While Ja Morant and the NCAA tournament provided much of the basketball buzz across the nation on Thursday, the NBA was still in action.
There's only two Thursdays left in the regular season, so let's cut to the (postseason) chase.
Here are six updates to the standings following a six-game night.
Milwaukee clinched its first Central Division title since 2001 following Indiana's loss
With both Denver and Golden State winning, the Nuggets remain a half-game back of first in the West
Utah's loss means there's now a four-way tie with San Antonio, Oklahoma City and LA (Clippers) for seeds 5-8 in the West
Indiana's loss means Boston is just a half-game back of fourth in the East
Charlotte moves three games out of the eighth spot in the East following a win
Detroit moves one game ahead of the Nets for the sixth spot in the East following a win
Jazz’s streak ends
Was this equivalent to Murray State's upset of Marquette?
The Jazz flew into Atlanta riding a five-game win streak, a stretch that propelled them to fifth in the Western Conference standings. The lottery-bound Hawks, however, stunned Utah with a 117-115 victory that sent Donovan Mitchell and company back to the West's seventh slot.
Trae Young recorded 23 points and 11 assists, outscoring everyone in the fourth quarter and hitting the go-ahead three-point play. Mitchell poured in a game-high 34 points and nearly drilled a last-second 3-pointer that could’ve sent the game to overtime.
It was a tough setback for the Jazz, who held the fifth spot for all of 24 hours. But sudden shifts are expected in the cutthroat West standings at this point. The good news for the Jazz: Of the four teams tied with a 42-30 record in the West, Utah has the easiest schedule remaining.
Towns passes Love
Karl-Anthony Towns has passed Kevin Love for fourth on the Timberwolves’ all-time scoring list. Love spent six seasons with Minnesota, while the 23-year-old Towns is still in year four.
Towns now trails Sam Mitchell, Andrew Wiggins and Kevin Garnett. He’s averaging 22.0 points in his career, a mark that would be good enough for No. 1 in Timberwolves history.
The two-time All-Star has been on a tear this past month, averaging 31.3 points (second in NBA) and 14 rebounds (third in NBA) since Feb. 25.
Young does it again
Remember when Trae Young completely lost his defender with a nifty behind-the-back dribble for possibly the most viral play of his rookie season?
If not, here’s a refresher:
Troy Brown is still spinning. Young brought the move back out against the Jazz, and while no one went in circles this time, both defenders were thrown for a loop by these sick handles.
Fox on the loose
Swipa steals, Swipa slams.
Booker one-legged 3?
Andre Drummond could only smile.
In case you’re wondering what Tim Duncan is up to these days…
This Is Why We Play
As always, it's bigger than basketball.
After tonight's game, @spidadmitchell gifted a young fan, the daughter of his 4th grade teacher, with a $25,000 scholarship through his SPIDACARES Foundation 👏(via @E_Woodyard) pic.twitter.com/HXgfYfglVU— ESPN (@espn) March 22, 2019
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