It’s March, and every morning we find ourselves checking the Western Conference standings.
That’s right. With 18 games left, your Wolves are 38-26, third in the Western Conference! But it’s not exactly a very comfortable conference. In fact, it’s quite cramped and crowded. The difference between the three seed and the nine seed in the West is just four games.
Let’s recap what went down in games impacting the Wolves on Wednesday night.
In The Brow We Trust
My roommate and I had an argument last night. And by argument I mean the opposite of that because every time we intend to argue on something, we end up just agreeing with each other. It's dumb.
The question was, if you’re a Wolves fan, do you cheer for the Pelicans or Spurs on Wednesday night? We both agreed with the Pelicans because you’d always want the team closest to you in the standings to fall.
We got our wish, but man, do the Pellies look tough right now.
Going into the fourth quarter the Pelicans were down eight, but thanks to nine fourth-quarter points from E’Twaun Moore, the Pelicans outscored the Spurs 34-21 in the fourth quarter, grabbing their seventh-straight win.
The Spurs led by as many as 15 points tonight against the Pelicans.
Over the last 10 seasons, San Antonio was 211-0 when leading at home by 15 or more in the second half.
Every other team had multiple such losses in that span.
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) March 1, 2018
Anthony Davis had a ho-hum 26 points and 15 rebounds, which was somewhat of a disappointment after scored 38 or more points in five of his previous six games. Shame on you, Anthony Davis!
The Pelicans moved to 35-26 overall, good for the five spot in the West, just 1.5 games back from the Wolves.
As for the Spurs, they fell to 36-26 and are 3-7 in their last 10 games. They are still in fourth in the West, but their All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge sprained his right ankle and didn’t return.
I’m not going to say the Spurs are in trouble without Kawhi Leonard and Aldridge, because the Spurs are the Spurs. But man, this is going to be tough for them if Aldridge is out for a long stretch.
RIP Wes Johnson’s Ankles
The Rockets expectedly beat the Clippers 105-92 in Los Angeles. Three players hit 20 points for the Rockets, even with Chris Paul shooting just 3-for-12 from the field and 1-for-5 from deep.
That wasn’t the story, though.
The story was the disappearance, likely forever, of Wes Johnson’s ankle.
Late in the first quarter, James Harden did this to Johnson (NSFW).
Oh my good god this is it, the most disrespectful act of 2018 NBA. Harden crosses up Wes Johnson, STARES AT HIM ‼️ wets 3 in his face pic.twitter.com/j6W0PxMMQF
— James Wobden (@World_Wide_Wob) March 1, 2018
To cross him up and stare AND to make the shot . . . that’s disrespectful and beautiful at the same time.
Johnson didn’t play after that.
I’m sorry, Wes. Take care. Think happy thoughts.
The Rockets moved back into first in the West with a 48-13 record, up 11.5 games on the Wolves. The Clippers fell to 32-28, a half game back from the eight seed and four games back from the Wolves.
Because Of Course, It’s Russell Westbrook!
It looked like we were set for a classic Mavericks upset over the Thunder.
First, our boy Dwight Powell got revenge, hitting a layup at the buzzer to send the game into overtime. This happened after Powell missed two free throws a minute earlier that would have tied the game.
— NBA (@NBA) March 1, 2018
In overtime, Harrison Barnes somehow made a shot that I have no idea went in. But I don’t play in the NBA, so I don’t understand these things. This shot came with 1:21 left to give the Mavericks a 110-108 lead. The team traded missed 3-pointers (a very bad one from Wes Matthews that has apparently been deleted from the internet because I can't find it) before Russell Westbrook did his thing.
Westbrook drove to the lane, hit a layup while getting fouled. Hit the free throw. And the Thunder held onto a 111-110 win.
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) March 1, 2018
OKC moves to 36-27 with the win, seventh in the West and 1.5 games back from the Wolves.
In things that could be problematic, Carmelo Anthony finished with 12 points, shooting 5-for-14 from the field, 2-for-7 from the 3-point line and no free throws. In his last three games, he’s averaging 11.7 points while shooting 32.6 percent from the field, 25 percent from the 3-point line and just 0.7 free-throw attempts per game. Yikes.
We’ll check back in this afternoon, previewing tonight’s games.