It was a nine-game night in the NBA on Monday with some thrilling entertainment on offer. Most of the excitement was generated by some stellar performances from African stars, who stepped up in a massive way for their respective teams.
Bucks beat Magic in African showdown
The Milwaukee Bucks overcame a tough Orlando Magic 93-89 in a game that African players took the spotlight. The Bucks once again saw an inspired Giannis Antetokounmpo lead the way. He recorded his first triple-double of the season as he scored 21 points, grabbed 10 boards and dished 10 assists. Jabari Parker added 22 points to the total.
The Magic fell short but it wasn’t due to a lack of effort. Congo-Brazzaville’s Serge Ibaka scored a team-high 21 points and also claimed eight rebounds and blocked three shots. DRC big man Bismack Biyombo was equally impressive as he finished with a double-double 13 points and 11 boards.
Embiid helps Sixers build winning streak
The Philadelphia 76ers beat the Miami Heat 101-94. Cameroon’s Joel Embiid scored 22 points and grabbed five rebounds, blocked three shots and stole the ball in a blockbuster showing. Philly’s Nigerian-American big man Jahlil Okafor added 15 points, while Ersan Ilyasova notched a quiet double-double, 10 points and a team-high 11 rebounds. Gerald Henderson poured in 19 points for the Sixers.
The Heat were ice-cold and only had two other double-digit scorers to follow up Hassan Whiteside’s massive 32 points and 13 rebounds. Dion Waiters ended the game with 19 points and Goran Dragic had 10 points and seven assists.
Clippers steam ahead as they beat Raptors
The LA Clippers are looking imperious and they clinched another victory as they took down the Toronto Raptors 123-115. Big performances from their starters got them over the line. Blake Griffin scored 26 points, Chris Paul doubled up with 26 points and 12 assists. DeAndre Jordan had a 17-point, 15-rebound double-double.
It was the first time this season that two Cameroonian players faced off, Clippers player Luc Mbah a Moute scored 10 points and three rebounds, while Raptors rookie Pascal Siakam only scored two points.
For Toronto, Kyle Lowry led the scoring with 27 points and DeMar DeRozan had 25.
Beal stars for Wizards
Bradley Beal was a bad man in Washington as he helped cast a spell that saw the Washington Wizards vanquish the Phoenix Suns 106-101. Beal was unplayable as he dropped a massive 42 points on Phoenix. He went 14-22 from field goal range and drained 5-10 3-point shots. John Wall contributed an 18-point, 15-assist double-double, while Marcin Gortat doubled up with 10 points and 13 rebounds.
Sophomore Devin Booker was red-hot for the Suns with 30 points as he nailed six of his nine 3-point shots. Eric Bledsoe added 29 points to the total with Alex Len finishing the game with an 11-point, 10-rebound double-double.
Warriors slay Pacers
It was a one-sided win for the Golden State Warriors as they beat the Indiana Pacers 120-83. The Warriors were led to victory by Klay Thompson’s 25 points with Stephen Curry adding 22 to the team total. Kevin Durant ended the contest with a double-double 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Only three Pacers scored in double-digits with Rodney Stuckey ending the game with 21 points off the bench. Jeff Teague scored 11 and Thaddeus Young finished with 14. Paul George sat out this game due to injury.
The San Antonio Spurs clinched a 96-91 home win over the Dallas Mavericks. Seth Curry scored 23 points for Dallas and Tunisian Salah Mejri scored eight points and grabbed 11 rebounds. Kawhi Leonard top scored with 24 points for the Spurs.
The Houston Rockets claimed a 99-96 victory over the Detroit Pistons. James Harden recorded another double-double with 28 points and 11 assists. Swiss-Congolese Clint Capela also had a double-double night scoring 15 points and claiming 12 rebounds. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope’s 26 points was the Piston’s high-score.
The Boston Celtics edged the Minnesota Timberwolves 99-93 as Isaiah Thomas scored 29 points. Karl-Anthony Towns was Minnesota’s top performer as he ended with a double-double 27 points and 18 rebounds. Senegal’s Gorgui Dieng was superb with 20 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block.
The Memphis Grizzlies beat the Charlotte Hornets 105-90. Mike Conley scored 31 points for the Grizzlies and Frank Kaminsky top-scored for the Hornets with 23 points off the bench. French-Cameroonian Nicolas Batum collected eight points, five assists and four rebounds.
By Cyrus Rogers