Thunder, Pelicans go down to the wire
OKLAHOMA CITY 101 PORTLAND 90
Russell Westbrook scored 36 points Monday, and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Portland Trail Blazers, 101-90, at Oklahoma City to keep its playoff hopes alive.
Westbrook had picked up his 16th technical foul at Indiana on Sunday, which would have been an automatic one-game suspension. But it was rescinded by the NBA on Monday morning, allowing him to play in a crucial game for the Thunder, which remained tied with New Orleans for the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot.
Both teams are 44-37 with one game to play. The Thunder plays at Minnesota, the NBA’s worst team, on Wednesday, while the Pelicans are at home against San Antonio, second in the West and winner of 11 straight. New Orleans owns the tiebreaker if the teams deadlock in the standings.
New Orleans 100, at Minnesota 88: Anthony Davis had 24 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks to move the Pelicans one step closer to a playoff berth. Zach LaVine, a rookie from UCLA, had 24 points for the Timberwolves (16-65), who fell below the New York Knicks (17-64) for the worst record in the league.
at Golden State 111, Memphis 107: The Grizzlies’ reserves rallied frantically in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Warriors 41-18, but Memphis still came up short in a loss that hurt its chances for home court in the first round. Golden State’s Klay Thompson scored 42.
Chicago 113, at Brooklyn 86: The Bulls clinched home-court advantage in the first round in the East.
at Cleveland 109, Detroit 97: LeBron James returned from a day off to record a triple-double (21 points, 11 assists, 10 rebounds) as the Cavaliers tuned up for the playoffs.
Milwaukee 107, at Philadelphia 97: Michael Carter-Williams had 30 points in his first game back in Philadelphia with the Bucks.
Houston 100, at Charlotte 90: The Rockets (55-26) moved back into a tie with San Antonio atop the Southwest Division.
at Miami 100, Orlando 93: The Heat still has playoff hopes, needing a win Wednesday at Philadelphia and help in three other games.
New York 112, at Atlanta 108: Rookie Langston Galloway had a careerhigh 26 points as the Knicks stunned the East-leading Hawks.
at Utah 109, Dallas 92: Rudy Gobert had 20 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks for the Jazz.
at Clippers 110, Denver 103 at Sacramento 102, Lakers 92