The Detroit Pistons and the San Antonio Spurs are still in free fall. Meanwhile, three 40-plus-gal performances stood out. The NBA on Friday morning
Who will get the next win? In the slugfest between the NBA basement dwellers Detroit Pistons and San Antonio Spurs, both teams extended their losing streaks on Friday night (CET). While the Pistons have now lost 16 in a row after their 112-118 defeat at the New York Knicks, a new record in franchise history, the Spurs (3-15) have now lost 13 games in a row after a good start to the season.
The Texans, led by iconic coach Gregg Popovich and rookie Victor Wembanyama, lost 135-137 to the Atlanta Hawks in front of their home crowd in a real “target shootout”. “Wemby” played strongly despite hip problems and gave the visitors a run for their money with 21 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks, but Atlanta (9-9), led by top man Trae Young (45 points, 14 assists), ultimately ran out winners despite trailing by 15 points at one stage.
San Antonio remains last in the West and has the same record as almost exactly 27 years ago: In December 1996, the Texans sacked coach Bob Hill after a poor start to the season, the decision was made by then general manager Popovich – who then took over himself and became a coaching legend.
A quick trip back to Manhattan. The match-winner there was Jalen Brunson. The Knicks guard stood out in the win over the woeful Pistons with 42 points, while center Isaiah Hartenstein used his 17 minutes for two points, three rebounds and three steals. The Knicks are 11-7, while Detroit is now 2-17 in the midst of its misery.
Sixers are in the books at 28
The Pistons still have some time before the longest losing streak in history, which belongs to the Philadelphia 76ers, who dropped 28 games in a row between March and December 2015. Detroit are already in the lead when it comes to the playoffs – they have lost their last 14 encounters in the knockout phase since May 2008.
Meanwhile, things continue to go up and down for Daniel Theis and the Los Angeles Clippers. The world champions lost the Californian duel at the Golden State Warriors by 114:120. With eight wins and ten defeats, the Clippers are eleventh in the Western Conference and had to let the “Dubs” (9-10) led by Steph Curry (26 points) pass them. Coming off the bench, Theis contributed ten points and two assists and two rebounds each.
“Not our style”: Heat turn up the heat in Q4
The Miami Heat (11-8) turned their game around against the Indiana Pacers (9-8) thanks to 45 points in the final period and ended up winning 142-132. The Heat had only scored more points in a fourth quarter once before. “That’s certainly not the way we play basketball,” Butler said. “But a win is a win.” The protagonist scored 36 points and his team hit 15 of its last 17 shots. Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton’s career-best 44 points ended up being worthless.
Caruso gives Chicago a run for its money
In the neighboring duel with the Milwaukee Bucks (13-6), the previously rather disappointing Chicago Bulls (6-14) somewhat surprisingly kept the upper hand with a 120:113 overtime victory and once again made the United Center roar. Especially when crowd favorite Alex Caruso sent the game into overtime with a buzzer-beater “from downtown”. The top scorers were Chicago’s Nikola Vucevic (29, ten rebounds) and Giannis Antetokounmpo (26, 14 rebounds) for the visitors, while Damian Lillard added 13 baskets for the Bucks.