All 22 teams participating in the NBA Restart will play three scrimmages before game action officially tips off on July 30. The NBA will be using 10-minute quarters instead of the usual 12 minutes for each team’s first game. The second and third games for each team will feature regulation quarters of 12 minutes.
Below are game recaps from all games played on July 22.
- LA Clippers 99, Orlando Magic 90
- Denver Nuggets 89, Washington Wizards 82
- New Orleans Pelicans 99, Brooklyn Nets 68
- Miami Heat 104, Sacramento Kings 98
- Powell: Exhibition games tip off new NBA normal
* * *
Clippers 99, Magic 90
The LA Clippers defeated the Orlando Magic, 99-90, on Wednesday afternoon in the opening scrimmage of the NBA restart in Orlando.
The squads broke ice on the NBA’s four-month-plus shutdown with both teams playing the majority of their regulars in the 40-minute scrimmage. Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Aaron Gordon and Nikola Vucevic were among those who had a solid workload.
Lou Williams scored a game-high 22 points, while George had 18 points and five rebounds as the Clippers turned in a dominant 32-16 advantage in the second quarter. The Magic chipped six points off their 11-point halftime deficit in the third quarter, but Los Angeles outpaced them by four points in the fourth to secure the win.
Leonard, Reggie Jackson and Marcus Morris each had nine points for the Clippers. Joakim Noah started at center with both Ivica Zubac and Montrezl Harrell away from Orlando and totaled four points, five rebounds and three assists.
Vucevic led the way for the Magic with 18 points on 61.5% shooting from the field, adding 10 rebounds and three assists. Michael Carter-Williams followed with a bench-leading 16 points, and Terrence Ross scored 14 points. Gordon posted 13 points, seven rebounds, three assists and one block. The starting backcourt of D.J. Augustin and Evan Fournier mustered a combined five points on 0-for-6 shooting.
— By Juan Carlos Blanco, RotoWire
* * *
Nuggets 89, Wizards 82
The Denver Nuggets defeated the Washington Wizards, 89-82, in an NBA Season Restart Scrimmage at Orlando on Wednesday.
Tied 68-68 with six minutes remaining, the Nuggets put the game away with a 21-14 run. Denver led for 30 minutes of the 40-minute scrimmage, shooting 44% from the field and 32% from 3-point range while holding the Wizards to 37-percent shooting, including 27% from long range.
The Nuggets, who blocked seven shots and out-rebounded the Wizards, 47-34, were led by Troy Daniels’ 22 points, six rebounds and three assists. Nikola Jokic collected 16 points, seven rebounds and seven assists. The 7-foot-2 Bol Bol, who did not play during the regular season because of a foot injury, made his Nuggets’ debut with 16 points, 10 rebounds and six blocks as a starter.
The Wizards were led by Rui Hachimura, who totaled 18 points and nine rebounds. Troy Brown posted 12 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals. Ish Smith was the only other player in double figures, leading the bench with 10 points, two rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Both teams are off until Saturday, with Washington playing the LA Clippers and Denver facing the New Orleans Pelicans.
— By Joel Bartilotta, RotoWire
* * *
Pelicans 99, Nets 68
The New Orleans Pelicans defeated the Brooklyn Nets, 99-68, on Wednesday in the opening scrimmage for both teams in Orlando.
The Pelicans pulled ahead late in the first quarter and took a nine-point lead into the second, where they kept up the momentum to build a 56-35 lead by halftime. The Pelicans pushed their lead to 24 points in the third, but the Nets rallied to make it a 17-point game heading into the final frame. New Orleans bounced back with an 8-0 run to start the fourth and went on to outscore the Nets by a 28-14 margin in the final period to secure the 31-point victory.
Rookie guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker and veteran E’Twaun Moore tallied 14 points apiece to lead the Pelicans, who were without Zion Williamson. Brandon Ingram added 12 points, while Lonzo Ball finished with eight points, three rebounds, three assists and a block.
Meanwhile, for the Nets, Dzanan Musa led the way with 11 points in 27 minutes. Starting at center, Jarrett Allen tallied a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while Caris LeVert and Rodions Kurucs each chipped in 10 points. LeVert struggled from the field, hitting just five of 18 attempts in 22 minutes of action.
The Nets next scrimmage will take place on Saturday against the Spurs. The Pelicans will also square off against the Nuggets on Saturday.
— By Dan Bruno, RotoWire
* * *
Heat 104, Kings 98
The Miami Heat defeated the Sacramento Kings, 104-98, on Wednesday in the opening scrimmage for both teams in Orlando.
The Heat got off to a strong start and quickly gained control of the game, jumping to a 27-21 lead after the first quarter. Miami would stretch its lead even further in the second, gaining a 12-point advantage heading into the halftime break. The Kings showed signs of a potential comeback in the third, however. Sacramento outscored Miami 27-17 in the third period, trimming the deficit to just two points entering the fourth quarter.
The Heat closed things out effectively, though, scoring 31 points in a 10-minute fourth quarter to hang on for the 104-98 victory. A Kyle Guy jumper pulled the Kings within four with just over 24 seconds remaining. But Kelly Olynyk was able to ice the game at the free throw line, where he knocked down a pair with 12 seconds to play.
Duncan Robinson led Miami with 18 points, while shooting 5-of-8 from 3-point range. Veteran point guard Goran Dragic added 11 points, and Tyler Herro notched 15 points off the bench. Jimmy Butler filled the stat sheet, ending with nine points, three rebounds, two assists and one steal in just 12 minutes of action.
Buddy Hield paced the Kings with 19 points off the bench, while Nemanja Bjelica (13 points) and Kent Bazemore (11 points, four rebounds) also posted double-digit scoring performances. In 18 minutes off the bench, DaQuan Jeffries added 12 points of his own to go with a pair of assists.
Both teams will play their next scrimmage Saturday. Miami will face the Jazz, while the Heat will match up against the East-leading Milwaukee Bucks.
— By Juan Aravena, RotoWire
* * *