Los Angeles Lakers 106-111 Portland Trail Blazers
Damian Lillard top-scored for the Portland Trail Blazers as they beat the Los Angeles Lakers 111-106 in a crucial contest in the Western Conference. Lillard scored 38 points to go with his seven assists as fans were present for the first time at the Moda Center this season. The defeat saw the Los Angeles Lakers leapfrogged by the Portland Trail Blazers into sixth place on the table. This season the positions 7-10 will play a play-in tournament for two places in the playoffs.
Anthony Davis passed a late fitness test to return for the LA Lakers. He scored 36 points to go with his 12 rebounds and 5 assists in vain. This was the Lakers’ eighth loss in ten games. The Lakers were without the injured LeBron James and Dennis Schroeder. In their absence, Alex Caruso and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 18 points and 17 points respectively.
Denver Nuggets 120-127 Utah Jazz
Bojan Bogdanovic scored a career-high 48 points as the Utah Jazz got the better of the Denver Nuggets on Friday night. Bogdanovic went 16 of 23 from the field including a career-high eight 3-pointers. This was a fourth consecutive win for the Jazz. Jordan Clarkson who has been in sparkling form recently scored 21 points while Rudy Gobert scored 14 points and had nine rebounds.
The Denver Nuggets are without their All-star Jamal Murray was second best throughout the night. Nikola Jokic narrowly missed out on yet another triple-double as he finished with 24 points, 13 assists, and 9 rebounds. Michael Porter Jr contributed 31 points to Denver’s losing cause while Paul Milsap and Austin Rivers scored 20 and 18 points respectively.
Utah did not trail over the final 11:22 of the fourth quarter after Niang hit back-to-back shots to give the Jazz a 103-99 lead. Denver scored just one basket over a six-minute stretch and couldn’t quite erase the resulting deficit.