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Western Conference Playoff Update | You Can Only Control What You Can Control

by Kyle Ratke, Digital Content Manager

Digital Content Manager

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What a Tuesday night in the NBA it was as far as playoff implications go.

Including the Wolves game, because that’s the most important one for their own playoff chances, there were SEVEN games that effected the Wolves in some sort of way last night.

While you know by now, the Wolves beat the Wizards in a wild comeback, moving to 40-29, but still sixth in the West.

The Wolves didn’t get much help from the teams ahead of them last night, but as my fifth-grade teacher said, you can only control what you can control.

Let’s breakdown Tuesday night’s games:

Westbrook Gets Triple-Double No. 100

The Thunder beat the Hawks 119-107 on the second night of a back-to-back to move to 41-29, fourth in the West, a half game ahead of the Wolves.

Russell Westbrook finished with 32 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists. It’s his 100th career triple-double. He becomes the fourth player in league history to accomplish that, so that’s pretty neat.

OKC is back at it Friday night, hosting the LA Clippers.

Speaking of which . . . 

DeAndre Jordan Still Plays For The Clippers

The Clippers came away with a 112-106 road win over the Bulls, their fifth win in their last six games.

DeAndre Jordan, who is the last man standing from Lob City, finished with 29 points, 18 rebounds, five assists and two blocks. Over the last seven games, Jordan has averaged 18.6 rebounds. There are some things in life that just can’t be explained.

LA improves to 37-29, seventh in the West, 1.5 games back from the Wolves. This is a team who lost Chris Paul and J.J. Redick in the offseason, and traded Blake Griffin this season. Great job by Doc Rivers and crew.

Pellies Hold On vs. Hornets

It was tied at 92 going in the fourth quarter, but the Pelicans came together late, beating the Hornets 119-115 in New Orleans.

The win puts the Pelicans at 38-28, a mere 0.2 percentage points ahead of the Wolves.

Anthony Davis won’t win the MVP, but he continues to put up MVP numbers, finishing with 31 points, 14 rebounds, five blocks, three assists and two steals.

If the Pelicans want to hold onto a top-six seed and avoid a matchup with the Rockets or Warriors, they’ll need Davis to continue these performances.

The upcoming three-game stretch for the Pellies isn’t the easiest. They play the Spurs on the road Thursday, followed by two home games against the Rockets and Celtics.

Did The Magic Show Up To The Arena?

The Spurs, who had lost eight of their previous 10 games, beat the Magic by 36 points at home.

Jordan, hit the people with some facts.

Nobody on the Magic scored more than 10 points. I’m not real sure what else to write about this game.

The Spurs move to 38-30, ninth in the West.

Did The Pistons Show Up To The Arena?

The Jazz, who are one of the hottest teams in the NBA, beat the Pistons by 31 points at home.

Stanley Johnson was a -29 for the Pistons. Jameer Nelson and Henry Ellenson shot a combined 0-for-10. I’m not sure what else to write about this game.

The Jazz move to 38-30, eighth in the West. They hold the tiebreaker over the Spurs with a 3-0 season-series lead.

Utah, winners of seven straight, host the Suns on Thursday night.

THE KUZ!

This is the only game that went the Wolves’ way on Tuesday night. The Lakers beat the Nuggets 112-103 behind 26 points and 13 rebounds from the Kuzminator, Kyle Kuzma.

The Nuggets are 4-5 in their last nine games, which isn’t horrible, but won’t be enough to make the Western Conference playoffs. They’ll need to go on a run, and soon. Luckily for them, they have the Pistons and Grizzlies coming up on their schedule, two pretty winnable games.

Denver is 37-31, 10th in the West and 2.5 games back from the Wolves.

No preview for tonight’s games since none directly impact Minnesota’s playoff chances.

We’ll talk you cats tomorrow.