Every morning, we will give you five things from the night before in the NBA to start your day.
1: Bouncing back
Overtime can be a dangerous thing. Momentum shifts as the final moments of regulation winds down and energy dissipates from 48 minutes of intense NBA battle. Overtime can be really unpredictable as teams dig deep to win those final five minutes.
When San Antonio made a comeback from down five points with a minute to go it seemed like San Antonio just had Memphis' number. The Grizzlies had struggled to defeat the Spurs ever since that fateful Playoff series a few years ago. The Spurs just were… the Spurs. Reliable and precise.
It would have been easy for the Grizzlies to hand their heads after Tony Parker drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer to force overtime. The easy bet would have been to say the Spurs had the momentum and the confidence to win the game.
Memphis were the ones to win the game though. The Grizzlies scored the first four points of overtime and won 101-98. Darrell Arthur had a big overtime. He scored 14 points in the game and Rudy Gay had his moment to shine in the fourth quarter and overtime. He hit a tough jumper to seal the game for the Grizzlies.
The Spurs did not have another buzzer beater in them.
2: Snapping the skid
The Hawks hit a rough patch. The hot start from this re-tooling team seemed to be giving way to the realities of the long NBA season. Down by 15 points in the second half, the Hawks seemed like they were going to face another difficult loss.
Atlanta had a run though and a big one against Utah. A 35-19 fourth quarter pushed Atlanta ahead in a strong surge that left Utah without an answer. The Hawks won 103-95 behind that fourth quarter and seemed to have everything right in the Highlight Factory.
Devin Harris provided some of the highlights driving hard to the basket. Ivan Johnson provided some more with his bullish play and defense.
The Jazz could not get the ball into the paint to their big bulls in Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap and when you make the Jazz rely on their guards, you have a good chance of winning.
That is what Atlanta seemed to do and down the stretch Atlanta had things rolling and the confidence to pull away for good to snap the team's losing skid.
Out of the way Manu
Durant freezes Earl Clark
Curry whips it to Lee
4: Line of the Night: Luol Deng — 33 points, 13/18 FGs
The Bulls raced out to a blowout lead against the Knicks before the Knicks won the fourth quarter 41-26 to make it a 108-101 deficit in the Bulls' win. The big reason for that massive lead Chicago built was the efficient night Luol Deng posted in his season-high 33-point effort.
5: You can quote me on that
This was definitely an example. I told them when Tony Parker hit the 3, you have two ways to go. You can hold your head and feel sorry for yourself or you can suck it up and go back and win the game. . . . It was a test of our mental toughness and our togetherness.
I expect most games to be fourth-quarter games. And I'd expect our team to play with more intensity and energy early in games. Between missed layups and free throws and turnovers, it was a struggle offensively. But we scored enough easy baskets in the end.