About Last Night
About Last Night: Gregg Popovich climbs all-time wins list
Popovich passes Riley, Rockets snap skid and Lowry breaks out of slump
Khari Arnold, NBA.com
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich moved into fourth on the all-time wins list for coaches on Tuesday, passing Pat Riley.
The five-time champion and three-time Coach of the Year earned his 1,211th career win following the Spurs’ 111-86 beatdown of the Suns. He now sits behind Jerry Sloan (1,221), Lenny Wilkins (1,332), and Don Nelson (1,335).
It wasn’t an All-Star who carried Popovich to his milestone victory.
With DeMar DeRozan scoring a season-low five points, undrafted guard Bryn Forbes got things going for San Antonio. He notched the first double-double of his career, dropping a season-high 24 points on 5-for-5 shooting from deep to go along with 11 rebounds.
The 25-year-old Michigan State product has scored in double figures 21 times this season, the most among undrafted players in the league.
Chris Paul recorded his first triple-double of the season and James Harden poured in 29 points, but it was shockingly the bench that helped snap the Rockets’ three-game losing streak.
When the Rockets were facing a 15-point deficit in the first half, the reserves helped guide a 24-6 run that jolted the offense. Gerald Green finished with 13 points, Danuel House added 12, Nene scored 10 and for the first time this season, Houston had three players off the bench reach double digits.
”They won the game for us,” Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni said. ”They turned it around when we were down 15, and they came in, and Nene, Danuel House and Gerald put a lot of energy.”
*Wednesday on NBA TV Blazers vs. Rockets re-airs (4 p.m. ET)
Lowry re-finds groove
Before Tuesday’s contest at Staples Center, Kyle Lowry was in a rough shooting slump:
Dec. 9 vs. Bucks: 0 points, 0-5 FG in 34 minutes
Dec. 7 vs Nets: 3 points, 1-8 FG in 36 minutes
Dec. 5 vs. Sixers: 7 points, 2-8 FG in 33 minutes
Dec. 3 vs. Nuggets: 5 points, 1-7 FG in 34 minutes
The Raptors point guard was back playing at an All-Star level throughout a dominant 123-99 win over the Clippers, dropping 21 points on 8-for-13 shooting in three quarters.
It was the perfect time for Lowry to re-activate his shooting touch with Kawhi Leonard sidelined and Toronto facing Golden State on Wednesday for a rematch of arguably the best game of the season so far.
A fun guy
Leonard may be focused on getting healthy for that game because he isn’t in the holiday spirit at the moment.
Reporter – “Merry Christmas. Can you talk about your favorite Christmas moment?”
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) December 12, 2018
Good thing the Raptors are off Christmas Day.
Gay goes coast-to-coast
Suns sophomore Josh Jackson went for the tomahawk jam, only to get swatted away by Spurs veteran Rudy Gay. The 6-foot-8 forward drove the ball down court and finished with a layup on the other end.
The sequence in video:
Rudy Gay DENIES it at the rim and converts on the other end! 💪🚫
— NBA (@NBA) December 12, 2018
The sequence in photo: