit’s final five games.
More NBA from me: https://t.co/LGN9cVpeGP
— Mark Stein (@TheSteinLine) November 19, 2022
There are reports that this is a stress fracture of the tibia. From James Edwards III and Shams Charania of The Athletic:
There is still hope that this last week of rest has quelled the inflammation and pain enough to return to the floor sooner rather than later, but this can still only be resolved with time. At worst, the chronic pain continues to persist, and Cunningham takes a route that causes him to miss an extended period. However, according to league sources, Cunningham is trying to turn every stone before he decides to have surgery.
Regardless of which route Cunningham takes, he is expected to be out indefinitely as everyone invested in the rising star’s future works to determine the best course of action for his long-term health.
The operation will likely end Cunningham’s season, according to In Street Clothing’s Jeff Stotts.
Re: Cade Cunningham: If he manages a stress fracture in his tibia (tibia), surgery will likely be over in the season. The average loss of time due to stress-related tibial injuries requiring surgery is 61 games.
— Jeff Stotts (@InStreetClothes) November 19, 2022
Cunningham, the Pistons’ top pick in 2021, had an outstanding rookie season and impressed early in his second campaign, posting 19.9 points, 6.2 rebounds and six assists per game until he sat down with a sore shin.
Whether he gets surgery or not, if he misses an extended spell, it will leave the Pistons with one of the worst records in the NBA. Given the depth of talent at the top of next year’s draft board – not just Wembanyama, but Scoot Henderson, Nick Smith, Amen Thompson and others – the Pistons will need to consider what is best for the franchise’s long-term success. And it may not be many wins this season.
Knicks fans have been begging for help at point guard over the last couple of seasons.
This season with Jalen Brunson taking on the role and playing it well, the Knicks have enough depth to be willing to trade some of it – they’ll listen Derrick Rose or Immanuel Quickly suggestions, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic.
The Knicks have shown a willingness to include Derrick Rose and Immanuel Quickly in trade talks, league sources say, to address the team’s oversupply at quarterback during the season.
Maybe Leon Rose and the front office can trade him for another player that Tom Thibodeau doesn’t want and won’t play.
Whether the Knicks can get a replacement player to really help them with Rose or Quickly right now is under discussion as both seasons are in decline.
Rose, 34, has struggled to find rhythm this season in an even more limited role (less than 14 minutes a night). Rose is averaging 6.8 points per game with a real shooting percentage of 50.8, well below the league average.
However, Rose has a close relationship with Thibodeaux, which could make Rose and the Knicks think more about a deal with Quickly, who is younger (23) and will generate more interest from teams. However, Quickly is also struggling this season, shooting 36.5% overall (49 percent shooting) and only 8.9 points per night….